Sweet & Sour Kielbasa

It always feels good to be home after being out of town for several days, regardless of the amount of laundry that needs to be done.  And to be back to normal sleeping schedules!  Are my kids the only ones that sleep terribly when traveling and not in their own beds?  It’s the one thing I dread about going out of town.  Well, that and the eight hour drive to my parents’ that turns into a 10 hour drive with stops in every single town along the way for potty breaks and diaper changes.  
But spending time with family, especially over the holidays, is so worth it! We had such a great time {all o17 of us} celebrating Christmas together, caroling, staying up late, playing games, running in freezing cold weather, and eating lots of really good food. 
So much good food that I’m ready to get back into a healthier eating routine (read= fewer carbs and smaller doses of chocolate).  But of course, that’ll be right after New Year’s Eve.  
If you’re looking for an easy appetizer to make for your New Year’s Eve party this Sweet & Sour Kielbasa is perfect.   It’s sweet, sour, and saucy.  I added a pinch of crushed red pepper to give it just a little bit of kick.  I like to use turkey kielbasa and also like to brown it before putting it in the crock pot.  I like the edges to be slightly crispy.  If you want to save yourself ten minutes, you can skip this step.    
To serve just stack several slices of sausage on toothpicks and set out for your guests to enjoy. You can spoon some of the sauce on to each stack tooTo serve this as a main dish just serve the sausage and sauce over rice with some veggies.  

Sweet & Sour Kielbasa
Ingredients
2 cups ketchup
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
6 tbs butter
1/2 cup chopped onion (optional)
4 tbs lemon juice
pinch of crushed red pepper
1/2 cup water
1 lb kielbasa sausage, sliced (we use turkey sausage)
Directions
Place everything but the onion and sausage in a crock pot and mix together. Set crock pot to low.
Heat a large pan coated with olive oil (1-2 tbs) over medium heat. Add chopped onion and saute until golden. Add sliced sausage and cook on each side for several minutes or until browned (may need to increase heat to medium-high to brown sausage).
Place the sausage and onion in the crock pot and stir to combine with sauce.
Cook in crock pot on low setting for 30 minutes to 1 hr (depending on crock pot). Turn to “keep warm” setting until ready to serve.
For an appetizer, serve with toothpicks. For a meal, serve sausage and sauce over rice.

**you can skip sauteeing the onions and browning the sausage and just throw it all into the crock pot if you want to eliminate that step.

adapted from Allrecipes
serves 6

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