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Hairy Recipes: Festival Foods


Serves 6

A rich tasting sausage casserole with a hint of spice. We like to add a dash of wine to the sauce, but it’s very good without it too.

1-2 tbsp sunflower oil

12 good, meaty pork sausages

6 rashers rindless streaky bacon, cut into 2.5cm lengths

2 medium onions, peeled and thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed

½ -1tsp hot chilli powder or smoked paprika

400g can chopped tomatoes

300ml chicken stock, made with 1 chicken stock cube

2 tbsp tomato puree

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tbsp dark brown muscovado sugar

1 tsp dried mixed herbs

2 bay leaves

3-4 sprigs fresh thyme (optional)

100ml white wine, red wine or water

400g can butter beans or mixed beans


Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a large non-stick frying pan and fry the sausages gently for 10 minutes, turning every now and then until nicely browned all over. Transfer to a large saucepan or flame-proof casserole and set aside. Next, fry the bacon pieces in the same pan until the fat begins brown and crisp. Add to the sausages.

Put the onions in the same frying pan and fry over a medium heat for 5 minutes until beginning to soften, stirring often. You should have enough fat in the pan, but if not, add a little more oil. Add the garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes more until the onions turn pale golden brown, stirring frequently. Sprinkle over the chilli powder or smoked paprika and cook together for a few seconds more.

Stir in the tomatoes, chicken stock, tomato puree, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar and herbs. Pour over the wine, or some extra water if you’re not using wine, and bring to a simmer.  Tip carefully into the pan with the sausages and bacon. Return to a simmer, then reduce the heat, cover the pan loosely with a lid and leave to simmer very gently for 20 minutes, stirring every now and then.

Drain the beans and rinse in a sieve under running water. Stir into the casserole, and continue to cook for a further 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the sauce is thick. Adjust the seasoning to taste. Serve with thick slices of rustic bread, boiled or mashed potatoes or freshly cooked rice.


Serves 4


A great dish that most Mums used to cook every week when we were young. This is best made with lambs’ liver, but if your feeling posh, use calves’ liver instead and simmer the onions with a good slurp of marsala wine instead of making a traditional gravy.


450g lambs’ liver, sliced and fully thawed if frozen

25g butter

1 tbsp sunflower oil

2 tbsp plain flour

1 medium-large onion, peeled, halved lengthways and sliced

125g rindless streaky bacon rashers, each cut into 4-5 short lengths

1 beef stock cube

500ml just-boiled water

1-2 tsp tomato ketchup

flaked sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Rinse the lambs’ liver in a colander under cold water. Drain well on kitchen paper. Melt half the butter with the oil in a large non-stick frying pan over a high heat.

Put the flour in a large bowl and season with plenty of salt and pepper. Add half the lambs’ liver to the bowl and toss lightly in the flour to coat. Place each slice carefully in the hot fat and cook for 1-2 minutes on each side until lightly browned but not completely cooked through. Transfer to a plate. Toss the remaining liver in the seasoned flour and brown in the pan as before. Transfer to the same plate as the first batch.

Reduce the heat and melt the remaining butter in the same pan. Add the sliced onion and cook for a minute or so, stirring to separate the layers. Next, add the bacon and cook together for 8-10 minutes more or until the onion is pale golden brown and the bacon is beginning to crisp, stirring often.

Sprinkle over the flour and stir into the onion and bacon for a minute or so. Dissolve the stock cube in the just-boiled water and pour slowly into the pan, stirring constantly. Bring to a simmer and cook over a medium heat until the gravy is thickened. Add a dash of tomato ketchup and season with salt and pepper.

Return the liver to the pan and heat through in the onion gravy for 1-2 minutes until hot. Serve the liver and bacon with creamy mashed potatoes and lots of freshly cooked greens.




Makes 4  quarterpounders!!

500 gms Minced rump steak

2 rashers fatty streaky Bacon (Minced)

4 Shallots chopped fine

1tbs fresh thyme

1 clove Garlic

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Dash of Tabasco

Rapeseed oil.

1 egg yolk to bind


For serving


Slices of Swiss cheese



Beef tomatoes.


Little Gem Lettuce



Get stuck in with your hands.

In a big mixing bowl place the minced beef, minced bacon, shallots, thyme, garlic, seasoning,, and the egg yolk.

Rub everything together to a paste with your hands.


Form into burger shapes.

Paint the burgers with rapeseed oil and place in a hot frying pan or on a BBQ.

Cook until brown on the outside and just cooked in the middle.

Serve as  you wish. Do the full Monty with a toasted bun, cheese, tomato, lettuce and relish of choice.


Traditionally a dish from the coal fields of the North East, but  its not just for Underground Geordies this great one pan supper dish is just the job in front of the telly when you want a bit of comfort.



6 medium Potatoes (Sliced  thinly into rounds)

2 Onions sliced

5 carrots sliced

250 gms streaky bacon

1 tbs Vegetable oil

500 ml chicken stock

salt and pepper to taste

150 gms grated cheddar cheese



A high sided frying pan is best for this.

Heat the oil in the pan. Fry the bacon until a bit crisp and coloured. Remove and set aside.

In the remaining  bacon fat and juices, place a layer of potatoes to cover the bottom of the pan. Then a layer of onion, then a layer of carrot, then a layer of bacon rashers. Season with freshly ground pepper.

Then repeat the layers and finish with a final layer of potatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Pour on the chicken stock. Carefull not to over salt as the bacon may be salty, the stock likewise.

Cover with foil or a lid if you have one, and simmer away for about 20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.

Pre heat the grill, uncover the pan and top with the grated cheese. Grill until bubbling and golden. Serve from the pan in bowls.

Nice with some bread to mop up the juices.

Way I hinny man pet man hinny me love. It will keep ye from couping yer creels.


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