What are sausage rolls? Only a way to a Brit’s heart! Nothing says love more than a little pastry of homemade sausage spiced with sage onions wrapped around a buttery crust. I should know because I have been buying people’s love with meaty pastries for a while now.
For instance, when I first met my husband, I fed him sausage rolls. He proposed 6 months later. On my wedding day, my mom and I nervously ate Gregg’s sausage roll before squeezing into our dresses. She was so happy, that she didn’t even need Xanax for the big day (I wish I could say the same for me). When my in-laws come for a visit, I make them homemade sausage rolls as a welcome snack after hours upon hours on a plane to fight jet lag and win their favor.
Needless to say, these pastries are near and dear to my heart. Share them with someone you love, that’s if you can avoid hoarding the rolls and eating them all by yourself.
How the sausage is made
Making sausage, or at least the meat is easier than you may think. Two key things to remember when you are making sausage meat is to keep everything cold and try your best not to overwork it. Keeping it cold will not only help in cutting up and mincing the meat but will also keep the fat from melting and getting everywhere other than where you want it to go. Season your meat before mincing it as this will prevent it from getting overworked since you don’t have to further mix it in once it is minced. Other than that, just get yourself and a good and reliable meat grinder and start experimenting with different seasonings and meat mixtures.
Shortcrust pastry or puff pastry
In the past, I usually made sausage rolls with pre-made puff pastry. Not only was this super easy and super delicious but it was also SUPER flaky. So flaky in fact that I ended up wearing the sausage rolls all day. So, if you are the type of person who doesn’t mind a big mess, then go ahead and use puff pastry. I now use shortcrust pastry because I like how it is a more substantial crust to the homemade sausage inside. Shortcrust pastry makes each sausage roll a meal as opposed to a snack. Being that shortcrust pastry can be a tricky thing to master, you can always use pre-made frozen puff pastry which will save you on time and lots of pastry trouble.
Pork sausage rolls made with shortcrust pastry and homemade sausage mix made with fresh herbs and sage onions. How to do sausage rolls right. #pastry #sausage #pork #recipes
1 large onion (finely diced)
1 tbsp dried sage
1–2 tbsp oil
2 tbsp breadcrumbs
1–2 shortcrust pastry sheets
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried marjoram
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp of garlic powder
½ tsp ground nutmeg
250 g pork belly
250 g pork shoulder
Homemade sausage mix
Place pork in the freezer until cold and stiff.
Using a sharp knife, cut the pork belly and pork shoulder into small cubes no bigger than 1 cm / 0.5 in big.
Place in a large mixing bowl and add thyme, marjoram, black pepper, sea salt, garlic powder and nutmeg. Toss or mix together until everything is evenly coated in spice.
If you are using a meat grinder, add the seasoned pork to the grinder and mince. If you are not so lucky as to have a meat grinder hanging around, you can put the pork along with a splash of beer into a food processor and blitz until you have reached the desired consistency. Be warned that this can be hard on your food processor so proceed with caution. This also runs the risk of overworking the pork, so try not to overdo it.
Once everything is minced, place in the refrigerator or freezer to chill until ready to use. As always, coldness is key when it comes to making sausage, so keep it cold!
Preheat oven to 190C/375F.
Heat oil in a frying pan and cook onions and sage until translucent and lightly brown. Let cool.
When onions have cooled, add them to the sausage mixture along with the breadcrumbs and egg.
Carefully combine them all together until everything is evenly dispersed.
If using a large square of short pastry, cut the pastry sheet in half dividing it into 2 rectangular sheets.
Divide sausage meat and neatly line down the center.
Fold over pastry, seal the edges with your fingers and crimp. Lightly cut slits at the top.
Cut into pieces about 1-2 inches/ 2-4.5 cm long.
Repeat with remaining sausage mix and pastry sheets.
Place on an oven tray and lightly coat with beaten egg mixture.
Bake in the oven until pastry is golden brown and sausages filling is cooked, this should take about 30-45 min. If you are having trouble getting it golden brown, move the tray up a level or two in the oven under the top broiler for the last 5-10 minutes.
If you don’t want to go through the trouble of mincing the pork yourself, ask your butcher if they can do it for you. Most of the time, they are happy to help. If not, you can try your hand at using regular pork mince found at the store. Just make sure that it has a higher fat percentage otherwise your sausage rolls will be dry and sad.