Thursday, March 20, 2014

St Paddy's Day

This post is a couple of days late but better late than never!  As it was St Patrick's Day on Monday I decided to cook a themed dinner.  This was easier than I expected as my boyfriend has a book about Guinness which conveniently contains some Guinness-themed recipes.  I went for sausages with Guinness gravy and colcannon (mash with cabbage and leeks).

Sausages with Guinness gravy and colcannon
For two portions you will need:
For the mash:
potatoes (I used 4 maris piper as they're good for mash)
25ml milk (or a splash - depends on how creamy you like your mash)
some butter (once again however you like your mash)
1/4 tsp English mustard powder
pinch ground nutmeg

For the gravy:
1tbsp plain flour
1tbsp butter (the same amount of butter as flour)
300ml beef stock
125ml Guinness
1tbsp tomato puree
2 tsps redcurrant jelly
1/2 tsp dried mixed herbs

4 sausages (whatever type you fancy - we went for Sainsbury's Taste the Difference pork sausages)
clear honey for brushing
cabbage and leeks (I used 100g of ready chopped cabbage and leeks as it was easy)
3 spring onions
salt and pepper for seasoning

  1. Potatoes.  Peel and chop the potatoes then boil for around 20-25 minutes, until tender so you can cut through them easily with a normal knife.  Drain well, add the milk and butter, mash.  Then add the mustard powder nutmeg and season with salt and pepper.  Be careful with the seasoning, you can always add a little more if there's not enough but once it's in it's in!  Cover and put aside to keep warm.
  2. Gravy.  It's worth noting that this makes a lot of gravy!  You can always halve the quantities if you're not as big a fan as my boyfriend and I are.  Prepare the beef stock with the Guinness, tomato puree and redcurrant jelly and herbs.  Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the flour and cook over a gentle heat for a minute stirring rapidly.  Add the stock a little at a time, stirring constantly, making sure all the liquid is combined before adding more.  Reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes to reduce it.  When it's the consistency you want it pour it into a jug and cover if possible to keep it warm.
  3. Sausages.  Either grill them, turning frequently and brushing them with honey until golden and cooked.  Or, if like me you don't have a grill, fry them, turning constantly and smearing with honey part way through until golden and cooked through (about 10-15 mins).
  4. Veg.  Melt the remaining butter in a frying pan (or use the leftover fat and honey from the sausages), add the cabbage and leeks and cook for 5 mins until soft.  Add the spring onions and cook for another 3-4 mins.  Fold into the mash to make the colcannon.
  5. Serve.  Spoon some colcannon onto a plate and nestle two sausages into it.  Pour over the gravy and enjoy!
If you have more than one hob then you can make the gravy at the same time as you cook the potatoes then move on to the sausages while you prepare the other veg for the colcannon.  I unfortunately only have one hob so I had to make the dish in stages.

It tasted great especially washed down with some more Guinness!

Lovely day for a Guinness
There was another interesting twist to the evening.  As I was on my way to buy the ingredients for dinner I noticed that there was something in my bike basket.  That something turned out to be a rhubarb and apple pie, still in its packaging.  I spent the evening contemplating whether to try a slice, on the one hand it was free pie and on the other hand I have absolutely no idea where it came from, as there isn't a brand name on it and I didn't recognise the logo on the packaging.  In the end I decided to try a slice, it was very tasty and there was in fact nothing wrong with it as I experienced no adverse side effects!

Anyway, if anyone knows anything about the mysterious pie I'd love to know where it came from and why it ended up in my bike basket!  I've posted a picture below so you can see what it looks like, label and all.

The mysterious rhubarb and apple pie
As I am going away to Germany for a few days I won't post again until later next week.  Have a lovely weekend!

1 comment:

  1. The rhubarb and apple pie is from the Brownfield farm stall at Cambridge Sunday market. They're delicious - as you no doubt discovered yourself!