Monday, October 22, 2018

Sticky Bourbon, Brown Sugar & Dijon Glazed Polish Sausage Bites

bottle of Woodford Reserve bourbon, length of Polish sausage and slices of polish sausage
Woodford Reserve Double Oaked Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey
Being a good Kentucky girl at heart, I always have a bottle of bourbon in the house... I didn't grow up in a bourbon drinking family - in fact I never tried the traditional Bluegrass State tipple until I was in my 20's, but I've come to love this spirit for a number of things over the years, most recently cooking. If you're ever looking for a party food or starter nibble that's quick and easy to prepare and doesn't disappoint, a sausage glazed in an alcoholic beverage is almost always a winner. The brown sugar gives this recipe its caramel sticky sweetness, the dijon adds a fiery kick and the bourbon is an instant warmer with a deep flavour that can't be ignored. For some reason I can't explain, all of these bold, contrasting flavours work beautifully with a smoked Polish sausage, which to be fair has a strong enough taste of its own. It seems like there would be too much going on, but this is a chaos that works.

glazed sausage slices

I love these little bites all on their own served with toothpicks for quick nibbling, but they're also great alongside a cheeseboard and some fresh baguette slices. If you really want to turn them up a notch, serve them alongside bourbon. Neat, on the rocks or a good old fashion bourbon & branch (which just means bourbon and water) - however you prefer it, it's the obvious and perfect compliment to these tasty little bites! You can of course use whichever bourbon you prefer, but I'd feel negligent if I didn't suggest using my favourite, Woodford Reserve.

1 tablespoon regular olive oil
450g smoked Polish sausage
100ml Bourbon
3 tablespoons light brown soft sugar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1. Slice the sausage into coins and heat the oil over medium heat. Cook the sausage coins until they start to get golden and crispy around the edges. You may want to fry them in batches if your pan doesn't allow for enough space. Once golden, remove the coins to a plate.

2. If you have a lot of oil in the pan after frying and you may do depending on the fat content of the sausage you use, pour most of it out and then turn up the heat to medium-high. Pour in the bourbon. Allow it to bubble up and deglaze the pan, scraping the bottom with a wooden spoon or spatula to get all the crispy bits up from the bottom. Continue reducing the bourbon by bubbling away until it starts to look a bit syrupy and nearly evaporated.

3. Stir in the brown sugar and mustard vigorously with a wire whisk while still on the heat until all or most of the sugar lumps are smooth and it resembles a caramel glaze, then remove from the heat immediately. It will look like you don't have enough glaze to cover the sausages, but you do.

4. Add the sausage coins to the pan and toss until every piece is coated with the syrupy glaze.

4. Remove from the heat and transfer to a warmed serving dish. Serve with toothpicks.

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