Sausage Casserole

Sausage Casserole

Serves: to serve 6

Prep Time: 10 Minutes

Cook Time: 50 Minutes

Ready In: 1 hr

2 tablespoons - duck (or goose) fat

12 - quality pork sausages

6 rashers (slices) - streaky bacon

2 medium - onions

2 cloves - garlic

1 x 14oz can - chopped tomatoes

9½ fl oz - chicken stock

2 tablespoons - tomato purée (tomato paste)

1 tablespoon - Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon - Muscovado sugar (Demerara [turbinado} if not available)

1 tablespoon - dried mixed herbs

2 - bay leaves

3 sprigs - fresh thyme

3½ fl oz - red wine

1 x 14oz can - butter beans or mixed beans

  - salt and pepper

  1. Heat a tablespoon of the duck fat (you can use oil if you really must!!) in a large non-stick frying pan (skillet) and fry the sausages gently for 10 minutes, turning every now and then until they are nicely browned all over. Transfer them to a large saucepan or a flameproof casserole dish and set aside.
  2. Trim any rind off the bacon and cut it into pieces about 1" (2.5cm) long. Fry the bacon pieces in the same frying pan until they begin to turn brown and go crisp, then add them to the sausages in the casserole.
  3. Peel and thinly slice the onions. Place them in the same frying pan and fry over a medium heat for five minutes until they start to soften, stirring often. You may need to add the other tablespoon of duck fat here, because you should always have enough fat in the pan, if not, the onions will brown and burn.
  4. Peel and crush (mince) the garlic. Add the garlic to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes more, stirring frequently, until the onions turn pale golden-brown. Stir in the tomatoes, chicken stock, tomato purée, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, mixed herbs, bay leaves and thyme sprigs.
  5. Pour in the wine and bring to a simmer, then tip everything carefully into the pan or casserole dish with the sausages and bacon. Return to a simmer, then reduce the heat. Cover the pan loosely with a lid and leave to simmer very gently for 20 minutes, stirring from time to time.
  6. Drain the beans and rinse them in a sieve (strainer) under cold running water. Stir them into the casserole, and continue to cook for 10 more minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is thick. Remove and discard the thyme sprigs and bay leaves, then season the casserole to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper and serve with rice or slices of rustic bread.