A Simple Sausage Ragu

On the fourth day of last year’s Highland Show, I was running out of things to demonstrate cooking. So I went and acquired some pork sausages from one of the many stalls selling excellent ones - these were quite spicy pork ones with apple, from a prize haggis-maker in Selkirk. I then went to the Scottish Women’s Rural stand, where I had been stealing vegetables from the demonstrations throughout the last day of the show, and there tried to “acquire” a cabbage. However, I was caught in the act and informed that if I wanted any more vegetables I would have to join the Scottish Women’s Rural. So I am now a member of that, I’m happy to say.

This is a very good, simple dish, much loved by my students at Aberdeen. I used the brand Isabella’s grain mustard relish and apple jelly, but you can, of course, find other less good grained mustard. You can use any sort of sausages you want. The spicy, peasant-style Italian sausages are very good.

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  • 1 head of green cabbage or collard greens
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • 1 bunch of green onions, chopped
  • 8 well-seasoned pork sausages
  • 2 tsp whole-grained mustard
  • 2 tsp apple jelly
  • A small glass of good ale, the richer the better


Shred the cabbage and chop across. In a lidded frying pan, melt the butter and gently soften the garlic. Add the cabbage and toss until it begins to soften. Add the green onions and cook slightly.

Chop the sausages into 2-inch pieces and add these to the pan. Stir in the mustard and the apple jelly. When the sausages are slightly cooked, pour on the ale. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Serve with mashed potatoes.