As I told you on this week's menu plan, I've been using Gordon Ramsay's Ultimate Home Cooking for much of the inspiration for this week's meals. There are some lovely family-friendly winter warmers in there that I couldn't wait to try out, starting with this dish which I cooked for Sunday lunch in place of the usual roast. I didn't actually use red onions as I had a big bag of normal onions in the cupboard, but it was still lovely. I made a few other tweaks, dependent on what I had in the cupboards, so I'll give you both versions with my substitutions in brackets.
Gordon Ramsay's Sausage & Caramelised Red Onion Hotpot
a drizzle of olive oil (for frying)
high quality pork sausages (go for two per person, plus extras if you want leftovers)
2 red onions (or 4 brown onions)
a knob of butter
1tbsp soft brown sugar (or caster sugar)
3 thyme sprigs (or oregano sprigs)
150g button mushrooms (or 5 large mushrooms, quartered)
2tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
200ml red wine
200ml beef stock (or chicken stock)
salt, pepper, parsley
Cook the sausages in the olive oil until browned on all sides. Transfer to a plate.
Chop the mushrooms into quarters if using big ones.
Grab a tissue and get peeling and slicing all those onions !
Melt the butter in a large pan or casserole dish and add the onions, the sugar, salt, pepper and the thyme/oregano (leaves only). Cook over a low heat, stirring from time to time, for 10-15 minutes until the onions are beautifully soft and caramelised.
Toss in the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes. Add the vinegar and cook for a further 5 minutes.
Add the sausages and red wine, bring to the boil and cook for 4-5 minutes to burn off the alcohol and reduce the sauce slightly.
Add the stock, bring to the boil then transfer to the oven at 180° for 20 minutes until the sausages are cooked through and the sauce is thick. I actually didn't bother with the oven and just let it simmer away on the hob until the sauce had reduced.
Sprinkle with parsley and serve. It's gloriously rich and sticky and the sweetness of the onions and tartness of the vinegar and wine make this a wonderful winter warmer. We served it with gratin dauphinois but boiled potatoes, vegetables, mash or rice would also complement it perfectly.
I've had a bottle of balsamic vinegar lurking in the cupboard for ages, and I also used a bottle of alcohol-free red wine that we'd received in a tasting box at some point.
What's lurking in your larder/fridge/spice rack? Join in with this month's #KitchenClearout linky.
I noticed that the recipe book is only a fiver on amazon at the moment so if you're looking for a Christmas gift for a foodie-lover, you could do a lot worse !