Sausage, sage & butterbean ragù

Sausage, sage & butterbean ragù

Straightforward yet layered with flavour and texture, Ed Smith's dish neatly bridges late summer and early autumn. You could swap the beans for gnocchi or pasta such as orecchiette or conchiglie. 

4 out of 5 stars(4) Rate this recipe
  • Serves3
  • CourseMain meal
  • Prepare10 mins
  • Cook55 mins
  • Total time1 hr 5 mins

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  • 5 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 400g pack Cumberland pork sausages
  • 3 clove/s garlic, crushed
  • 200ml Full fat creme fraiche
  • ⅔ x 20g pack sage
  • 1 chunk of hard cheese rind, such as parmigiano Reggiano (optional)
  • 100g soft white breadcrumbs
  • 2 x 400g cans butterbeans (including liquid)


  1. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a medium-large pan, then gently soften the onion with a pinch of salt for 5-6 minutes. Score and remove the sausage skins. Mash the meat with a fork, then add to the onion. Increase the heat and break the meat up with a wooden spoon until it resembles chunky mince. Cook for 6-8 minutes until sizzling and catching with no pink meat remaining, then stir in 2/3 of the garlic. Add the crème fraîche, 200ml water, 3 sage sprigs and the cheese rind (if using). Simmer gently, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, pick about 24 sage leaves and heat the remaining 4 tbsp oil in a large frying pan. Add the leaves, fry for 1-1½ minutes until darkened but not brown, then use tongs to transfer to a plate. Stir the breadcrumbs into the flavoured oil. Fry gently, stirring, for 2-3 minutes until crisp and golden. Add the remaining garlic, season with salt, stir in most of the crispy sage and transfer to a bowl.

  3. Simmer the butterbeans, including the liquid from the cans, with 2 sprigs of sage and a pinch of salt for 6-8 minutes. Stir ladle of the starchy water into the sausage ragù, then divide the beans and broth between shallow bowls. Add a drizzle of olive oil to each, then spoon over the ragù, carefully removing the cheese rind. Sprinkle over plenty of fried breadcrumbs and top with the remaining crispy sage leaves.


Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe


3,699kJ/ 888kcals



Saturated Fat












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