We had decided to taste some rhone wines to kick off the cooler weather and I was excited to embrace the seasonal savoury comfort of earthy foods once again.
I decided on doing some braised leeks and sausage. I love the versatility of leeks as they can impart the needed onionness of a quick sauté, or be browned up to have a nuttiness like onion rings, or braised till their natural sweetness becomes the perfect balance of sweet and savoury.
Slice up twice the amount of leeks that you envision being your final volume as they will cook down to have the size.
The leeks are going to release their moisture and slowly start to get aromatic as they cook down. I threw the sausages in a separate frying-pan with just a little bit of oil and seared them off to give a nice flavourful crust. I picked up some lamb and bison sausages from Oyama Sausage in Granville Island but any flavour of sausage will do.
I deglazed the pan with 1/2 a cup of brandy and gave it a little flambé to deepen the flavour. Once the alcohol was burned off transfered the sausages and brandy to the leeks pot.
I added about a cup of rich homemade chicken stock and let simmer for 30 minutes with the lid off to reduce the liquid.
Check your seasoning, remove any fresh herb stalks and serve with some good crusty bread.
Next time I would make it the exact same way and layer it in a baking dish with some white beans on the bottom, the leek and sausage mixture on top and finish with some cheese and breadcrumbs in the oven.
Open a beautiful big red wine and embrace the fall weather with open arms and a full belly.