Sausage Stew With Fennel And Chilli: Winter Warmers - Episode 1

Uploaded by VideojugFoodAndDrink on 12.01.2013

Hi I'm Gee Charman and welcome to my series on winter warmers.
I'm going to show you how to cook a delicious sausage, fennel and chilli stew.
You can find the full list of ingredients for this recipe in the description box.
So I've got a pan heating up here, this is a one pot stew so everything goes
into this pan. Because it's got a bit of chilli, normally
I'd use a bit of olive oil in this but actually I've just noticed sitting by
the side of me is my huge bottle, in a wine decanter, of chilli oil,
which is just olive oil, a few chilli flakes, and a few birds eye chillis
which have been dried.
So I like spice in my food so I'm going to use that,
instead of normal olive oil.
There is chilli going in later so don't panic if you don't have this.
Now these are just really good quality, free range pork sausages.
They're quite plain, they're not particularly spiced.
And I just want to brown these off to get a bit of colour on.
Now this is sort of a slightly smokey, spitty bit of the recipe,
but it's really worth doing it this way round.
So you just want them to start taking on bits of colour,
and then you can just turn them over.
So now the pan is nice and hot I'm just going to put
it on a slightly lower heat just to get a gentle colour going.
So the purpose of this really isn't to cook them through
as they'll cook through later in the stew, it's just to get a bit of colour, a bit of
flavour and it cooks off the skins that the sausages
are in. If they're not brown they can be a bit chewy.
So these have now got a beautiful bit of colour on,
and I'm just going to pop them out onto a plate.
And just set those to one side for a minutes.
Now I'm going to do something that's really traditional in Italian cooking,
and it's called a sofrito. And it's basically onion, celery and carrot.
So I'm now just going to add a little bit of olive oil to the pan,
and a little bit of indulgent butter.
And then it's really simple, finely diced onion can go in,
or thrown over the counter, whichever you prefer.
A bit of finely diced celery. If you don't have celery you can use leek,
and a bit of carrot.
Now this is where you need to be a little bit patient.
You want to keep stirring and turning them over in the fat and the oil from the sausage,
the chilli oil, the bit of butter, the bit of oil and you want to cook these quite slowly
and gently.
And then a herb of choice, you don't need to have any I just tend to have a bunch of
it lying around, fresh thyme.
I'm not going to take it off the stalks this time, I'm just going to put the whole bit
in like that.
This will really cook down slowly with the vegetables and release it's beautiful flavour.
So while this is cooking off slowly and becoming all juicy and caramelised,
I'm going to get on with my spices for this.
Now this is a huge pestle and mortar, If you don't have it a little bowl with a rolling
pin, just be careful not to go and break your best china.
And these are fennel seeds.
Look a little bit like cumin seeds but you can tell the difference, A by the
smell, and B, because these have a tiny little crescent
shape to them and they're slightly stripy.
So sort of a teaspoon full, maybe a little bit more go in.
And then because this is a chilli stew I'm going to add a few chilli flakes,
again if you don't have these and you have fresh chilli
you can add it when you add the garlic and fry it then.
So now for a little bit of extra abrasion, to get this going a pinch of salt.
It's always handy in a pestle and mortar to add a pinch of salt and it just helps grind
everything down.
So now these have become beautifully soft and are starting to take on that colour and
develop some real sweetness, I'm going to add my slivers of garlic.
And then again, just like your garlic you need to cook out,
you need to cook out your spices. Whenever you're making a curry, or anything
like that, cooking out your spices stops them from tasting
raw and floury almost.
So I'm going to take a bit of my crushed fennel and chilli,
sprinkle that over.
As I've crushed that fennel seed you can smell the aniseed taking over.
And you want to cook those for a minute or two.
It will become really fragrant.
So now this has all cooked off you can really smell the fennel and the garlic coming through.
Now it's time to add the tomatoes. These are just big plum tomatoes, roughly
chopped, there's nothing neat and precise about this
You can use tin, you can use cherry whatever you've got lying around really.
So they go in.
So you just want to cook these and soften them
and they'll break down, all the seeds and the juices provide,
I think, delicious flavour.
Just a note about chilli, I've cooked the chilli seeds out quite well in here,
if chilli is cooked out properly you should get a warmth in the front of your mouth and
it shouldn't cathc you at the back as through it's choking you to death on the way down.
So if you can cook chilli out for a long time and then you won't get that,
at the back of your throat.
You might get it as you're cooking but not when yo'ure eating.
You'll notice the tomatoes are just starting to cook down,
you can see the juices being released, picking up the flavours from the carrot and the fennel
seeds and everything that's in that pan.
And then we just need a little bit more liquid. I know traditional stews are sort of red wine
and beef and they're quite heavy.
The nice thing about this is it's quite light. If you've got a bit of white wine you can
add a bit of a slosh in here, If you've got red wine crack on,
but I'm just going to keep this almost child friendly,
if there wasn't any chilli in it, and add a bit of stock. This is just chicken
So I'm just going to let this cook down for a minute whilst I get my sausages ready.
And because they're not cooked in the middle I'm going to use a red board.
These are just the sausages we browned off earlier,
and I'm just going to cook them each into 3 or 4 slices.
So the cout sausages now just get popped into this beautiful sauce.
It's really rustic, very Italian in its style,
and then you literally just leave it for 10 minutes to bubble away,
the sauce will become thick and reduce and the sausages will cook through.
So this has been bubbling away for about 10 minutes,
the sausages are perfectly cooked and the sauce has thickened.
It almost acts as a gravy.
Now I'm going to serve this with a little bit of mash potato
and just to finish it off I'm going to add a little bit of chopped parsley.
again if you don't have any don't worry, you can use chives or anything really,
or leave it out completely.
Adding a fresh herb at the end of any dish, especially a stew because they're not the
most attractive if things let's be honest, it just really lifts the colours,
and freshens up everything.
And then off the heat, and you can serve.
And then finally an extra little bit of parsley.
This really is a delicious way to use sausages, and a perfect winter warmer.
I really hope you can join me for my next winter warmer recipe.
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