It’s been bitterly cold and wet for the last ten days and my family has well and truly embraced comfort food. Soups, braises, curries, mashed potatoes and to top it all off crisp and flaky home-made sausage rolls. Hearty, moreish and very filling there really isn’t anything dainty about these at all.
When my children were younger I would cut each sausage filled pastry log into bite sized quarters and serve them with tomato relish at birthday parties and family get togethers. As they grew a little older those same logs were cut into half for a more substantial offering. These days I’ve graduated to just baking them whole to satisfy their teenage sized appetites. No matter the size they always seem to inhale them in just one mouth cramming bite.
The recipe below makes 10 very long sausage rolls, which I hasten to add is probably equivalent to 20 regular sized or 40 party sized rolls. These freeze beautifully once baked and can quickly be heated and crisped up in a hot oven. The extras never ever go astray and often don’t make it to the freezer. For convenience I use store bought square puff pastry sheets. Sliced in half, they are the perfect size to be rolled around a half cup measure of sausage filling. Use any variation of minced meat and herbs that takes your fancy. As a throwback to my children’s toddler days I often also add “hidden” vegetables in the form of a little grated carrot and zucchini. Today I opted for a chicken, veal and bacon version studded with a little pistachio for crunch. On Australia Day I often pack a patriotic spiced lamb sausage roll for our family picnics.
Chicken,Veal And Bacon Sausage Rolls
Makes 10 very long, 20 large or 40 party sized sausage rolls
500g chicken mince
500g veal mince
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small brown onion, finely chopped
250g bacon, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 carrot, peeled and grated
1 zucchini, peeled and grated
2 sprigs fresh tarragon, leaves stripped from stem and finely chopped
1/3 bunch parsley, leaves stripped from stem and finely chopped
1/3 bunch fresh chives, finely chopped
1 ½ cups fresh breadcrumbs
50g pistachio nuts, coarsely chopped
1 large egg, lightly beaten
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
5 sheets frozen puff pastry, partially thawed, halved
1 egg, lightly beaten, for the egg wash
1/4 cup sesame seeds
PREHEAT oven to 200°C/180°C fan-forced. Line 2 baking trays with baking paper.
HEAT oil in frying pan over medium heat. Add onion, bacon and garlic. Cook, stirring, for 4 minutes until bacon is lightly golden. Remove from heat, stir through the grated carrot and zucchini and set aside to cool a little.
ADD breadcrumbs, pistachios, parsley, tarragon and chives. Stir to combine. Season with a little sea salt and pepper.
CRUMBLE chicken and veal mince into a large mixing bowl. Add the onion-bacon-pistachio-breadcrumb-herb-vegetable mixture together with a lightly beaten egg. Mix until well combined. I like to use clean hands for this step. Season with a little more salt and pepper.
CUT each square pastry sheet in half so you have 10 rectangular sheets
TAKE ½ cup of the mince mixture, form into a sausage shape with your hands, then place on the long edge of the pastry sheet. Brush the opposite edge with a little egg wash.
ROLL up pastry to enclose filling. Place roll seam-side down on prepared oven trays
REPEAT with remaining mince mixture, pastry and egg to make 10 extra long rolls. These can be cut in half to make regular sized rolls or quarters to make party sized rolls.
BRUSH the tops of the sausage rolls with remaining egg wash. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
BAKE for 25 to 30 minutes, swapping trays halfway through cooking time, or until golden and puffed. Stand for 5 minutes before serving. These sausage rolls can be baked and frozen for future use.