Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Venison Sausage Casserole

This, let me tell you my friends, was the best casserole I have ever eaten - and I have made & eaten a fare few! - this was so good I even licked the plate which is normally something I frown on especially when Andrew does it and it's a glass plate so I can see the whole process - not pretty!

He excuses his behaviour by explain that the food is 'soooo good' he has to eat every last morsel and because I love him he gets away with it.......... but not when we have guests........well not always.....

Anyway, back to this wonderful, magnificent, five-star casserole.....

Some sausages are worth doing something special with, not just make bangers and mash, but going that extra mile and making a real dish of it. Venison sausages are worthy of that treatment and combined with red wine, herbs and berries - slow cooked to bring out all the flavours - there is nothing better.

Ingredients - to serve 2

1lb Venison sausages
6oz Smoked lardons
10fl oz red wine
4 medium cloves garlic - leave whole with skins on
4 large shallots - peeled
1 dessert spoon juniper berries - lightly crushed
some sprigs of thyme
sprig of rosemary
3 bay leaves
6oz mushrooms
1 teaspoon flour
1 teaspoon mustard powder
1oz butter - softened
1 tablespoon redcurrant jelly
salt & pepper

Preheat oven 180C/Gas 4

Now I was already to start making and photographing this recipe when..........

..............my battery on the camera ran out.

That's OK I thought, I'll put in the spare one - guess what.... it's not charged either


....so I put them both on charge and proceeded to make the recipe.......

here's a montage of some of the ingredients - before my batteries died........

so here's what you do.........

Grab a casserole pot that you can put on the stove top, or use a non-stick pan for this first bit, and brown the sausages evenly all over - don't split the skins - transfer them to a plate and then brown up the lardons along with the shallots.

Return the sausages to the casserole pot along with the lardons; shallots; thyme; bay; whole cloves of garlic (with their skins still on) and the juniper berries.....

Pour on the wine......

Pop the lid on and place in the preheated oven for 30 minutes.

Remove from the oven and add the mushrooms. Make sure they are covered in some juices and then pop back in the oven for another 20 minutes.

Whilst that is happening make up the thickening paste - mix together the butter, flour and mustard powder to form a smooth paste.

To finish - remove the pot from the oven and pour the liquid off into a saucepan. Put the lid back on the casserole and set aside to keep warm.

Whisk the thickening paste into the saucepan of juices over a medium heat - let it bubble for a few minutes and then add the redcurrant jelly and pour back over the casserole.

(yes - camera back up and running for a picture of the finished casserole)

Serve with some buttered kale and/or some creamy mash potato.......

 - lovely especially on a wet and windy autumnal night.......

 venison casserole