Quick-time sausage cassoulet

sausage casserole

Serves 8

  • 2 handfuls dried porcini mushrooms, broken up

  • 8 thick slices dry-cured higher-welfare streaky bacon

  • extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 large bunch mixed fresh rosemary, thyme and sage

  • 2 red onions, peeled and roughly chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1 large carrot, peeled and roughly chopped

  • ½ heart celery, finely chopped

  • 2 bay leaves

  • ½ bottle red wine

  • 3 x 400 g tinned plum tomatoes

  • 2 x 400 g tinned borlotti or cannellini beans or use a mixture

  • sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • 24 higher-welfare chipolata sausages, or use 16 larger sausages

  • 1 large stale loaf, crusts removed

  • 1 small handful fresh thyme, leaves picked

Preheat your oven to 200˚C/400˚F/gas 6. Put your porcini mushrooms into a dish, cover with 565ml/1 pint of boiling water and allow to soak until soft. Heat a large roasting tray on the hob. Slice the bacon across into strips – called 'lardons'. Fry in 4 tablespoons of olive oil until crisp and golden. Tie your herbs together with some string and add to the bacon in the pan with your onions, garlic, carrot, celery and bay leaves. Drain the porcini, reserving the soaking liquid, add them to the pan and fry nice and slowly for about 5 minutes. Add the red wine and simmer until the liquid has reduced by half.



Add the tomatoes to the pan, breaking them up with a spoon, then add your strained porcini soaking liquor and the beans. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Lightly season then lay your sausages on top – all higgledy piggledy, so they can get nice and brown as they cook. Break up your bread into coarse, chunky breadcrumbs, toss with the thyme, a little salt and olive oil and sprinkle around the sausages. Place in the oven for around 40 minutes until the sausages and breadcrumbs are golden and crisp. Remove the bunch of herbs and serve with something like mashed potato or polenta.



Try this: Any combination of beans and lentils works well in this cassoulet, so feel free to use what you fancy.



And this: Sometimes if I want to make this a bit more healthy and get some greens involved I will stir in a couple of handfuls of fresh spinach right at the end when serving up. The heat from the dish will make the spinach wilt.

Nutritional Information

Quick-time sausage cassoulet

With tomatoey beans and chunky breadcrumbs

0 foodies cooked this
Whether you call it a sausage cassoulet or casserole, one thing's for sure – it's top comfort food
Serves 8
1h 25m
Super easy
Print this recipe
Method

This dish was inspired by a builder called Dusty, who kept talking about a sausage casserole. So I made this one up very quickly, basing it on a French cassoulet-type thing. It's nice and easy to cook for a group as it's all done in one dish. While I was going sausage-mad, I realized that we're fantastically lucky these days to have great sausages available in the supermarkets, farmers' markets and good local butchers. In this dish feel free to use any sausages you like.

Preheat your oven to 200˚C/400˚F/gas 6. Put your porcini mushrooms into a dish, cover with 565ml/1 pint of boiling water and allow to soak until soft. Heat a large roasting tray on the hob. Slice the bacon across into strips – called 'lardons'. Fry in 4 tablespoons of olive oil until crisp and golden. Tie your herbs together with some string and add to the bacon in the pan with your onions, garlic, carrot, celery and bay leaves. Drain the porcini, reserving the soaking liquid, add them to the pan and fry nice and slowly for about 5 minutes. Add the red wine and simmer until the liquid has reduced by half.

Add the tomatoes to the pan, breaking them up with a spoon, then add your strained porcini soaking liquor and the beans. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Lightly season then lay your sausages on top – all higgledy piggledy, so they can get nice and brown as they cook. Break up your bread into coarse, chunky breadcrumbs, toss with the thyme, a little salt and olive oil and sprinkle around the sausages. Place in the oven for around 40 minutes until the sausages and breadcrumbs are golden and crisp. Remove the bunch of herbs and serve with something like mashed potato or polenta.

Try this: Any combination of beans and lentils works well in this cassoulet, so feel free to use what you fancy.

And this: Sometimes if I want to make this a bit more healthy and get some greens involved I will stir in a couple of handfuls of fresh spinach right at the end when serving up. The heat from the dish will make the spinach wilt.

Nutritional Information Amount per serving:

Calories

Calories are just a unit of energy. If you eat more than you use you can gain weight, or lose it if you don't eat enough. How much you need depends on your weight, gender and how active you are, but it's around 2,000 a day.

Carbs

Carbs are a great source of energy and, excluding foods such as potatoes, are made from grains - like bread, pasta and cereal. We all need carbs, but try to make them all wholegrain by sticking to brown bread, rice and pasta - they are much more nutritious.

Sugar

We all deserve a treat sometimes, but try to limit your sugar intake. Most of your sugar should come from raw fruit and milk, because they give us lots of nutrients too. Always check food labels so you know how much sugar you're eating.

Fat

We all need to eat a small amount of fat because it protects our organs and helps us grow. But we need to be careful about how much fat we eat and what kinds of fat, because in higher levels it's associated with weight gain, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

Saturates

Saturated or "bad fats" are in beef, pork, chicken skin, butter, cream and cheese. Too much can be bad for our heart and cholesterol levels, but unsaturated or "good fats" in fish, nuts, avocados and some oils can help keep our hearts healthy if eaten in moderation.

Protein

Protein helps our muscles to grow and repair, as well as providing you with essential amino acids. When it comes to protein, try to eat leaner sources such as chicken and fish or non-meat sources such as eggs, dairy, beans, nuts, seeds, tofu and pulses.
  • Calories 1095
    55%
  • Carbs 86.0g
    33%
  • Sugar 12.0g 13%
  • Fat 52.8g 75%
  • Saturates 16.4g 82%
  • Protein 59.1g 131%
Of an adult's reference intake

Related recipes:

BUYING SUSTAINABLY SOURCED FISH

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Buying sustainably sourced fish means buying fish that has been caught without endangering the levels of fish stocks and with the protection of the environment in mind. Wild fish caught in areas where stocks are plentiful are sustainably sourced, as are farmed fish that are reared on farms proven to cause no harm to surrounding seas and shores.

When buying either wild or farmed fish, ask whether it is sustainably sourced. If you're unable to obtain this information, don't be afraid to shop elsewhere – only by shopping sustainably can we be sure that the fantastic selection of fish we enjoy today will be around for future generations.

For further information about sustainably sourced fish, please refer to the useful links below:

Marine Stewardship Council
http://www.msc.org/

Fish Online
http://www.fishonline.org

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  • 2 handfuls dried porcini mushrooms, broken up

  • 8 thick slices dry-cured higher-welfare streaky bacon

  • extra virgin olive oil

  • 1 large bunch mixed fresh rosemary, thyme and sage

  • 2 red onions, peeled and roughly chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1 large carrot, peeled and roughly chopped

  • ½ heart celery, finely chopped

  • 2 bay leaves

  • ½ bottle red wine

  • 3 x 400 g tinned plum tomatoes

  • 2 x 400 g tinned borlotti or cannellini beans or use a mixture

  • sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

  • 24 higher-welfare chipolata sausages, or use 16 larger sausages

  • 1 large stale loaf, crusts removed

  • 1 small handful fresh thyme, leaves picked