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I have been meaning to blog about this stand-out dish for a number of weeks now. If I’m completely honest, I did make a start but the picture that I had didn’t really cut it. This was the case after cooking the meal on two occasions, probably because in actual fact, it just doesn’t photograph particularly well. I knocked it up again on Monday and managed to get a half decent snap. What it lacks in appearance, it more then makes up for in the flavour and comfort stakes. You have my word on this.

This meal is featured in a great little addition to our bookcase – ‘Traditional Farmhouse Fare’ – which is essentially a collection of country recipes, a majority of which were originally submitted as competition entries by Farmer’s Weekly readers. It’s all about wholesome, hearty food, grown, prepared and cooked by those who live and work in the countryside (farmers’ wives). ‘Sausages in Curry Sauce’ was sent in by ‘Mrs Christine Gooderham from Croxton in Norfolk’. It’s a dish that I like to think I have tweaked to perfection, that my family all adore and never tire of. It has been requested time and time again (even by returning dinner guests), simply because it tastes so damn good.

To make it you will need (serves four):
– 12 pork sausages (the better the quality, the better the taste naturally)
– A packet of smoked bacon (streaky or back both work equally well – sliced into squares)
– Two onions (chopped)
– 225g of mushrooms (chestnut is my preferred choice – medium sliced)
– A tin of chopped tomatoes
– 50g of butter
– 50g of plain flour
– 300ml/half a pint of chicken stock
– 4 heaped teaspoons of curry powder (homemade if possible)
– A pinch of mixed herbs (you can use a little thyme and oregano as a substitute)
– Salt and black pepper

The method I use:
– Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 4/180C.
– Melt the butter in a frying pan on a medium heat, then add the onions and mushrooms.

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– Fry until softened and then layer into the bottom of an ovenproof casserole dish.
– Add the bacon to the same pan and cook until slightly browned and slightly crispy, then layer on top of the onions and mushrooms.

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– Fry off the sausages in the pan (add a little olive oil if needed) until coloured all round, then place in rows on top of the bacon.

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To make the sauce:
– Add a tablespoon of olive oil to the same frying pan (if required – I usually do) then slowly add the flour, stirring continuously to make a roux. Cook for two minutes and you should have a paste forming.
– Take off the heat and slowly add all of the stock, stirring continuously again, then place back on the heat to thicken – more stirring.
– Add the tomatoes, curry powder, dried herbs and a good pinch of seasoning to taste. Stir well and cook until bubbling.
– Pour over the sausages so completely covered, place the lid on and put into the oven for one hour.

In my opinion (as with most things), the added bacon really makes this dish. It lends that feeling of ‘indulgence’ that bacon does oh so well. Also, its nice to jazz up bog standard sausages with a bit of spice!

We always serve ours simply with a good sized portion of creamed potatoes on the side. We have tried it with jacket potatoes (which also works), but I personally prefer it alongside mash, in order to experience that extreme comfort factor that this dinner DOES deliver. As the title suggests, eating sausages in curry sauce is like a big, friendly cuddle – warm, robust and very inviting.

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