Sausage Casserole – Hairy Dieter style


I couldn’t be arsed to wipe the plate

Sausage Casserole, in summer? Wait, I can explain. I’ve been taking full advantage of the glorious English weather recently and my barbecue has rarely been off. My local butcher does a great selection of British bangers and let’s just say I got a little over exuberant and ordered way too many.

When the weather predictably turned, I decided to make Sausage Casserole from the Hairy Dieters, in hindsight a recipe far better suited to winter than a barmy spring evening. Apart from it being a convenient excuse to open another bottle of wine my heart just wasn’t into this. I couldn’t even be arsed to wipe the plate properly when taking a photo. The plus points are that you can use full-fat sausages with a high meat content – I used Cumberland and the Hairy Dieters make other suggestions in their book.

But at the end of the day I don’t think this meal is a patch on some of their other low-cal classics, Sausages and Rich Onion Gravy and Hotdog Hotpot.

Recipe: Sausage Casserole

Calories: 471 per serving

Serves: 4

Book: Hairy Dieters – Make it Easy

Prep time: Approx 15 mins

Cooking time: Approx 60 mins

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 8 pork sausages
  • 1 large onion (sliced into thin wedges)
  • 2 carrots (thickly sliced diagonally)
  • 3 celery sticks (thickly sliced diagonally)
  • 3 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 150ml red wine
  • 200ml chicken stock
  • 400g can of tomatoes
  • 400g can of beans (cannellini, haricot or flageolet)
  • Handful of parsley leaves
  • Sea salt and black pepper

Cost per portion: Approx £1.28

Method: Heat the oil in a large flameproof casserole dish. Add the sausages and fry briskly, turning them regularly until they’re well browned. Remove the sausages from the dish and set them aside, then add the onion, carrots and celery. Cook the vegetables over a medium heat for about 10 minutes until they are starting to caramelise around the edges.

Add the garlic and thyme and continue to cook for 2-3 minutes. Put the sausages back in the dish, then pour over the red wine. Bring to the boil and reduce the wine by half, then pour in the stock. Season with salt and pepper. Bring everything back to the boil, then cover the dish with a lid and turn down the heat. Simmer for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

Add the tomatoes and beans, then continue to simmer, covered for another 10 minutes until the sauce has reduced. Serve with a generous sprinkling of parsley.

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