Wednesday 12 September 2018

Is it a salad? Is it a stew? Your guess is as good as mine!

I don't know about you, but on chilly autumnal days and wintry evenings, all I want to eat is bread dunked into thick soups and stews. I'm talking ultimate comfort food.

A firm favourite of mine is lentils. Whether in a spiced dhal, or adding extra substance to a soup or a potato topped pie, you can't go far wrong. Great in both meat and vegetarian dishes, lentils are low fat and full of nutrients. I use red lentils in veggie lentil ragu and I find puy lentils are great in hearty stews.

I'm not altogether sure how to classify the below recipe. Is is a warm salad? Is it a stew? You decide. All I know is that it's damn tasty whatever it is.

You will need...

  • 1 red pepper, sliced into thin strips
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar (I actually used more)
  • 1 tbsp English mustard
  • 250g pouch of easy cook puy lentils (I used Merchant Gourmet puy lentils)
  • 2 rosemary sprigs
  • Fresh parsley (optional)
  • Dried thyme (I was liberal with these)
  • Wild & Game pheasant & pear sausages


1. Set your oven to 190°C / Fan 170°C / Gas 5 and cook the sausages in the centre of a pre-heated oven for 25-30 minutes, turning mid-way through.

2. Meanwhile fry the chopped red pepper until soft (I like mine slightly charred for extra flavour!)

3. Add the balsamic vinegar, mustard, fresh parsley, rosemary and thyme, and stir to combine

4. Add the lentils. As they are ready cooked, you will only need to warm these

5. As soon as the sausages are fully cooked, remove from the oven, slice them, and add them to the pan as well

7. Season to taste and add more herbs, balsamic etc according to your taste (I added extra balsamic and extra thyme)

8. Serve with a sliced French baguette. Or salad. Or both.

If you thought my other sausage stew recipe was simple, then you're in luck.. the above recipe is even easier to rustle up! Pop the sausages into the oven and once they are cooked, the rest of the meal hardly takes any time at all. To be honest it takes more thyme than time (sorry!)

I really liked the venison sausages I talked about here, but I actually loved the pheasant & pear ones used in today's recipe even more. They were different to other sausages I have tried before as they didn't taste of either beef or pork and were more like chicken or turkey, and leaner. I was nervous that the fruit (pear) would come through fairly strongly, but luckily it was only subtle.

And if you're veggie, you can always sub out the sausages for veggie ones.

It's a fairly budget friendly recipe as lots of the ingredients are staples you may already have in your food cupboard. But to make it even cheaper, use dried lentils instead of ready cooked ones and cook according to the packet instructions. Ready cooked lentils are great for if you are short on time and want a quick meal, but are not the cheapest option (to be honest, I don't buy them often and usually wait until they are on special offer!)

I would say this recipe serves two people but it depends on your appetite (M. and I tend to have larger lunches and smaller dinners so this did us for x2 meals each).

The herb, balsamic and mustard concoction is designed to be like a light salad dressing rather than a sauce so I accompanied mine with salad. However I haven't listed salad in the ingredients above as for me personally I didn't find that the salad worked with the dish at all. The leaves and lentils were both quite 'earthy', so instead I suggest accompanying with a sliced French baguette to add a different texture to the dish. Plus bread is structurally sound for scooping up that lentil goodness (not quite as effective with a lettuce leaf!)

And don't feel obliged to add fresh parsley. I added it to mine and it didn't really add anything. Thyme and rosemary allow for much deeper flavours and complement the sausages better.

* Wild & Game sausages kindly sent for review purposes. As ever, all words and opinions are my own

No comments:

Post a Comment

I am forever grateful for each and every comment I receive, and try my best to reply to them all.

If you leave a comment, I will check out your blog / Twitter and say hi in some capacity

Select "Name/URL" or "anon" from the "comment as" drop-down if you aren't visiting via a blog