Casserole is one of my favourite winter dishes. It does take a couple of hours in the oven, but it doesn’t take much preparation. This is a good, basic recipe to get you started with casseroles.
You will need:
- a sharp knife
- a chopping board
- an oven-proof dish
- a measuring jug
- a kettle
- an oven
- oven gloves
and the ingredients (for four people):
- 4 medium carrots (about the length of your hand)
- 2 medium onions
- 4 potatoes (about the size of your fist)
- 1 large or 2 small sweet potatoes
- 8 sausages (meat or vegetarian)
- stock cube
- frozen peas (I like petits pois)
Start by turning on your oven to Gas Mark 4, 180° (160° fan).
Boil the kettle and make up about half a litre of stock. Different stock cubes vary, so make sure to read the instructions!
Put your chopped vegetables, and meat sausages if you’re using them, into your oven-proof dish. Pour in the stock. Your vegetables and sausages should be more or less covered by the liquid. If they’re not, add a little more hot water from the kettle.
Place the lid on your dish and put it into the oven. It will take about two hours to cook from here. Because of all the liquid, casserole is unlikely to burn. It’s best to stay where you can smell it, but you don’t need to watch it the whole time.
Chop your sweet potato into chunks. (More detailed instructions here: sweet potato)
After your dish has been cooking for about an hour, add your sweet potato chunks. If you’re using vegetarian sausages add these too. You can stir everything together if you want, but be careful – it’s hot!
About five minutes before you want to serve your dish, take it out of the oven and stir in the frozen peas. The peas will cook from the heat in the dish, and then you’re ready to serve!
You can create a lot of yummy variations on a good sausage casserole. You can add all sorts of different root vegetables, herbs such as sage or rosemary, and spices such as paprika. You might also want to add salt – I haven’t included any in this recipe because the stock and sausages can be salty enough by themselves.