Heat the oil in a deep non-stick frying pan. Add the sausages and fry them over a moderate heat, turning occasionally, for 10 minutes or until they are lightly browned all over.
Meanwhile, start cooking the potatoes for the mash. Place the potatoes in a saucepan and pour over boiling water to cover by 5 cm (2 in). Bring back to the boil, then reduce the heat and cook for 15–20 minutes or until the potatoes are very tender.
Add the onions to the sausages and cook for a further 5 minutes or until they are golden and the sausages are nicely browned all over. Remove the sausages to a plate and set aside. Drain off the excess oil from the pan.
To make the gravy: Add the garlic, mushrooms and red pepper to the pan and cook gently for a few minutes until softened. Pour in the stock and wine and add the fruit jelly and 2 sprigs of thyme. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix the cornflour with 1 tbsp cold water and stir into the liquid in the pan. Bring to the boil, stirring until lightly thickened, then reduce the heat and return the sausages to the pan. Simmer gently for 10 minutes.
Drain the potatoes, shaking the colander or sieve to remove any excess water, and return them to their pan. Heat the milk in a small saucepan until hot, pour over the potatoes and mash until smooth. Beat in the oil, parsley and salt and pepper to taste.
To serve, divide the mash among warmed plates and top with the sausages, vegetables and gravy (discarding the thyme sprigs). Sprinkle with the leaves from the remaining thyme sprig and serve immediately.
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Some more ideas If venison sausages are unavailable, use any good-quality, high-meat-content sausages. * Turn this dish into something special for informal entertaining by using wild boar sausages, apples and cranberries. Shallow-fry the sausages in 1 tbsp oil, turning them frequently until evenly browned. Add the onions and cook as in the main recipe, then remove the sausages and onions and pour off the oil from the pan. Add 150 ml (5 fl oz) each dry cider and beef stock with 2 thickly sliced dessert apples, 2 tsp wholegrain mustard, 2 tbsp cranberry jelly and the grated zest of 1/2 orange. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and return the sausages and onions to the pan. Cook gently for 10 minutes. Add 125 g (4 1/2 oz) fresh or frozen cranberries, stir and cook gently for 5 minutes or until the fruit is just tender. Thicken the sauce with the cornflour as in the main recipe, then serve. Plus points Venison sausages contain just over half the amount of fat found in traditional pork sausages (11% fat compared with 20% fat on average). They also have a deeper, ‘meatier’ taste. The venison in the sausages provides valuable amounts of haem iron, the most easily absorbed form of iron. * Red wine is rich in flavonoids, which can help to protect against heart disease and stroke. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Pinot Noir wines, particularly from Chile, have been shown to have higher levels of flavonoids than other wines. Each serving provides B1, B6, B12, C, E, folate, niacin * A, potassium * iron, selenium, zinc Provided by: Reader's Digest