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Sausage, Leek and Cider Casserole

I got asked today if I post recipes on my blog. I said no, because I tend to add a bit of this and a bit of that without measuring it properly. It got me to thinking … I love hearing about other people’s food and flavour combinations and having a go for myself, so maybe you might like to do the same with my creations? Anyway, I thought I would post a few of my recipes from time to time, so let me know if you like it or if you’d rather I went back to my culinary ambiguity! 😉

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Sausage, Leek and Cider Casserole

1 good dessertspoonful of butter or margarine and/or a good dollop of olive oil

2 medium-to-large onions, chopped,

3 big garlic cloves, crushed or chopped (or to taste)

8 sausages, cut in half (I use kitchen scissors!) – I used Cumberland (peppery) pork sausages, but you could use any flavour or type of meat you like – or veggie!

2 regular/1 massive sized carrot/s, cut in half-rings

2-3 sticks celery, chopped

2-3 leeks, cut into large, chunky, whole rings

2 heaped tbsp plain/all-purpose flour

1 regular sized bottle of dry cider – about 500ml

2 heaped tbsp tomato puree

2 overflowing tbsp Worcestershire Sauce (if you can’t get that, try some vinegar and/or mustard)

1 scant tbsp brown or muscavado sugar

150-300ml/as needed hot stock (I used a chicken stock cube)

1 heaped tsp of dried thyme, oregano and sage, or other herbs to taste

Salt and ground black pepper to taste

1-2 bay leaves

1 tbsp lemon concentrate (bottled lemon juice) optional

  1. Fry onion in butter/oil for about 5 mins, till slightly translucent, add garlic and cook for another 3-5 mins.
  2. Add halved sausages and fry until nicely browned, but make sure onions aren’t burning.
  3. Add carrots and celery and fry for 5-10 mins, then add leeks and fry for another 10 -15 mins or until all veg very slightly softened/just look right!
  4. Add flour and stir, cooking for 2 mins, until all flour well mixed.
  5. Add cider and mix until the cider has combined to make a sauce, along with extra stock.
  6. Add all the rest of the ingredients except lemon juice, bring to a boil and then turn down to simmering, with a lid on.
  7. Leave to simmer for about 40 mins, stirring occasionally (or if you’re like me – as few times as you can resist! 😉 ) or until veg are cooked to liking.
  8. Add lemon juice and adjusting seasoning towards end.
  9. If needed, remove lid and simmer until your desired stew/casserole consistency has been reached.

The first time I served this in a bowl with boiled new potatoes and crusty white bread, but I have also served with mashed potato and fresh veg, or baked in a pastry pie in the oven. I would also serve this with rice.

For me, this made 3 man-size (or 3 regular and 3 small) portions and freezes really well.

I hope you enjoy! 🙂

Smiling

Here are two things which have really made me smile this week, despite a number of things which have made me very sad …

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L bought me a dozen red roses for our anniversary – not just any red roses, but my very favourite shade of red and my favourite kind of roses!

How can I not smile?!

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I made my hubby a Cherry Pie!

I’ve cooked and baked many things for L, before and during our marriage, and one of the sung favourites has been a Cherry Pie! What’s not to love?!

I am told I inherited my Grandmother’s skill for pastry, so let’s bake!! 😀

What has made you smile this week?! 🙂

Jambalaya!

Contrary to what my blog has lately suggested, L and I have been very busy …

Work, big-house-clear-out, deep-cleaning, walking with friends, cooking together, craft projects … plus all the mundane little bits and bobs it’s too boring to list!

I will be posting some photos as soon as I can, but for now, here’s what we got up to tonight …

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We made Jambalaya!

L has a friend he plays games with, who he yesterday discovered is Cajun. We had both heard of Cajun as in the spice, but didn’t know that they are an ethnic group of people.

Inspired by this new knowledge we decided to cook Jambalaya!

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We used Momma’s Meat Jambalaya recipe and it was a huge success, literally – it tasted brilliant and it made a huge pan full of spicy meat and rice! Seriously – we ate it tonight, put some in the fridge for tomorrow and put another four portions in the freezer!

We used Basmati rice instead of Long Grain rice and it absorbed a lot more water and cooked faster than the recipe said it would, but hey, who minds getting to eat it a bit sooner, especially when the wonderful cooking smells are drifting around the whole house?! 😉

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I love all the colours!

We added cooked prawns/shrimps to the portions on our plate (I have a bit of a thing about re-heating seafood too much … ) and they added the perfect finishing touch to the dish – yummy!!

Oh yes, and the perfect finishing touch to the evening was a bottle of white wine, Escape From New York and a bar of Cadbury’s Caramel Dairymilk – brilliant! 😀