For a hearty family dinner try this rustic pearl barley and Cumberland sausage stew. It's packed with a medley of vegetables for a delicious dish that's perfect for sharing on chilly nights.
- Heat the oil in a large, shallow casserole dish with a lid set over a medium-high heat. Add the sausages and cook for 8-10 minutes, turning every so often, until golden. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Add the onion, carrots, celery, bay leaf and thyme sprigs to the pan. Season and cook for 5-7 minutes, until the vegetables are just beginning to soften. Add the garlic, fennel and chilli; cook for 2 minutes more.
- Stir in the tomatoes, stock, pearl barley and lemon zest. Return the sausages to the pan. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, partially cover with the lid and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring frequently. If the mixture starts to looks dry, add a little water.
- Just before serving, check the seasoning and adjust to taste.
Freezing and defrosting guidelines
Cook as instructed and allow to cool completely. Then transfer to an airtight, freezer-safe container, seal and freeze for up to 1-3 months.
To serve, defrost thoroughly in the fridge overnight before reheating. To reheat and serve, place in a pan over a medium heat, stirring occasionally until the dish is heated through.
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For top tips on protecting you and your family when preparing raw meat and poultry, visit Food Safety in the Home.