Got some more cranberries coming at you with another festive bake! This time I've opted for something savoury with my pork and cranberry sausage rolls. Everyone loves a good sausage roll. Buttery, flaky pastry wrapped around a hot salty nugget of meat. Very much a British classic, it could easily be the ultimate party finger food - because really, what's a party without a few sausage rolls?
Now, I know it's probably much quicker to pick up a pack of pre prepared sausage rolls from the supermarket but making them from scratch is just so much more satisfying! You get far more control with exactly what goes in them and it gives you the flexibility to be creative with flavours. To make these even easier to put together, you could use shop bought puff pastry and squeeze out the meat from your favourite sausages.
For those of you feeling a bit more adventurous, I've included the recipe for a rough puff pastry that's been seasoned with some fresh sage and black pepper. Making your own pastry can seem a bit daunting at first but just remember to keep everything nice and cold! If the pastry feels as if it's getting a bit sticky or warm, stick it in the fridge for 15 minutes to firm up before continuing.
So, back to the cranberries. They really do add such a pleasant sweetness to these sausage rolls which beautifully balances the saltiness of the pork. I took a pack of fresh, bright red cranberries and cooked them down with into a sticky sauce spiced with cinnamon and ginger - the perfect finger food for Christmas or New Years parties. Believe me when I say, you'll be very tempted to finish the lot as soon as they're out of the oven but try to resist! They're equally as wonderful once they've cooled down.
R E C I PE
250g Plain Flour
250g Butter, cold and chopped into small cubes
½ tsp Salt
2 tsp Fresh Sage, finely chopped
1 tsp Cracked Black Pepper
80ml Ice Cold water
100g Fresh Cranberries
1 Cinnamon Stick
1 tsp Ground Ginger
Squeeze of lemon
50g Fresh Breadcrumbs
Salt and Pepper
¼ tsp Cayenne Pepper
½ tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Thyme
1 tsp Sage
1 egg, beaten, to glaze
M E T H O D
To make the rough puff, sift together the flour, salt, sage and black pepper.
Work in the butter quickly with your fingertips. You should still be able to see some pieces of butter.
Add in the water and mix together to form a rough dough. Gently knead the dough briefly to bring it together and then wrap it in cling film.
Leave to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes. Once rested, lightly flour a work surface and roll the dough out into a rectangle approximately 40x20cm with the shortest side facing you.
Fold the dough into three like you would a letter. Turn the dough 90 degrees so that the seam runs away from you. This is the first turn. Roll the pastry out again into a rectangle and repeat the folding and turning process.
Wrap the dough in cling film and refrigerate for another 30 mins to let it firm up.
Give the pastry two more turns – rolling out and folding as above. Wrap it up in cling film and store in the fridge until ready to use. Preheat Oven to Gas Mark 6/200C
For the cranberry sauce, place all the ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring the mixture to the boil. Turn down the heat and allow the cranberries to simmer for 8-10 minutes until softened
Transfer to a small bowl and chill until ready to use.
Season the sausagemeat in a large bowl and mix together with the breadcrumbs until fully combined.
Dust a clean surface lightly with flour and roll out the pastry into a long rectangle approx 15cm by 80 cm and the thickness of a pound coin.
Lay three quarters of the sausagemeat along the pastry a few centimetres form the edge. Use your finger to make a groove running along the center of the sausagemeat.
Spoon the cranberries into the groove, gently pressing them into the meat. Cover the cranberries with the remaining quarter of the sausagemeat. Fold the pastry over the sausage and use the beaten egg to seal. Trim off any extra excess pastry and slice the long roll into 12 -16 smaller rolls or 8-10 bigger ones.
Brush the top of each one with some more egg wash, sprinkle with sage and black pepper and place on a baking tray. Bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes until the pastry is crisp and golden and the meat has cooked through.
Let the rolls cool slightly on a wire rack before serving.