The Ultimate Sausage Casserole (Revisited)

Colin Cross, Going Postal
NOT CC’s Ultimate Sausage Casserole but Swiss Bob’s Sausage Monster

If I remember correctly I have posted a version of this recipe previously. I haven’t made it for some months and decided to see if I could give it a twist without compromising the “integrity” of the original.  The addition of the tomatoes, shallots and garlic elevates the dish (IMHO) and turns it into an evening meal fit to serve to guests while allowing the cook time to “mingle”.

This Recipe will serve 6 people as a main course.

You will need;

A large ceramic baking dish, 3 to 4 inches deep, large enough in area to take all the ingredients.

A large heavy deep sided frying pan.

Ingredients;

Rapeseed oil for frying

Olive oil for drizzling

A good 2 lb of best quality pork sausage (I use thick Cumberland ring)

4 ozs diced smoked pancetta

8 ozs of borlotti (or similar) beans

3 banana shallots, cut into rings

12-16 cherry tomatoes, halved

1 fat clove of garlic (or to taste) finely chopped

1 medium onion small dice

1 largish carrot small dice

2 sticks of celery small dice

3-4 ozs Butternut squash small dice

Fresh thyme leaves from 6-8 sprigs

Fresh celery leaf (about a tablespoon full)

½ pint good quality dry cider

Potatoes (floury) sliced about the thickness of a £1 coin

Method;

If your beans are dried you need to soak them overnight, tinned can be used but wash them thoroughly before use.

In the base of your dish mix the beans, shallots, tomatoes, garlic and the herbs (thyme & celery leaf) season with black pepper, the bacon should impart all the saltiness needed.

Heat about a tablespoon of rapeseed oil in your pan and fry off the pancetta to release the fat, do not brown. Drain on kitchen paper, scatter over the uncooked ingredients in the dish.

Cumberland sausage is easy to portion up, you really need 12 equal sized pieces. Fry off the sausage in the pan until it takes on some good colour (about 10 minutes). Place the sausage on top of the ingredients in the dish.

Reduce the heat in the pan and sweat the diced vegetables in the pan for 6 or 7 minutes without browning. Remove them from the pan with a slotted spoon and pack the vegetables around the sausage.

Use the cider to de-glaze the pan and allow it to reduce by about 1/3 then thicken it with a little cornflour paste, allow this to cook out for a minute or two. Pour this gravy over the assembled dish.

Place two layers of potatoes randomly but ensuring everything is covered, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and black pepper and bake for around an hour at 180 centigrade. The top layer of potatoes should be brown and crispy; the bottom layer should be soft and “unctuous”.

Lovely served on its own or with buttered Savoy cabbage. A bottle or two of Shiraz will wash it down nicely, as will a couple of pints of decent quality dry cider. If beer is preferred I would suggest a Pale Ale with good alcohol content. Haymaker (Hook Norton Brewery) fits the bill.

Enjoy.
 

© Coloniescross 2018