Tomato and Paprika Braised Sausages with Charred Lettuce

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Let’s talk more about simple things and speedy suppers. Now in this time of glut when markets and gardens are full of wonderful things to eat we can be indulgent, but why would we be when letting perfect and simple ingredients shine is often the best way? In summer I like to eat lighter and simpler. I feel that way generally these days. 

Summer Sunshine Captured on a Rainy Day

I eat tomatoes more than anything all through the year, but especially in summer. My kitchen garden is packed and the tomatoes are flying but I have only a few tomatoes nearing red (and over 25 tomato plants growing, so exciting!). My counter is still stacked with tomatoes of all colours shapes and sizes from my local farmers market though. Rough and tumble beef hearts, wobbly and one sided. Bright round enormous yellow tomatoes, perfectly smooth and sweet as a mango. Small pops of colour and joy in every shade, green and tiger striped, reds approaching pink and gorgeous cherry tomatoes, plump and bulging from red to yellow to purple.

Tomatoes growing in my kitchen garden

Tomatoes growing in my kitchen garden

Just one large tomato can be an instant sauce, and that is exactly what I used here. I didn’t even start it with garlic, the tomato has enough flavour and enthusiasm all of its own. The only thing I added to complement it was some smoked paprika to give it some depth and an illusion of outdoor cooking. Something primal, something of summer sun, even on a rainy day like this.  

Charred or braised lettuce is a wonderful thing. The lettuce retains its coolness, and acquires a smokey whisper, and a little wilt at the edges. This tastes terrific and goes super well with the smokey tomato flavour. 

I finished the dish with a handful of greens from the garden, you can use spinach, or herbs, whatever you like (parsley, sage, chervil would all work well). Use good sausages and all will be well. This dish benefits from its simplicity. Enjoy!


Tomato and Paprika Braised Sausages with Charred Lettuce
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Tomato and Paprika Braised Sausages with Charred Lettuce


    per person
  • approx 200g pork sausages
  • 1 beef tomato
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • a handful of greens (spinach or chard), chopped if large
  • sea salt and black pepper
  • 1 small crisp lettuce like gem
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil for frying


  • Peel the tomato (cut a small cross in the base and cover with boiling water for one minute, remove and peel). Remove the core and chop into dice.
  • Fry the sausages in their own fat (if they are not very fatty use a little oil, but there should be enough). Once browned all over add the tomatoes and the paprika, and cook for approx 25 minutes, stirring occasionally and turning the sausages every now and then to ensure that they are cooked through. Add the leaves and stir through then turn off the heat immediately. Season with salt and black pepper.
  • Cut the end off the lettuce and cut in two lengthways. Heat the tablespoon of olive oil over a medium-high heat and char the lettuce for a couple of minutes.
  • Serve the sausages with the tomato sauce with the charred lettuce on the side.
  • Enjoy!



    Written by Niamh
    Cooking and travelling, and sharing it all with you.