Tag Archives: leeks

Pork sausage and puy lentil casserole

As I didn’t get to finish my main course from Latteria Mozzarella Bar, I thought I would make something from the leftovers/doggy bag the following night. I had bought some lovely puy lentils which my supermarket just started stocking, and adding them to a casserole with my sausages made perfect sense.

I also had leeks and swiss brown mushrooms in my fridge, so in to the casserole they also went, to make a good earthy, warming meal.

You can just as easily use fresh sausages for this dish, but I would then add a garlic to the casserole (see recipe below).

Ingredients for 2 servings

  1. 4 good quality pork sausages
  2. 1 glass dry white wine
  3. 4 cloves garlic (optional, see note above)
  4. 1 large onion, sliced
  5. 1 cup swiss brown mushrooms, halved
  6. 2 large leeks, rinsed and sliced
  7. 1 cup puy lentils, rinsed
  8. 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
  9. 2-3 sage leaves, chopped if fresh, or 1 tsp dried sage
  10. 1-2 bay leaves

Method

  1. In a heavy-based saucepan, heat some oil and brown the sausages – they don’t need to be cooked through at this point if you’re using fresh sausages. Remove from pan and set aside. When cool enough to handle, cut into 1” slices
  2. Deglaze the pan with the white wine, pour into a jug, set aside
  3. Heat more oil in the pan and gently sweat the onions until translucent
  4. Add garlic next if you are using them
  5. Add leeks and mushrooms and fry until soft
  6. Add the sausages and white wine
  7. Add lentils and sage and bay leaves and enough stock to cover all ingredients and bring to a boil
  8. Lower heat and gently simmer for 1 1/2 hours till lentils are cooked through
  9. Serve with crusty bread

Sausage and bean casserole

I had sausages.  I had beans.  What to make for dinner ?  Why, a sausage and bean casserole of course !  Add in bacon and leeks and I had a casserole that’s pretty quick and easy to make and a delicious way to end a Monday. (I do wish that I lived in a country with seasons.  The subtle heat of the cayenne pepper and the comforting casserole would make it a perfect winter warmer)

Ingredients (makes a big pot that would serve 4-6)

  1. 6 good quality sausages
  2. 2 large leeks
  3. 5 rashers bacon, chopped
  4. 1 tin mixed beans (you could easily accommodate another tin if you like beans) rinsed until the water goes clear
  5. 1 glass of wine
  6. 1 cup chicken stock
  7. pinch cayenne pepper
  8. handful fresh parsley if you can get it, chopped

Method:

  1. In a large casserole dish, brown the sausages, take out, slice into pieces and set aside
  2. Fry the bacon pieces until nice and crispy.  Take out and set aside
  3. Reduce the heat and fry the leeks for about 3-4 minutes until soft
  4. Turn up the heat and add the wine and bring to the boil.  Let boil for 2-3 minutes for the alcohol to burn off
  5. Add the stock and then put the sausages and bacon (leave a few of the crispier pieces as a garnish) back in the pot, with the beans and cayenne pepper and simmer for 10-15 minutes until the beans are warmed through – don’t bring it to boil or the beans will go mushy
  6. Serve, topped with chopped parsley and bacon bits, and with some crusty bread

 

 


Leek and potato soup

Leek and potato soup

Another one of my favourite comfort foods.  Easy, nutritious and delicious – leek and potato soup hits all the right spots.

I keep the skins on my potatoes so that I can keep a lot of the nutrients and fibre that potatoes offer.  Just make sure you scrub them thoroughly and remove any deep eyes or bruises and don’t buy potatoes that look green – it’s not enough to make you ill if you eat these, but it just means that they are not fresh.

Ingredients to serve around 6 comforting bowls

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 large leeks, washed
  • 3 large potatoes
  • 1 L of chicken stock (at room temperature or cold – not hot)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • dollop of cream (optional)

Method

  1. Sweat the onions in a large saucepan in butter and olive oil until translucent
  2. Slice the white part of the leeks (discard the darker green parts) and add to the leeks
  3. Chop the washed potatoes while the leeks are sweating down
  4. Fill the saucepan with chicken stock and add the potatoes (cooking potatoes in cold liquid helps them cook more evenly and prevent mushiness – I adhere to this rule even in soups).  The stock should just cover the potatoes.  Add more or less depending on the size of your saucepan.
  5. Bring to boil, cover and lower temperature to a simmer for 20 minutes.
  6. Take off the heat and blend/puree with a stick blender until smooth.  Season to taste.
  7. Serve hot with a drizzle of olive oil with some crusty buttered bread.  Alternatively you can add a generous dollop of cream.