Middle-eastern nearly devils on horseback for lunch, or a light supper

“I don’t normally like dates much,” ruminated the Saucy Dressings’ chief taster, as he tasted and chewed. “But in this they are rather good” he concluded, “you don’t really taste the dates, they just make it richer”.

This dish is a sort of beefed up…. or more probably porked up version of devils on horseback. If you have a butcher who offers an array of sausages I would choose pork with apple for choice – the fruity apple goes well with the dates or prunes.


Serve with an avocado and baby gem salad with lots of oily, mustardy dressing

In any case this is a quick lunch, which goes particularly well with an avocado and baby gem salad with lots of oily, mustardy dressing – if there are two of you – one avocado and one baby gem will do the trick. And the dressing could be made of one tbsp of sherry vinegar, five tablespoons of olive oil, salt, pepper, and two generous tsps. of grainy mustard.


Pair it with a gin tonica… or a damson gin

If you happen to be eating this in the evening it goes very well with a gin tonica made with a juniper-rich and robust gin such as Hayman’s London Dry, Plymouth or Aviation diluted with a Fevertree aromatic tonic…. for more on the gin tonica, follow this link.

Obviously the prunes (dried plums) also go rather well with their damson cousins in a damson gin.


Recipe for middle-eastern nearly devils on horseback with juniper and gin for lunch or a light supper

For two – one man-sized portion (two sausages) and one lady-like one (one sausage)


  • 3 sausages – ideally pork and apple
  • 4 Medjool dates, or dried prunes
  • 3 slices of bacon
  • 4 tbsp pomegranate molasses
  • grinding of pepper – ideally Indonesian long pepper… or a few flakes of Isot pepper might go well
  • 2 tbsp gin
  • a few sage leaves
  • a few juniper berries
  • some sprigs of rosemary


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Fry the sausages until the skins start to caramelise, ideally in a small frying pan from which you can jettison the handle, and put in the oven. (The ingenio set is brilliant for this).
  3. Meanwhile stone the prunes or dates, and chop roughly on a board. Snip the sage leaves into this mix. Drop in the juniper berries. Mix in half the pomegranate molasses. Grind over some pepper.
  4. Leave the sausages to cool a little, then wrap in the bacon, cramming in the stuffing as you go.
  5. Put into a snug ovenproof container with the rest of the pomegranate molasses and the gin for about twenty minutes – until it’s hot and bubbling.
  6. Garnish with the sprigs of rosemary, and serve with the mustardy avocado salad, and some additional mustard.


For how to make devils on horseback and other smoky delights follow this link.


Below, very classic 60s, Cilla Black introduces Donovan singing Jennifer Juniper:




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