Breakfast Boston Beans

A killer breakfast or brunch recipe of sticky, smoky beans with griddled sausages and poached eggs

Boston beans poached egg

Nothing tastes better on a Saturday morning than sizzling sausages paired with perfectly oozy poached eggs and gorgeously sticky, saucy beans. This punchy Boston beans recipe combines all my favourite flavours. Smoky pancetta, piquant chilli, tangy Worcestershire sauce and a drizzling of indulgently sweet, sticky treacle. Divine! So naughty but oh-so-nice. A weekend breakfast or brunch recipe that’s set to wow.

Ingredients

  • 1 x 400g tin of cannellini or butter beans
  • Drizzle of olive oil
  • 1 x red onion
  • 2 x garlic cloves
  • 70g pancetta, diced
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 heaped tsp hot smoked paprika
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 2 tbsp dark treacle
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • Fresh parsley (to garnish)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2-4 x good quality sausages or chorizo sausages
  • 2 x eggs (or more, depending on your appetite!)

To make

1) Lightly boil the beans in water for about 5 minutes, just to heat them through and soften.

2) Fry the garlic and onion in the olive oil on a medium heat for a couple of minutes, until the onion has softened.

3) Add the pancetta and cook until browned.

4) Add the sugar and wait for the onions to slightly caramelise.

5) Add the paprika and cayenne pepper, together with the treacle, mustard and Worcestershire sauce and give it a good stir. It should have a thick, gooey consistency.

6) Add the tomatoes, warmed beans and a little salt and pepper. Pop a lid on the pan and leave to cook on a low heat for about 15-20 minutes and the tomatoes have reduced by half.

7) Heat the griddle pan on a high heat and start to griddle your sausages, turning often. You want a smoky, chargrilled finish so a little blackness is fine! You can grill or oven cook the sausages if you’d prefer.

8) Poach the egg in some boiling water and a little vinegar. (Here’s how to poach the perfect egg)

9) Once the beans are cooked (they should be sticky, gloopy and delicious) serve with one or two chargrilled sausages, a poached egg and a sprinkling of fresh parsley, and devour!

 

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Burns Night Bonanza

Celebrate Burns Night with some delicious Scottish recipes

Haggis with neeps and tatties - Scottish food & recipes I’m from Wales originally so celebrating Burns Night was not an important family tradition in the Griscti household. The thought of eating haggis never really appealed to me until I was at university and sharing a house with three Scots, so when planted with plateful, I naturally gave it a go. To my surprise I really loved it. It doesn’t look the most appetising of meals but on the first bite I found it to be flavoursome, light and totally moreish. A few years have passed by since my university days but I still love to celebrate Burns Night with a deliciously tasty haggis, accompanied by my own version of hearty neeps and tatties.

The haggis
We tucked into an M&S Haggis, made by Macsween of Edinburgh. It didn’t fail to impress. It was sweetly spiced, mouthwateringly tender and packed with flavour.  I was particularly impressed that I managed to convert a non-Haggis eater into a haggis lover! “It is sooooo good,” was my friend Nikki’s verdict. I felt it important to include her exact review – thank you Nikki! We both came to the conclusion that if you’re squeamish about Haggis, one bite will completely change your perception. With its light consistency and spicy flavour it almost tastes like a rich type of stuffing, or lentil-based dish. I urge any non-Haggis eaters to give it a go.

To cook the Haggis, simply wrap in foil and place into an oven-proof dish filled with about 2cm of water, then cook in the oven at 180°C for 1 hour 20 minutes. Here’s what I cooked with the haggis…



Kind-of Scottish tatties
This is my own recipe and it works so well with Haggis. It’s a rich, creamy and textured mash with an indulgent crumbly cheese topping.

1) Steam some green cabbage leaves for about 10 minutes, keep the vegetable water as stock.

2) Make your mashed potato the usual way with plenty of butter, salt and pepper but instead of adding milk, add a touch of cabbage water (approx. 2 ladlesful – but judge for yourself: you don’t want the consistency to be too runny). Then add crème fraîche instead of milk. Again judge the amount by taste – you want it to be rich and creamy but not too heavy.

3) Stir the chopped, steamed cabbage leaves into the mash mix, adding a little more cabbage water / crème fraîche if needed.

4) Chop up approx. half a red onion and stir this into the mixture. Transfer into an ovenproof dish, then grate some Cheddar cheese and cover the top of the mash, together with a sprinkling of breadcrumbs and salt and pepper.

5) Cook in the oven for about 25 minutes, until the topping is golden brown.

Caramelised balsamic carrots
1) Chop up and steam your carrots (enough for about four people) for about 10 minutes. Make sure they are not too soft, keeping a little crunch.

2) Chop up half a red onion and gently fry in some butter and a little olive oil until soft. Add a couple of spoonfuls of brown sugar then add the steamed carrots. Let the golden, sugary onions coat the carrots, then add a dash of balsamic vinegar (about 2 tablespoons). Gently cook for about 10 minutes, until the balsamic vinegar has reduced, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Serve your haggis and tatties with honey-roasted parsnips with thyme (posh neeps), and a white wine, onion gravy.

If you’d like some inspiration on foodie treats to stock up on for Burns Night, see my Scottish Food Buys on allabouty.com. Happy Burns night everyone!

Scrumptious sauerkraut with smoked sausages and potatoes

Sauerkraut sausages potatoes recipe - food ideas - dinner recipesThis is without a doubt, one of my favourite food dishes of all time. It’s a flavourfest on a plate. Pickled cabbage piled high with chunky smoked sausages and soft, fluffy potatoes. Admittedly it’s a little of an acquired taste, but if you like strong bold flavours (like myself), then like you’ll love this hearty German dish.

Even as a child, I was always partial to some of the finer things in life, especially when it came to food. Rather than eating the traditional roast chicken and veg my mum had kindly prepared for me, I would insist on devouring a bowl of olives or infuriate her by tucking into some spicy salami. I’ve always loved experimenting with worldly foods. Bearing that in mind, at a very young age I developed a complete obsession with a tasty German dish, Sauerkraut. Anything pickled is a winner in my book, but add sausages to the pan and this is pretty much the icing on my savoury cake…

What you’ll need…
Selection of Polish and German smoked sausages such as kabanos, Bratwurst and frankfurters
4-5 White potatoes
2 cloves of garlic
Jar of Sauerkraut pickled cabbage
Two teaspoons pickled capers
Bay leaf (for potatoes)

How to cook…
1. Slice the sausages into sizeable chunks and fry them off in a large pan with a drizzle of olive oil and crushed garlic. You can keep the sausages whole if you prefer.

2. Whilst the sausages are frying, pop the potatoes on to boil with a bay leaf and salt. You can either boil or mash the potatoes, depending on your personal preference. I usually boil then, in a separate pan fry them off in olive oil and garlic.

3. Once the sausages have browned slightly, add the Sauerkraut and fry off until slightly golden in colour. At this stage you can throw in the potatoes (if you choose) and the capers and mix together on a medium heat for about 10 minutes, this way you will infuse the smoky-pickled flavours. Alternatively you can mash the potato then pour the cabbage and sausage mix over the top. Season to taste and pile up those plates!