They say your sense of smell is the most evocative, and on opening the oven door to this hotpot I was transported to Solihull in the early to mid-Nineties. Just as I had hoped.
There, at my grandparents’ house, I would dine impatiently on this delicious, warming and hearty supper. Grampy’s secret ingredient was dried stuffing mix, which he’d sprinkle over the top layer of potatoes to give it a herby, crispy crust.
It’s very cheap to make, being made mostly of root veg and bangers. Good sausages aren’t especially cheap if you pay full price, so I recommend raiding the Whoops! counter or turning to a bag of frozen ones.
Prep time: 10mins
Cook time: 1hr – 1hr 15mins
- 12 sausages (the best you can afford)
- 4 white potatoes
- 2 carrots
- 2 onions
- 1 celery stick
- 1tsp garlic puree
- 1 chicken stock cube
- 1 sausage casserole packet mix (80p @ ASDA)
- 2tbsp dry sage and onion stuffing mix (30p/85g)
- Finely dice the celery stick, the carrots and one of the onions, then fry in a little oil with the garlic until softened. Remove from the frying pan and season generously.
- Fry the sausages in a little oil. Do this in batches if needs be, and get good colour on the skins.
- While the sausages fry, thinly slice the second onion into half moons and separate the rings. Then, peel and thinly slice the potatoes, and set aside.
- Once cooked, cut the sausages lengthways and set aside.
- Combine the stock cube and packet mix with 2/3 pint of boiling water.
- In a casserole dish with a lid, layer first potato, then onion, then fried vegetables, and finally sausages. Now repeat, using up the last of the onion and fried veg. I used five sausages on layer one, and seven on layer two – as my dish is wider is the top.
- Top with a final layer of potato, then pour in the stock mix.
- Cover with the lid and bake in the oven at 200C for 30-45 minutes. Then, remove the lid and scatter with the sage and onion stuffing before returning to the oven, uncooked, for a further 30 minutes.
- Serve with a chunk of crusty bread to mop up the delicious sauce.