We recently made this dish for an informal Sunday supper. The term coddle refers to a technique in which food is cooked in water below the boiling point. In this version, a slow cooker is used on low setting to accomplish the coddling. This cooking style and the contents of the dish are particularly associated with Dublin, Ireland; hence, the recipe name.
Traditional Dublin Coddle uses sliced pork sausages and rashers (thinly sliced somewhat fatty back bacon), but we found any minimally spiced sausage (in our case uncooked bratwurst) and bacon will do. Likewise, the minimal seasoning (salt, pepper, and parsley) is traditional, too. We oven roasted the bacon on a rack over a sheet pan before putting it in the crock pot. Likewise, we pan seared the sausages before assembling the dish for slow cooking. Oh, and we doubled the recipe, and it still fits into our crock pot. Apparently, the idea of adding a bottle of dark beer to the mixture for a Dublin Coddle has somewhat fallen out of favor, but that was not the case in our house! We guess you can always have the beer with the Dublin Coddle as well!
This recipe comes from Lynn Alley’s book, The Gourmet Slow Cooker (Ten Speed Press, 2003), page 45. We include the ingredients and directions here. One tip: the top layer of potatoes may take longer to cook than the directions suggest; check on it before serving. Enjoy this Irish winter comfort food!
4 slices lean bacon
1½ lbs. pork sausages (6 to 8 sausages)
2 yellow onions, sliced
2 large potatoes, peeled and sliced
2 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 cup water, hard cider, chicken stock, or beer
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
Heat a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and fry for 7 minutes, or until crisp. Using tongs, transfer to paper towels to drain.
Add the sausages to the pan and cook, turning frequently, for 10 minutes, or until browned. Using tongs, transfer to a plate. Drain any excess fat from the pan.
Add the onions to the pan and sauté, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes, or until lightly browned.
Spread half of the onions in a layer in the bottom of the slow cooker. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place half of the potatoes in a layer on top of the onions and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Lay the strips of bacon over the potatoes. Lay the sausages over the bacon. Spread the carrots over the sausages and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Spread the remaining onions over the carrots and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Top with the remaining potatoes and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Add the water or other liquid. Cover and cook on low for 5 to 6 hours, until the vegetables are very tender.
Transfer to a warmed serving dish and sprinkle with parsley. Serve immediately.
Makes 6 servings.