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Sausage Casserole with Chickpeas and Veg.

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This sausage casserole is a great winter dinner that everyone in the family, old and young, will love. It’s as simple to pull together as it is delicious to eat.

I absolutely love chickpeas. The fact they have endless health benefits is a huge plus. They’re high in protein, fibre, folate and manganese which help keep cholesterol under control and aid digestion. They’re also rich in magnesium which has benefits for women who suffer with PMT before their period, and is great for the skin. So, any time I can sneak them in to our diet I do.

Being little flavour sponges, they’re delicious in curries, stews, salads. And of course in houmous which is a particular favourite of my two year old. But my own personal favourite is this sausage casserole, studded with chickpeas and vegetables in a rich and herby tomato sauce. Served with green vegetables and garlic bread to mop up the juices, what could be better?!

Lets talk sausages.

You can use any sausages you like. Some may vehemently swear that there is no match for the classic English banger, and who am I to disagree. Spicy sausages work brilliantly, although perhaps not for little mouths if your kids don’t like spicy foods yet. Herbed sausages are divine. You can even use Quorn sausages which are wonderful if you are a vegetarian or just wanting something lower in fat.

Whatever kind of sausage you use just be aware that you may need to tweak the cooking time accordingly. The last thing anyone wants is a pallid sausage…

Ingredients.

  • 500g pork sausages (or your preferred sausage)
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
  • 150g mushrooms, peeled and cut into approximately 2cm chunks
  • 150g whole cherry tomatoes
  • 1 400g can of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 200ml of chicken or veg stock
  • 120ml medium/dry white wine Tip; The alcohol will cook out of the wine, but you can leave it out completely if you are cooking for young children and have any concerns.
  • 150g canned chickpeas, rinsed
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp dried sage
  • 1 tsp dried tarragon
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

Method.

  1. Preheat your oven to 200° C (392° F).
  2. Brown the sausages in a frying pan over a medium-high heat until evenly coloured on all sides.
  3. Remove the sausages and set aside, then add the onion and red pepper to the pan, turn the heat down to medium-low and cook for 2-3 minutes until they have started to soften.
  4. Add the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.
  5. Pour in the wine, bring to a simmer and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Stir in the chopped tomatoes, stock and dried herbs and bring back to a simmer.
  7. Add the cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, sausages and chickpeas and mix well.
  8. Lay the sausages on the bottom of a casserole or baking dish, and pour over the tomato, vegetable and chickpea mixture. Tip; You can nestle the sausages on top of the mixture if you like them extra browned, but keep an eye on them to prevent burning.
  9. Place on the middle shelf in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until the sausages are cooked through.

Serving suggestion.

Allow the casserole to cool for several minutes before serving, which will allow the sauce to thicken a little. Serve with green vegetables and rice or buttery, hot garlic bread.

Photo by Honza Vojtek on Unsplash

For more recipes like this one take a look at my family friendly recipes page!

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