This Ponche-Braised Breakfast Sausage Recipe was created in partnership with Farmer John. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this blog possible.
This next month is going to be a doozy. Cocktail parties, Christmas concerts, tamaladas, you name it, it’s happening and I love them all, but my most favorite holiday celebrations are the brunches! (I’m putting that in plural with hopes that there will be more than one).
In collaboration with my friends at Farmer John, I’ve put together my very own Mexican Holiday Brunch menu for your reading and cooking enjoyment. I had so much fun tucking in little parts of our family traditions into the recipes. This Ponche-Braised Sausage is made with Farmer John Original Sausage Links and my family’s traditional Ponche Navideño. It is particularly good with it’s hints of salty, warm spice, and sweet and goes well with everything from waffles to scambled eggs to sweet rolls.
How To Make Ponche-Braised Breakfast Sausage
This Ponche-Braised Breakfast Sausage recipe all starts with Ponche Navideño or Warm Mexican Mulled Fruit Punch. Ponche is like the hot apple cider or mulled wine of Mexico (except non-alcoholic). It has the familiar flavors of cinnamon, apple, and pear but is made with tropical fruits too as well as tamarind, hibiscus, and a special fruit called tejocote which adds a richness to the punch.
You might be thinking to yourself, why would I make this big batch of mulled fruit punch for one sausage recipe but here’s the thing; even though you will only use 1 cup of it for the sausage, you can serve the remaining punch alongside your brunch or anytime during the holiday season. Not to mention the ponche makes the house smell incredible.
For the sausage, you’ll strain out 1 cup of the ponche and reduce it by half until it is slightly thickened and syrupy. The sausage links get braised in the ponche syrup until they are infused in the sweet fruit and warm spices. I like to add a few pieces of fruit from the ponche to the sausage as it cooks. The caramelized fruit bits are an extra-special treat.
For the Ponche:
- 12 cups water
- 1 pound sugarcane (sliced)
- 8 ounces piloncillo (2 medium cones or ¾ cup dark brown sugar, packed)
- 2 sticks Mexican Canela or 3 cinnamon sticks
- ¼ cup tamarind paste
- 2 guavas (quartered)
- 1 apple (cored and chopped)
- 1 pear (cored and chopped)
- 2 oranges (sliced)
- ½ cup dried hibiscus flowers (rinsed)
- ½ pound tejocotes (rinsed but left whole)
For the Braised Sausage
- 1 cup strained ponche
- 1 pound 2 packages Farmer John® Classic Pork Sausage Links
For the Ponche
- Combine all ingredients in a large stock pot and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Stir to dissolve the piloncillo and reduce heat to medium low.
- Gently simmer until fruit softens and flavors have melded, about 1 hour.
- Ponche can be made up to a week in advance. Cool completely and store in covered containers in the refrigerator until ready to use.
For the Sausage
- Heat oven to 400°F.
- Strain 1 cup of ponche into a small saucepan. Bring ponche to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil until liquid is thickened and reduced by half.
- Meanwhile, place Farmer John® Classic Pork Sausage Links in a medium baking dish, separating the links. Add pieces of fruit (the oranges are especially good) from the ponche if you'd like.
- Pour reduced ponche over the sausage and braise in oven until golden and cooked through, about 40 minutes. Serve right away with waffles, fruit, and scrambled eggs.
One last thing…
What do you think? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram! Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me.
Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!