Monday, 4 January 2010


Try this simple recipe from our guest writer Alistair’s the perfect winter rib-sticker which you can source from Stewart & Co in Jesmond like they do in supermarket sweeps. It’s simple to make (you don’t have to be too precise with the amounts) and the Puy lentils give the sausage a lovely, peppery send-off. Use Stewarts’ Sizzlers for solid meatiness or combine with Stewarts’ brilliant other styles. It’s easily heated through later and perfect to have after a couple of pints. Talking of which, a bottle of Hadrian & Border Farne Island Bitter would make a great accompaniment.

Sausage and Puy lentil casserole
Serves 6 (or two students)
4 tbsp olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped fine
2 garlic cloves, crushed
12 Stewart Sizzler sausages
200g streaky bacon
Fennel, medium bulb
2 carrots, chopped
1 stick of celery, chopped
1 tsp thyme
450ml chicken stock
2 tsp redcurrant jelly (or similar)
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
200g dried Puy lentils
Seasoning as required.

Serve with mashed potatoes or crusty bread.
Side dish: Mix 4 tbsp crème fraiche with 2 tbsp wholegrain mustard

Fry the onion and garlic gently in the olive oil without them colouring.
Fry the sausages separately and slowly until browned all over and so the ingredients get to know each other. Leave them whole or chop – it’s your decision (you can eat the whole thing with a fork only).
Add the bacon, fennel, carrot and celery to the softened onion and cook till just going tender.
Stir in the thyme and add the sausage.
Pour in the chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Add the redcurrant jelly and balsamic vinegar, then the lentils. Pause a moment to appreciate the aromas.
Simmer until tender (about 30 min) and keep an eye on the liquid – don’t let it get too dry. Top up with a little water if necessary.
Serve with mashed potatoes and/or the bread plus the crème fraiche and mustard mixture.
Pour the beer. Live a little.

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