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Three leftover sausages

Sausage and veg barley risotto

We had university friends to stay at the weekend and an obigatory fried breakfast was on the menu on sunday morning, following a night of wine, beer and in the boys’ case, a couple too many whiskies. Three leftover sausages remained. One of my pet hates in life is wasting food and I pride myself on my ability to create rather lovely meals from forgotten vegetables, lonely half finished packs of dried goods and perhaps a tin of something from the back of the cupboard. This recipe emerged from a little experimenting and it’s a real winter warmer that’s worth a try…

Sausage, red lentil and barley risotto with chilli and vegetables

Serves 4

Ingredients

– Three sausages cut into slices
– 200g pearl barley
– 80g dried red lentils
– 3 carrots, peeled roughly chopped
– 1 red pepper, chopped
– 150g mushrooms, chopped
– 1 red onion roughly chopped
– 400g tin plum tomatoes
– 1 red chilli chopped (seeds kept in if you like it spicy!)
– 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
– 500ml vegetable stock
– 1 tsp tomato puree
– Salt and pepper to taste
– A little olive oil

Method

1. Drizzle a little olive oil into a large pan and when hot, add the chopped sausages. When browned, remove with a slotted spoon
2. Put the chopped onion into the pan and turn down the heat. Allow to soften for 3 minutes or so, stirring every so often before adding in the garlic and chilli. Cook for a further 2 minutes, stirring regularly
3. Stir in the chopped pepper, mushrooms and carrots. Keep stirring for a minute then add in the lentils and barley
4. Stir this mixture thoroughly for another minute before adding in the tomatoes, stock and tomato puree. Bring to the boil, then turn the pan down to a simmer
5. Allow to bubble away for around 35 minutes or until the pearl barley is ‘al dente’
6. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve in small warm bowls This is a great recipe for using up bits of vegetables in the fridge. Courgette, celery and sweet potato would also work nicely in this and I think torn up pieces of roast chicken would be a great alternative to the sausage. Just add this in add the very end and warm through before serving. This is a recipe that makes me smile at winter time.

A bowl of sausage chilli and barley risotto

Sausage, vegetable and chilli barley risotto

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