A Bangin’ Bangers & Beans Super-Stew

Prep Time:10 Mins, Cook Time: 35 Mins, Total Time: 45 Mins

March 19, 2016

Bangers and Beans Super Stew 2As I write this I’m happily contemplating the possible end of stew weather; the sun has shined for at least five days in the last week now, obviously barring yesterdays cold and overcast onslaught. And there’s finally some spring warmth, admittedly more than a tad chill still at night though!. Stew weather or not this is a truly child-friendly crowd pleaser of a stew that I couldn’t resist posting as we near the end of March. After much faffing around with sausage and bean hotpots and stews over the last few weeks to find a great recipe for my after-school cook club, with Frannie and Jacques my ever faithful foodie guinea pigs, I reckon this is pretty much bang on as an easy family recipe.

Uber-tasty yet reasonably high in the healthy stakes with plenty of veggies, beans and pearl barley. Quick and easy to put together mid-week, tops 45 minutes from start to finish. Budget friendly with no fancy ingredients, just the usual store cupboard and fridge staples. Most importantly the guinea pigs happily wolfed it down, beans and all, which believe was a major stewy feat, especially for bean-phobic Frannie. Though I must confess to employing a teensy cheat on the bean front. Call it baked beans, albeit low sugar and salt baked beans. But at least their familiarity with kids won’t put them off from eating beans in a stew, same goes for good ol’ bangers.

Luckily my ‘Healthy Dinners Club’ after-school cook club liked it too, a full house seven out of seven saying they ate it for their family dinner last week. Result. I’m on my final group of sessions now at Withington Primary with seven of the keenest and most enthusiastic attendees from previous sessions which is really fantastic. I may even get the opportunity to work with many of them again next year if my grant to work at Aylestone Secondary School and Broadlands Primary comes off too. Fingers crossed.

So five new dishes for my last super-group to make including this stew, my low-sugar Oaty-Licious Apple & Pear Crumble, a Chicken & Butternut Korma next week and Cheesy Chicken Dippers and easy Veggie Lasagne after Easter. In an hour and a half we prep together the entire dish to take home for their families to eat that night, with a big emphasis on safe knife skills (aka loads of veggie prep!), food hygiene and washing and drying up. The latter of which this group are beyond amazing at, yay!.

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The Good Stuff:

Carrots, Butternut Squash, Tomatoes, Pearl Barley, Baked Beans



Great For:

Toddlers, Little Kids, Big Kids, Making with Kids, Learning to Cook, Autumn, Winter, Mid Week Dinners, One Pot Wonder, Hiding Veggies



Notes:

Replace with veggies with others that you have in, parsnips, swede or pumpkin are all good too (just make sure they’re cut small to cook in the time). Or add quicker to cook peas, green beans, spinach towards the end of the cooking time.



Special Equipment:

A large Casserole Dish or heavy based Sausepan



A Bangin’ Bangers & Beans Super-Stew

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Ingredients Prep Time:10 Mins, Cook Time: 35 Mins, Total Time: 45 Mins

1 Onion
1 clove Garlic
2 Carrots
250g Butternut Squash
6 good quality Sausages
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1 400g tin Baked Beans (low salt & sugar)
1 400g tin Chopped Tomatoes
250ml Chicken Stock (from 1/2 a stock cube or stock pot)
1 large handful Pearl Barley (about 40g)
1 teaspoon dried Oregano
1 teaspoon Worcester Sauce
1 pinch Chilli Flakes, optional
1 pinch ground Black Pepper

1) Prepare all your veggies. Peel and dice the Onion into about 1 cm sized pieces; peel and crush the Garlic with a garlic crusher if you have one, if not chop into tiny pieces with a knife. Scrub then peel the Carrots and chop into thin slices (about the thickness of a pound coin). Peel the Butternut Squash, remove the seeds from the middle and cut into 2 cm chunks.

All these veggies are a little challenging to prepare for small children and are best done by older children or adults, especially the Butternut which is very tough to cut into.

2) Cut the Sausages into quarters. Now wash the chopping board very well. Make up the Chicken Stock with half a stock cube or stock pot.

3) Heat the oil in a large saucepan on a medium heat then add the diced Onion, Carrots and Sausages. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring everything around regularly.

4) Stir in the crushed Garlic and Butternut Squash and cook for 1 minute.

5) Now add the rest of the ingredients: the tin of Baked Beans, the tin of Chopped Tomatoes, Chicken Stock, Pearl Barley, Oregano, Worcester Sauce and a tiny pinch each of Chilli Flakes (if using) and Black Pepper.

6) Give everything a good stir and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes with the lid on the saucepan, stirring from time to time.

7) The stew is ready when the veggies and pearl barley are soft and tender.

Great served with Mashed Potato and for added goodliness a steamed green veggie too.

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