A lovely comforting recipe. We love the addition of apple but if you don't fancy it, just leave it out!
Recipe inventor and food photographer Chava Eichner says 'One of the fastest growing areas of food manufacturing is vegan meats. They're both home-grown and imported from Europe and the US and are capable of imitating the taste and texture of a whole range of traditional recipes, if that's what you want. Pies and pasties, roasts and rashers, schnitzels and slices - the range is growing almost daily.'
It's also worth adding that vegan meats aren't 'cheating', as certain foodies would have it! Basically, all humans enjoy certain textures and flavours - eg salty, sour, sweet, chewy, soft... and vegans are no different. The important difference is that it's possible to have all these without using animal products and all that means! Vegan meats and dairy are also a good way to bridge the gap for new vegans or for those cooking for a mixed group, eg meat-eaters and vegans/veggies because they have a familiar taste, texture and shape.
There are plenty of vegan sausages around the shops: Linda McCartney is the most widely available but do try VBites, Fry's, Vegetarian Choice, Dees (GF) and other brands - the range gets better by the week!
Serving suggestions: greens of any kind would go well with this, eg spinach, shredded spring greens or kale, shredded Brussels sprouts, broccoli or purple sprouting - these can be wok-fried with a little garlic and soya sauce if you wish, or just steamed lightly. Alternatively, a salad with deep green leaves - eg rocket or watercress - and anything else you like, would go well.
Prefer home-made? No probs. Click on each link below. They are also free from TVP.
Red onion gravy 2 tbsp vegetable oil 2 red onions 1 large sprig fresh rosemary 350ml/12fl oz vegetable stock 2 tbsp soya sauce (tamari is GF) 1 level tsp brown sugar Salt Optional for a fuller flavour: ½ tsp yeast extract, eg Marmite or a glug of port, sherry or red wine (Co-op sells vegan options of these - check own-brand labels - or else visit Barnivore for all vegan booze)
Apple mustard mash 750g/1lb 10oz peeled potatoes 2 tsp vegan stock powder, eg Marigold bouillon. Alternatively, use a vegan-friendly stock cube, eg Sainsbury's Vegetable Basics 2 large eating apples 1-2 tbsp vegan margarine, eg Pure, Biona, Vitalite, Tesco. Alternatively, use a glug of olive oil 1 heaped tbsp wholegrain mustard Dairy-free milk Black pepper
1. If making home-made sausages, prepare and shape them now (see above for recipes). Chill them. 2. Make the gravy. Peel the onions and cut into thin wedges. Heat the vegetable oil in a saucepan and sauté onions over a gentle heat. Stir occasionally for about 10 minutes until soft and starting to caramelise. 3. Add the rosemary, vegetable stock, soya sauce and brown sugar. Simmer for a further 5-7 minutes and season to taste. This would be a good time to prep and cook any side vegetables you want, or make a salad. 4. While the gravy is cooking, chop the potatoes into 1inch/2cm pieces. Peel the apples, remove cores and cut into quarters. Boil potatoes and apples in just enough water to cover them in the pan. Stir in the stock powder and cook until soft. 5. When the potatoes/apples are cooked, mash thoroughly and mix in the margarine/oil, mustard and enough dairy-free milk to give a smooth consistency. Taste and season with black pepper and more salt if necessary. Keep warm. 6. Whichever sausages you're using - home-made or ready-made sausages - fry them up. For ready-mades, use the packet instructions. 7. Serve the sausages on a bed of mashed potatoes and ladle the gravy over the top.