After fantasising about sausage rolls all week, I decided that something had to be done. On a sunny, warm Sunday after my morning Pilates class, I dropped by Woolworths and picked up half a kilo of some beautiful free range pork mince.
I prefer pork mince over beef a lot of the time as beef sometimes has quite an ‘overly-meaty’, overpowering flavour to it. Pork tends to be a little sweeter, and I wanted to experiment with that ideal combination of pork and fennel.
I have to say though, this recipe can be a bit fiddly. I made up the recipe as I went, with a general idea of what goes into sausage roll mince but also wanting to make sure they stayed nice and moist so added a few things that I usually do with my recipe for meatballs. As a result, the mixture was beautiful but some of the juices also seeped out and made the bottoms wet (cue raised eyebrow) during baking time. I was stumped for a bit, but then simply turned them over on the baking trays and allowed the bottoms to bake for about 10 minutes or so at the same temperature, and they quickly dried out and the pastry became crispy. I would hesitate about omitting any liquid content from the list of ingredients below, as the mixture may become a bit too dry. And really, if it’s as simple as flipping them over, why wouldn’t you just do that?
These were ridiculously good. And if you need any more confirmation, my boss ate one and stated:
” That was as good as…if not better than those at Black Star Pastry.”
Well I was well and truly chuffed after that comment
An original recipe by Confessions of a Glutton:
To make about 24 mini sausage rolls, you will need:
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil;
- 1/2 kilo pork mince;
- 1/2 bulb fennel, finely chopped;
- 1/2 brown onion, finely chopped;
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped;
- 1 egg, lightly whisked;
- 1 slice sourdough bread, crust removed;
- 80ml milk;
- 100g pancetta or bacon, chopped;
- 3 sheets ready-made frozen puff pastry, thawed;
- 1 egg, lightly whisked for glazing;
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds;
- 1 tablespoon white sesame seeds;
- Tomato relish, to serve.
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celcius. Line three baking trays with baking paper.
Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and add the onion, fennel, garlic and pancetta, cooking for 5-8 minutes or until onion and fennel is translucent. Remove from heat and cool.
In a small, microwave-proof bowl, tear up the piece of sourdough and pour over the milk. Microwave on short 10 second bursts until all of the milk is absorbed and mash the bread with a fork. Place to one side to cool.
Add the fennel mix, bread mix and the whisked egg to the pork mince and season generously with salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly and the mixture should stick together easily.
Lay out your thawed sheets of pastry and cut into half. Spoon a line of sausage mixture down the centre of one half, the width of a third of the halved pastry sheet. Brush both sides of the sheet with the whisked egg.
Gently pick up one side of the pastry and roll it tightly over the sausage mixture to meet the other side of the pastry. Slice into half and then both halves into half again (to make four from a roll) and lay on the lined baking trays. Repeat with remaining sausage mixture and brush the tops of the rolls with egg mixture. Scatter with fennel seeds and sesame seeds.
Bake in the preheated oven for 20-30 minutes or until puffed and golden. If the bottoms are wet, flip the sausage rolls over and bake for a further 5-10 minutes until lightly browned.
Best served immediately with warm tomato relish. I challenge you to just stop at one
Have a great and safe weekend! Look out for my start of spring posts next week xx