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Roast Sausages and Fennel

Italian-inspired Roast Sausages and Fennel is a fantastic one tray meal. Roasting fresh fennel makes it deliciously creamy and sweet, the perfect partner for juicy pork sausages.

It’s one of those perfectly cosy, early winter days. The fog has surrounded our house here in the mountains, the fire is blazing and I’ve been keeping warm by staying near the stove. It’s the ideal time of year for today’s recipe, Roast Sausages and Fennel, a simple Italian-inspired meal that is full of fabulous flavour.

So tell me more, what’s this recipe all about?

OK, it’s no secret that the flavour of fennel is best friends with pork. You’ll find this combination in loads of classic Italian recipes. I love to roast juicy Italian style pork sausages together with thick slices of fresh fennel and onion and top the whole lot with an agrodolce or sweet and sour sauce. It’s absolutely delicious.

Roast Sausages and Fennel are super easy to make!

Yes, no dishwasher in these here hills so I am all about things that can be made in one dish to minimise the time I spend washing up. You can basically toss all the ingredients here together in a roasting pan, throw them in a hot oven and then 40 minutes later you are ready to eat. Win-win.

Isn’t fennel very strongly flavoured?

I happen to love the flavour of fennel, but this recipe will convert anybody who is feeling a bit unsure. Roasting or braising the fennel in a slightly sweet and sour sauce makes the flavour of the fennel deliciously mild, sweet and almost creamy.

Do I have to brown the sausages first?

No! The combination of high heat, a sweetened marinade and cooking the sausages in the top third of the oven means that the sausages will brown all by themselves. In fact, I almost always cook sausages in the oven because I hate the mess they make in a frying pan.

On that note, use good quality sausages.

Whenever a recipe has very few ingredients, it is important to ensure they are of good quality. The best sausages for this recipe are coarsely ground high meat content Italian style sausages. Trust me, the flavour is worth it.

It’s very wet and wintery around these parts, which means I’m cooking plenty of soups, stews, roasts and using the oven to warm up the kitchen. If you like the sound of this recipe, you’ll love my Classic Hearty Chicken Stew, or try my Sweet and Spicy Devilled Sausages.

Roast Sausages and Fennel

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Can I make Roast Sausages and Fennel with sausages made from different meat?

Yes, absolutely! I’d lean toward chicken sausages as chicken is a great partner for fennel.

Can I prepare Roast Sausages and Fennel in advance?

You sure can. All braises and stews are fantastic reheated. I like to squeeze over a tiny bit of fresh lemon juice when I reheat this dish to lift the flavours.

What should I serve with Roast Sausages and Fennel?

Something about the simplicity of this dish appeals to me, so I like to serve it with simple boiled potatoes or some fresh white bread for dunking in the sauce.

I don’t drink alcohol. What can I replace it with?

In this recipe you can replace the white wine with the same quantity of freshly squeezed orange juice.


Roast Sausages and Fennell
Roast Sausages and Fennel
Roast Sausages and Fennell
Roast Sausages and Fennel

Roast Sausages and Fennel

Yield: Serves 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Italian-inspired Roast Sausages and Fennel is a fantastic one tray meal. Roasting fresh fennel makes it deliciously creamy and sweet, the perfect partner for juicy pork sausages.

Ingredients

  • 2 bulbs fennel
  • 2 onions
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 8 coarse Italian-style pork sausages
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 100ml white wine
  • 100ml chicken stock
  • 2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp mustard
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, leaves finely chopped
  • Sea salt and black pepper

Instructions

    1. PREPARE: Heat the oven to 220°C / 425°F / Gas 7 with a rack in the top third of the oven.
    2. SLICE THE VEGETABLES: Cut the fennel in half, then into thick slices lengthways. Deserve the green fronds on top. Halve and peel the onions, then cut into thick wedges.
    3. COMBINE: Scatter the fennel, onions and garlic over the base of a roasting tin. Lay the sausages on top, then drizzle over the olive oil and toss to coat.
    4. MAKE THE SAUCE: Whisk together the wine, chicken stock, vinegar, mustard and sugar. Pour over the sausages in the tin, and toss again to coat. Scatter over the fennel seeds and rosemary then season generously with salt and pepper.
    5. ROAST: Transfer the roasting tin to the preheated oven and roast for 40 - 45 minutes until the sausages are golden brown and the fennel is tender.
    6. SERVE: Scatter over the reserved fennel fronds, then serve immediately on warmed plates with fresh white bread or boiled potatoes.

      WINE RECOMMENDATION: An Italian Primitive or Chianti is lovely with this classic dish.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 209Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 11mgSodium: 273mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 3gSugar: 7gProtein: 4g

Nutrition information is calculated automatically and isn’t always accurate.

Let me know if you try this recipe in the comments below, or using the hashtag #daysofjay on Instagram.

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Jay Wadams
Jay Wadams is a cookbook author and food, architectural and landscape photographer. Jay is the author of two cookbooks: 'Tasty' (2017) and 'Simply Summer' (2019). Based in Italy 🇮🇹 Germany 🇩🇪 and Australia 🇦🇺.
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