Tag Archives: sausage

Simple Supper: Baked Beans and Bangers

16 Nov

A big warm hug of a dinner

This supper is perfect when you’ve spent all day drinking tea and wearing chunky jumpers but still want something warm and comforting for tea.  If you have the forethought to soak beans overnight you can do so, otherwise I just use a can of cooked beans.  Once you have the beans ready to go, the meal’s on the table in less than an hour with a minimal amount of faffing in between.

It also makes me think of this delightful clip of  Tobias Fünke in Arrested Development asking his family who wants “a banger in the mouth”. And what more can you ask for, really?

To buy (for 2 big bowls):

*200g dried haricot beans/ 1 tin cooked haricot beans   *1 tbsp olive oil   *6 lovely pork sausages   *1 red onion or a few shallots, finely sliced   *2 garlic cloves, finely chopped   *1 red chilli de-seeded and finely chopped   *2tbsp sundried tomato puree   *1tsp smoked paprika   *1 pinch of sugar   *100ml red wine   *125ml chicken stock   *1tbsp balsamic vinegar   *salt and pepper   *1 bunch of parsley, torn-up.

To make:

1. If using dried beans, soak them overnight in cold water.  Drain the water and then rinse the beans and pop them in a large pan with water.  Bring to the boil and cook for 10 minutes.  Reduce the heat and simmer for 40 minutes or until the beans are soft then drain.

2. Preheat the oven to 180Oc/gas mark 4.  Drizzle the oil in a casserole dish, add the sausages and bake in the oven for about 15 minutes or so, until they’re golden brown all over.

3. Then add the onion to the dish and cook for about 5 minutes, then add the garlic and chilli and cook for a few more minutes.  Now add the beans, paprika, tomato puree, wine, stock, vinegar and seasoning. Mix well and cover with tin foil.  Pop a few holes in the tin foil and then pop in the oven.

4. Cook for 45 minutes.  If the bake is too dry add more stock, if too wet then remove the foil lid after about half an hour and cook until it’s the right consistency. Before you serve stir in the parsley.

5. Nice with buttery warm bread or spoonfuls of creamy mash.




Recipe: Ugly Stew

23 Mar

It aint got no alibi.

Were this stew a person it might be the maths geek at the back of the class who you didn’t notice at first. The one with the too-big bag, wonky glasses and lopsided smile. It wouldn’t be the hipster or the sporty one, no. This stew doesn’t look very handsome but – like the geeky kid – it has all the answers.

It’s fast, it’s cheap, it’s super-filling and it’s easy like a Sunday morning. Hurrah for the geek!

To buy:

* 1 Pack of sausages (I used Giggly pig spring onion and ginger)   *1 x 200g pack of diced pancetta (or you can use bacon if that’s easier)   *a couple of sticks of celery   *200g Cannellini beans   *200g Borlotti beans   *Big swig of olive oil   *Big know of butter   *3-4 cloves garlic finely chopped   *1 x onion   *1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes   *500ml chicken stock   *About 4 big leaves of green cabbage (like savoy) finely sliced   *Salt and Pepper   *Few handfuls of thyme   *Bunch of fresh parsley if you have it . Serves well with cheese and bread and wine.

To make:

1. Warm the oil and butter in a large saucepan and add the pancetta. When starting to cook and bubble add the garlic and stir well.

2. Add a sliced onion and ensure the heat is on quite high.  Chop the sausages into about 5 or six chunks and throw in the pan. Cook for about ten minutes or so. Throw in celery, which you’ve roughly chopped.

3. Season well and then add the tomatoes and stock.  Simmer for about 20 minutes or so.

4. If using dry beans you will have had to drain them overnight and then cooked and rinsed the beans for about 40 minutes. If canned beans then wash and drain. Add to the pan and cook for about 10 minutes.

5. Add the herbs and the cabbage and cook for just over five minutes (try and make sure the cabbage stays crisp and bright) and then pop into bowls.

Feeds between 3 and 4 people and is great with warm bread, good company and slightly aching muscles after a long walk in the rain!

Review: Inn The Park

20 Mar

Soon to be Inn My Tummy

Address: St James’s Park, London, SW1A 2BJ

Telephone: 020 7451 9999

Email: info@innthepark.com

Set in possibly my favourite of all of London’s beautiful parks (I really love Richmond and Battersea Parks too in case you were wondering) with epic views of Buckingham Palace, Westminster and even the London Eye, Inn The Park is sitting pretty.

On a summer’s day you can sit on the terrace and hear the huge array of ducks and geese – and yes, Pelicans too! – squawking and quacking as you tuck in to your plate of food, but this morning was a grey day so we elected to sit inside.

The decor is super stylish and light-infused by massive windows.  The cafe boasts gorgeous, sleek leather-bound chairs and has some really ace retro-orange formica tables and little vases of flowers. Cute.

Josh (who I may refer to as “The Brunette” in the style of AA Gill from now on..) ordered some bacon and scrambled eggs and asked for a sausage too, I wanted the girdle scones but was told they had run out. Overcoming a mini-sulk I ordered a round of toast and a Strawberry Flight – a whizz-up of strawberries, pear and bananas – and was a bit surprised when the waitress didn’t offer any coffee or tea. What is breakfast without coffee or tea? I mean really? Our food promptly arrived and my toast was missing marmalade – there had been no delivery that morning apparently – and the toast was freezing.  That said, there was lots of it and the Peyton and Byrne Perfect Raspberry Jam was just that – perfect.

Josh’s eggs, bacon and bangers were utterly beautiful. Top-notch and cooked to perfection. There is no faulting the integrity of the ingredients or the flair in which everything I have ever eaten from here is cooked. However, the service throughout breakfast was – like my toast – stone cold and pretty perfunctory.

And then there’s the cost. I am not known for my stinginess and I have been known to shell-out for good food. This is good food. But, but, but the ‘Half a grapefruit’ listed on the menu was £3. Josh’s single sausage came in at £2.50. The small glass of OJ was £3. Whilst not eye-watering the prices here are a little on the steep side…

Everything in the Inn is incredibly tasty and the setting is hard to beat.  I left feeling a little like they could have tried harder with the service and Josh’s, sorry – the brunette’s – wallet was a lot lighter but  I will certainly look forward to my next trip for a fabulous breakfast in the park.

Recipe: Toady

7 Mar
Scrummy supper

Toad-in-the-Hole is a pretty awesome dinner. Scrumptious to scoff, super quick to cook and so simple I was able to watch – and (*blushes*) laugh lots at – an old episode of Only Fools and Horses whilst it was cooking away…

To buy:

*A pack of sausages (I used Giggly Pigs Asparagus and Stilton)   *2 red onions roughly and thinly sliced   *1 tbsp olive oil   *100g plain flour   *2 eggs   *300ml of water and milk (equal mix of both)   *2 generous tbsp wholegrain mustard

To make:

1.Preheat the oven to 200Oc (fan oven) and pop the sausages and onions into a roasting tin, covered with the olive oil.  Cook for about 15 minutes so that they start to roast.

2. Meanwhile, sift the flour and salt into a bowl.  Make a well and add the eggs and beat together.  Add the mustard and milky-water and whisk into a smooth batter.

3.Remove the baking tray from the oven and evenly pour the batter over the sausages and onions and pop back in the oven and cook for about 35 minutes or so. Serve with whatever you fancy – gravy and veg is a winner.

A top dinner when the wind is blowing a gale and it’s effing freezing outside! The mustard in the batter really tingles your tastebuds and the sasusagey stodge is warming and filling.  Simple and scrummy.  

Recipe: Trucker’s Breakfast

14 Feb

Girl-portion on left, Boy-portion on right.

I am not sure if the Ice-Road Truckers (I freaking love that show!) would tuck into this breakfast on a Sunday morning, but I do like to think so…

I am still a beginner in the kitchen and don’t know about you, but find that some of the seemingly easiest things to cook make me quite nervous. Eggs, for example are a tricky one – how can you check they’re still fresh, how long to soft-boil? I ALWAYS end up googling Delia to check! And so this is a simple fry-up but if you get it right you can guarantee credits with your girlfriend/boyfriend/family/flat-mates all day long!

To buy (this is for 2 people):

*nice coffee/tea   *2 english muffins   *Danish bacon   *Juicy sausages   *3 free-range medium eggs   *big knob of  butter   *6 tbsp milk   *salt and pepper

To make:

1. Turn your grill on, and pop your sausages on a tin lined with baco-foil, cook for about 15 minutes or so on a high heat (my grill is pretty slow…) and turn them regularly and brown on all sides.

2. Crack the 3 eggs into a jug, add the milk and season well. I keep my eggs in a bowl out of the fridge and sometimes forget how old they are. Delia says that you can tell how fresh they are by placing in a tumbler of cold water: completely horizontal means it’s fresh, if it tilts up slightly or is semi-horizontal it’s a week or so old and if it is vertical then it’s stale. Thanks Delia!

3. When the sausages are looking almost-there add the bacon to the tray and get grilling.

4. Meanwhile add a generous knob of butter to a non-stick pan, pour the eggs in and let them cook for a minute or so, fold the eggs gently and let them cook. Pop the muffins into the toaster and stick the kettle on.

5. The eggs should be folded (not mixed or scrambled) a few times and should be juicy and sloppy, whilst they’re still wobbly, take the pan off the heat and leave to cook for half a minute or so.

6. Brew your coffee or tea and mug it, butter your muffins and pour on the eggs, and whack the meat on the plate. Ketchup as you wish, grab the paper and tuck-in.

For lots of people this would be stupidly easy but I do believe that if you can confidently carry off the basics and make honest food that tastes good it will make you – and your family and friends – very happy. What more can you ask for?

Recipe: Chunky Sausage Pasta

3 Feb

Easypeasy telly dinner

This is a scrummy dinner and the perfect snackette following a tough day in the office, a pounding hangover or when you only have marginally more energy than it would take to order in a pizza.

To buy:

*1 tbsp olive oil   *1 pack of squiggly pig sausages   *3 garlic cloves chunky chopped   *200ml white wine (nothing too shabby)   *1tbsp sundried tomato paste   *400g tin of chopped tomatoes   *200g pasta   *pinch of chilli   *salt and pepper   *stacks of cheese

To make:

1. Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based pan and add the sausages. Fry for about 8 mins until golden and cooked through.

2. Tip in the garlic and fry for 1 min.

3. Pour in the white wine and boil until it has reduced by half.

4. Stir in the tomato purée and tomatoes, a pinch of chilli and season to your tastes. Simmer for 15 mins until the sauce is rich and gloopy.

5.  Meanwhile boil your pasta (I cook mine with a knob of butter and plenty of salt), when cooked throw it in a bowl, add the sauce and sausages and top with mountains of cheese.

This happily feeds two empty bellies – with room for a spot of cake for puds maybe – and literally takes about 20 minutes. It is hangover-tested and I can vouch that even with a stonker it’s simple and tasty.

Recipe: Bangers and Mash

27 Jan

For Bodger and Bagder

It’s still winter which means it’s still perfectly legitimate to scoff stodge. Lots and lots of stodge. And this is about as stodgy as it gets: garlic sausage, cheddar mash, a few token peas (for a bit of green on the plate) and onion, mustard gravy. Yum.

To buy:

* 6 x garlic sausages   *4 medium maris piper potatoes   *1 onion   *2 handfuls of grated cheddar   *peas   *knob of butter   *full fat milk   *beef gravy   *Dijon mustard   *salt and pepper

To make:

1. Pre-heat the grill and cook the sausages (mine are always the Squiggly pig ones from the Oval market, which cannot be beaten).

2. Meanwhile, peel the tats and boil in salty water. Chop the onion and place in a frying pan.

3. After about twenty minutes mash the potatoes, on a gentle heat, add the butter, cheese and milk. Purree until smooth and gooey. Leave to cook through.

4. Fry the onion and boil the peas, heat the gravyand add the mustard. Tip in the onions.

5. Throw everything on a plate, season like crazy and then devour.

An easy post-pub dinner that tastes properly wholesome and tingles your tastebuds. Yum.

Review: Oval Market

23 Jan

Every Saturday.

The Oval Market is found at St. Mark’s Churchyard, The Oval, Kennington, London SE11 4PW, every Saturday from 10am (so I am told, I doubt I’m ever up and at it that early!!) until 3pm. It consists of about 15 or so stalls and is small but perfectly formed. There are places to get fresh crepes, hot apple juice or gorgeous burgers and sometimes there are junk stalls or plant tents but mostly it’s the incredible home-made  food.

My favourite stalls are:

– the jam one (I forget the name) but they sell THE best grapefruit jam EVER.

– Giggly pigs: the nicest bangers I’ve ever had in SO many flavours. The spicy garlic ones are insanely good.

– The Cake-hole: run by a sweet girl, it’s a kitsch stall and she sells the most delicious and super generous slices of cake and chocolate brownies that are out of this world. Yum.

The veggie stalls are great and I’ve bought amazing truffles, great meat and smoked cheese. All in this place is wonderful. Much better value than larger markets – a real find.

**********(10) Stars