I had picked up a packet of the most delicious beef sausages from the Hardiesmill stand at the Real Food Festival last weekend (I’ve been buying from their stand each year – I also love their pastrami) and wanted to have them as the highlight of our dinner. Frying them and serving them as a main course as is was just too simple – I wanted them in buns…with caramelised onions, yeah! And how about some balsamic vinegar mixed in with the onions too?
They came out a treat and we wolfed them down in front of the telly. I could almost pretend that I had my own barbecue. Right. Anyway, the beef sausages themselves were fantastically flavourful and were lovely paired with the sweet and sour onions. It looks like one can order them, as well as all their beef and cured beef products, from the Hardiesmill online shop.
The buns I made using this recipe; I halved it and made slightly smaller buns than the usual hot dog sized ones and ended up with enough buns for two dinners and a lunch. I accidentally overbaked them due to their diminutive size but they still came out with a soft crumb and a pleasantly crustier than expected outside.
Balsamic Caramelised Onions
Peel, halve and slice 4 large onions. Heat about 2 tbsps olive oil in a large pan/pot and dump in all the sliced onions. Turn the heat to medium-low and stir once in a while. To hasten their softening, slap a lid on for some of the time; however, you will want to slowly cook uncovered for most of the time. Don’t forget to stir once in a while! If the mixture starts sticking, add some water and scrape it up. If the mixture starts browning quickly, turn the heat lower. Patience, patience. Stir some more. Has the mass shrunk a lot? Good, you’re almost there. Season with salt and about a teaspoon of sugar. Stir and stir. When they’re brown and soft and caramelised (about 40-45 minutes), take them off the heat and stir through about 3 tsps of a good balsamic vinegar.
Now use those onions! Slice a hot dog bun lengthwise but not all the way through. Smear both cut sides with some Dijon mustard. Add a couple of tablespoons of caramelised onions and nestle the cooked beef sausage on top of them. Serve.