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Michela Chiappa’s bonfire night stew

If you’re braving the cold to attend a bonfire this weekend, then Michela Chiappa’s winter stew is what you need to warm you up when you get home. She’s in the kitchen today to whip up her nonna’s hearty sausage stew.

Hearty bonfire sausage stew

Serves 4



1 tablespoon olive oil

2 medium onions, peeled and diced

2 tablespoons tomato purée

500g cotechino or good-quality coarse-textured sausages, skin removed, chopped into 2.5cm pieces

1kg potatoes, peeled and cut into large pieces

1 organic chicken or beef stock cube

1 teaspoon cornflour, if needed

Fine salt 

Freshly ground

Black pepper


Leftover chunky bread

10g Parmesan

2 tbsp olive oil


1. In a heavy-bottomed pan (large enough to hold about 2 litres of water), heat the oil over a medium heat. 

2. Fry the onion with the tomato purée for about 5 minutes, until lightly golden.

3. Stir in the sausages and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until browned all over.

4. Add the potatoes and crumbled stock cube and cover with 800ml cold water.

5. Bring to the boil, cover with a lid, then lower the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the potatoes are cooked through. They are ready when they fall off the blade of a knife easily.  If the sauce is a little dry, loosen it with a splash of water; if it seems too liquid, thicken with the cornflour.

7. Whilst that’s cooking, make the croutons using any chunky, leftover bread (sourdough or baguette).  Roughly chop or tear into walnut size pieces.  Place on a baking tray and generously drizzle with olive oil and season with salt.

8. Place in a preheated oven at 180C (gas mark 4) for approximately 10-15 minutes until toasted and golden brown.

9. Remove the tray and sprinkle the croutons with grated Parmesan and put back in the oven for a few minutes until melted.

10. When the stew is cook, season with salt and pepper and serve in bowls topped with the cheesy croutons.

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