When our friend Wes tells me that these are better than Whiskey Dogs, I figure I have a winner.
I saw Nigella Lawson make these on her TV show, and was really happy to find the recipe included in her new book ‘Kitchen’.
The ginger preserve gives the sausages an unexpected sweet touch of heat (just the light bite of ginger, not like habeñeros or anything like that), and combines really well with the other ingredients. As an aside, this is the recipe I made the Garlic Oil for last week.
•1/2 cup ginger conserve – I used Mackays Spiced Ginger Preserve
•1/2 cup wholegrain mustard
•1 tbsp garlic oil
•1 tbsp soy sauce
•50 skinny breakfast sausage links – I TOTALLY misread this recipe and bought 2 packets of L’il Smokies sausages – which seemed to go over quite well – but the breakfast sausage riff is calling to me, (and I DO have some more garlic oil), so I may need to test out another batch with this option – SOON
•1 round (approx. 9 inch diameter) thick-crust sourdough or rye bread loaf, for serving
– I had planned on sourdough, but when Rich stopped at the market, all they had was rye, and all was good – maybe better, than the sourdough
Preheat the oven to 350º.
Whisk together the ginger conserve, mustard, garlic flavored oil and soy sauce in a large bowl. Add in the sausages and give it all a good stir or three to well and truly coat.
You can go ahead and cook the sausages at this point; but I like the flexibility, offered by Nigella, of turning the whole mixture into a large zip-top plastic bag, giving it a little squoosh to mix it all thoroughly, and stashing in the fridge (for up to two days), or freezer (for up to three months) until you need them. If you do freeze them, let them thaw in a bowl (to catch any leakage) in the fridge completely – at least over night, and then cook as directed below.
When you are ready for them, turn the sausage mixture into a large, foil-lined (this is VERY IMPORTANT – if you don’t use foil, you are asking for an extra (and needlessly) lengthy clean-up) baking pan. I used my large roasting pan, since I was rotating hot nibbles out for the open house one at a time, and this pan could handle everything from Cheesy Olive Bombs and stuffed wontons (recipe coming) to these little sausage-y wonders, with a fast and easy clean up in between.
Using a high-sided pan, these should bake for about 45 minutes. If you use a jelly roll pan, decrease cooking time to 30 minutes. In either case – DON’T FORGET THE FOIL!
If you opt for the bread bowl as a serving option – cut a bit of the top off your round loaf of choice, and tear out the innards (even if these look a bit messy, I found some guests searching them out as a bready nibble, so next time I’ll just place ‘em around the bread bowl on the serving platter).
Fill the bowl with the baked sausage mixture, place on a platter and pass with toothpicks for spearing.