Venison sausage casserole cobbler with a liquorice and bramble gravy

Serving size: 4
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour

For the casserole
6 venison sausages
1 large onion – roughly chopped
2 sticks of celery – roughly chopped
Half a small swede – diced
One bulb of garlic cut in half through the middle
Roughly 10 small Chantenay carrots – topped but left whole
1 glass of red wine
2 teaspoons liquorice and bramble jelly
1 teaspoon corn-flour
1 teaspoon vegetable stock powder
1 pint boiling water

For the herby cobblers
500g self-raising flour
1 pinch salt
1 pinch mustard powder
1 teaspoon of mixed fresh herbs
125g butter
½ pint milk

Featured in:
January 2013

Something packed with flavour and sweetness and a dish that should last you a couple of days at least. Not only will this dish satisfy your post-Christmas, burnt-out taste buds but it will fill your home with the glorious warming aromas of aniseed, red wine and sticky sausages too.

I’m using venison sausages here for their extra richness but any kind of quality sausage will do. I’m also using a wonderful liquorice and bramble jelly by Bracken Hill Fine Foods that I picked up at the brilliant Lincoln Food and Gift Fair, but you could easily replace this with a more readily available red currant jelly – and those New Year’s resolutions can just wait until February!

Pre-heat the oven to 170C and throw the onion, garlic, celery, swede, carrots and sausages into an oven-proof dish, preferably one that can be transferred to the hob afterwards. Drizzle with a little olive oil, season and roast gently for about 30 minutes until the sausages begin to turn golden.

Transfer the glorious contents into a casserole dish leaving the juicy bits in the tin and set aside while you make the gravy by placing the roasting tin on the hot hob and add the wine, water and jelly.

Stir constantly while adding the corn-flour and stock-powder to thicken. Let it bubble away for another five minutes then pour onto the casserole.

To make the cobbler topping, place the flour, seasoning and butter into a large bowl and with your fingertips, crumble together. Add the milk and with a knife bring it all together into a rough dough.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and pat down until it’s roughly half an inch thick and cut out round shapes with a scone cutter, placing each cobbler onto the casserole. Don’t worry if there are gaps, these will fill in as the cobbler rises in the oven.

Bake for 20 minutes on 170C until risen and golden.

Eat and of course enjoy!

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