A great savoury snack in festive form! Pork and apple sausage rolls, shaped like a traditional Christmas cracker!
I couldn’t really tell you why, but sausage rolls have always been apart of my family Christmas. They’re made for the boxing day buffet, but are definitely eaten before. Sometimes so much that a new batch is required! Sausage rolls aren’t just for picnics guys!!
With that in mind I wanted to create a more festive filling, anddd mix up the shape a little!! These took me a few tries to get right, and to be honest they could probably still be more refined. But! At the end of the day, sausage rolls are meant to be a little rustic. And nobody needs too much extra stress at Christmas!
I love the combo of pork and apple, so so delicious. But the pastry for me is where its at. Its so light and flaky! Just DELICIOUS.
So lets get to the making!
How do you make rough-puff pastry?
Rough-puff is basically a cheats puff pastry, which I pretty much make exclusively. Real puff pastry is very time-consuming, and when you’re making sausage rolls. You want it to be fairly straightforward.
So all you do, is mix the flour, salt and cubed butter into a very rough dough. The idea is to keep the lumps of butter intact, as this is what makes your delicious pastry so flaky! You then need to roll it out and then fold it up like a letter. This is repeated before its popped into the fridge to firm up. You want to keep the butter as cool as possible, so creating these in Winter is actually perfect!
The final step is to roll and fold twice more before chilling again. Then its ready to use!
Turning sausage rolls into a Christmas cracker!
So once your pastry is made and chilling, you can turn to the filling. I like to cook my onions before adding them to a large bowl and combining with all the other filling ingredients. When it comes to sausage roll filling, I always find it much easier to mix with my hands. Get really stuck in there and mix it thoroughly! A spoon will do, but its much easier by hand.
Pork & Apple really are a gorgeous pairing, and suitably festive in my view with apple sauce on lots of Christmas tables! Also a top tip! If you can’t get a hold of sausagemeat, just buy a pack of plain sausages and remove the filling from the skins! It sometimes works out cheaper that way too!
So you have your pastry and your filling, now what.
Firstly you need to roll out the pastry to a large rectangle, and then divide into three rows. Each row is then cut into 4 large squares, to be able to create 12 Christmas cracker rolls.
Divide your filling evenly between each square, and then fold over the pastry to create a seam – you’ll use beaten egg to help it stick! Then roll them all over to the seam is underneath. This is where you can create your cracker edges! Get a pair of scissors, and snip little triangles out of both ends of the rolls. You’ll soon get the hang of it, and it shouldnt take too long at all!
And ta dahh! All thats left is to bake and then ENJOY! I added little twine bows to add to the Christmas cracker effect, but that is purely decorational!
These taste best warm but they also last really well in the fridge (if they last that long!), and you can always warm them up in the oven again if needed. The perfect savoury bake to see you through the festive period!
On with the recipe!
Christmas Cracker Sausage Rolls
- 200 g plain flour
- 1 pinch of salt
- 200 g unsalted butter cold and cubed
- 100 ml ice-cold water
- 2 small red onions
- 270 g sausagemeat
- 1 large egg
- 40 g dried breadcrumbs
- 1 tsp mixed herbs
- 1/2 tsp garlic granules
- 2 small Granny Smith apples 145g once peeled/cored
- 1 large egg
- For the pastry: Put the flour and salt into a large bowl. Add the cubed butter and using a blunt knife roughly mix the butter into the flour. You want to maintain lumps of butter, so don’t mix too hard. Pour in half of the water and stir to combine, then pour in the remaining water until the mixture just comes together (you may not need all the water).
- Tip the mixture out onto a floured work surface and roll into a long rectangle with the short edge facing you. You want it to be around 15cmx45cm. Then fold the top third of the dough down over the middle third, and fold the bottom third up over the two-thirds, as if you are folding a letter. Turn the dough 90 degrees so the open ends are facing you and repeat the rolling and folding process. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes, then repeat the rolling and folding process twice more, before chilling again for 1hour.
- Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan and place baking paper over a large baking tray.
- For the filling: Firstly dice the red onions and place in a large saucepan over a medium-high heat with a little oil and cook until softened. Then set aside to cool. In a large bowl add the sausagemeat, egg, breadcrumbs, mixed herbs, garlic granules and combine thoroughly – it may be easier to use your hands. Peel, core and finely chop the apples and add to the mix until combined. Then season well.
- To assemble: Roll the chilled pastry out into a large rectangle – approx. 35x50cm. Then divide into three rows, and divide these into 4 squares. You will end up with 12 squares of pastry. Divide the sausagemeat mixture between these squares, placing them in a sausage shape in the middle. Leaving a large gap to the right and left, and a smaller gap at the top and bottom.
- Using a pastry brush, brush the beaten egg on all the exposed pastry. Then for each pastry square, fold the right side over the sausage filling and then the left. Pressing down to seal. Then roll each over, so the seam is now at the bottom. Finally, using scissors cut small triangles out of each end of the sausage rolls to create the cracker shape – it may be easier to pick each roll up to do this.
- Place the rolls onto the baking tray and brush the remaining beaten egg over each sausage roll. Bake for 35mins until golden brown. Leave to cool a little, then enjoy.