One-pot life is coming round again and I couldn’t be happier. Well, nearly one-pot, there are sausages to be had here. This very cheap stew is great to take to work in a flask, or have at home as the winter chill creeps in.
Why is this eco?
Firstly, because I’m using veggie sausages. Quorn sausages are one option, although not vegan, if that’s what you’re looking for, as they contain a small amount of (free range) egg white.
Quorn as a company is really fabulous at reducing carbon in its production chain, and is the only fake meat in the world to get Carbon Trust certification, which is the gold stamp of good carbon practices. Quorn is much friendlier in terms of greenhouse gases than meat.
There isn’t an exact carbon footprint calculation of Quorn sausages but the company does say ‘Quorn products can have a carbon footprint up to 13 times lower than beef and 4 times lower than chicken’ in its 2017 sustainability report. Pork sits somewhere between the carbon footprint of beef and chicken, so the footprint of Quorn sausages is likely to be somewhere between 4 to 13 times lower than regular sausages.
Linda McCartney sausages, however, are made of soya. This would be fine if there was some kind of sustainable certification to say the soya was not causing deforestation or destruction of biodiverse regions such as the Brazilian Cerrado or the Amazon.
But there isn’t. When I emailed the company, they said simply that they sourced their soya from ‘the Americas’.
Seeing as thousands of square kilometres of lovely biodiverse, carbon-absorbing land have been razed just to grow soy over the last few decades in South America, this does not bode well. I’ve asked for more precise information and asked for comment.
Why is deforestation bad? It accounts for 11% of man-made greenhouse gas emissions, more than 1 billion people depend on forests for their livelihoods and it is causing the extinction of animals. Every year we continue to lose another 30,000 square kilometres of forest – equivalent to the size of England.
So, until I know that Linda’s sausages aren’t contributing to deforestation, I absolutely cannot recommend the brand. However, it is worth pointing out that most chicken and beef that we eat is also fed on soya, which is also often uncertified and is an even less efficient use of energy.
Rant over, back to the recipe!
- 2 tbsps veg or sunflower oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 3cm piece of ginger, finely chopped
- 3 leeks, sliced into 1 cm pieces
- 1 big potato cut into 2cm dice
- 2 big carrots, cut into 2 cm dice
- 600ml veg stock (I used two Knorr cubes)
- Chilli flakes, as much as you can handle
- 125g yellow split peas
- 2 x 400g tinned tomatoes
- 2 tbsps tomato puree
- 6 veggie sausages
- Fresh coriander, finely chopped
- Heat the oil in a large casserole pot. Over a medium heat, fry the onion, garlic and ginger for 2 minutes. Add the leek, potato and carrot and sweat for 2 more minutes. Add the stock, chilli, split peas, tomatoes and tomato puree.
- Preheat the oven to the temperature needed to cook the veggie sausages.
- Cook the stew over a high heat for 15 minutes, with no lid. Stir frequently to check nothing is sticking to the bottom.
- Turn the heat down low and simmer for 30 minutes, in the meantime cook the sausages for the amount of time specified on the packet. When they’re cooked, chop them up and add to the one-pot. Stir in the coriander and serve.