This dish of pork sausages with Brussels sprouts and cannellini beans in a hot balsamic vinaigrette was a really simple midweek dinner that I chucked together the other night, and that I didn’t think was particularly impressive. However, the photo got a lot of likes on Twitter and Instagram, and (perhaps more importantly) it was especially delicious, and really felt rather fancy. I realise that it actually was impressive; it just wasn’t complicated. I’m looking forward to making this again for Adrian, but in the meantime, I’ll share here how I made it so that you can enjoy it too!
- 6 nice fat pork sausages (you can use beef or chicken sausages if you don’t eat pork, or plant-based sausages if you don’t eat meat at all)
- 250 g Brussels sprouts, washed (and trimmed if necessary)
- 400 g can of cannellini beans (white beans, haricot beans etc), drained and, if you can be bothered, rinsed
- 3 tbsp olive oil (not extra virgin, unless it’s all you have)
- 1 – 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp dried mixed herbs (optional)
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
What to do
Preheat the oven to 220C (200C if you have a fan oven, gas mark 7 if you have a gas oven, 425F if you live in America, which I don’t recommend, but I’m aware some of you have little choice in the matter).
Start with the balsamic vinaigrette. In a bowl, dissolve the salt in the vinegar, along with the black pepper and herbs (they won’t dissolve, but chuck ’em in now anyway), before whisking in the olive oil to form an emulsion. Tip in the beans and the sprouts and toss them until everything is nicely coated with the oil and vinegar emulsion.
Then tumble that mixture into a baking pan (mine is about 24 cm square, but the size isn’t that important), and spread it so that it’s more or less a single layer, and sit the sausages on top before putting it in the preheated oven to bake for 35 minutes.
Then, well, eat it!