Mum's sausage and beans

This is an economical and tasty dish that Mum says originates from Réunion, an island in the Indian Ocean governed by France but widely influenced by Creole and West Indian cuisine. It’s delicious and the mincing of onions is a great idea!

By Nici Wickes
  • 20 mins preparation
  • 25 mins cooking
  • Serves 4
  • Print


  • 6 sausages (Mum used pork and fennel)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 red onions, sliced
  • 1 or 2 chilli peppers (spice level as per your taste), diced
  • 3 ripe tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tin of borlotti or pinto beans, drained
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Parmesan cheese, grated, to serve
  • Parsley, chopped, to serve


  • 1
    In a large pot, submerge the sausages in cold water and bring to the boil, simmering for about 10 minutes. Drain the sausages, pricking them to release any fat. Heat the oil in your pot and lightly brown the sausages before removing and cutting them into 1cm-thick pieces. Set aside.
  • 2
    Grate the onions into the pot and gently fry, but don't brown, for 1-2 minutes. Return sausage pieces to the pot with the onions, then add in the chilli and chopped tomatoes. Cook all together gently for about 25 minutes, then add the beans to heat through. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
  • 3
    Serve in shallow bowls with grated Parmesan and some chopped parsley.


Rather than tinned beans, I buy dry beans of all different varieties from speciality bulk stores. Soak them overnight, then cook and freeze them for when you need them. If this meal is for the children, I'd only put half a chilli in.

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