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You know I’m not one of those foofoo girls that gets all into making stuff for holidays, but today I am sharing a recipe for delicious Irish sausage rolls, to help you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and in honor of a wee bit of Irish heritage from my great grandparents, the O’Berrys.
I never knew my great-grandparents, but I knew the place they called home very well. I grew up spending time at my grandmother’s house who was born and raised in their house and never moved away. She and my grandfather acquired the home where they raised my mother and aunt.
Many years later, I was fortunate enough to have called their house, “home” when I lived there from 1999 to 2000. The house was also home to my nephew for a few years, which means 5 generations lived in that house. It’s the house where I learned about front porch sitting.
Oh, if those walls could talk!
St. Patrick’s Day is on Sunday this year, which means there is a little more room for celebrating since it doesn’t fall in the middle of the week. I figured you would like a yummy recipe to share with your family and friends. Irish Sausage Rolls are a fun and tasty way to celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day!
What are Irish Sausage Rolls:
An Irish sausage roll is made of an Irish style sausage rolled up inside buttery blanket of pastry dough. These sausage rolls are popular in Ireland. They are a great pub style food for parties, but they can also be made for a grab and go type breakfast or snack and can be purchased at just about any bakery you visit.
How To Make Irish Sausage:
Irish Sausage is what sets these rolls apart from other types of sausage rolls. Typically, Irish sausage rolls are made with ground pork, although it is not unusual to make them with ground pork and beef mixture. What makes Irish sausage so unique is that the ground pork is mixed with raw egg and breadcrumbs. The breadcrumbs add a subtle crispness to the sausage, while the egg gives the sausage a silky texture. Irish sausage also has an intoxicating aroma of herbs, including thyme, marjoram, basil, rosemary, parsley, sage. This blend of herbs lends a savory flavor with hints of sweet earthiness.
Traditional Irish sausages do not have large herb leaves nor are they visible within the sausage. To make the Irish sausage grind the herbs into a fine powder before mixing into the sausage.
I used my trustworthy coffee grinder to grind up the spices. A coffee grinder is an inexpensive gadget that I use all the time for grinding up spices, especially peppercorns. However, a mortar and pestle would be a great alternative, if you don’t have a coffee grinder.
The Puff Pastry:
When the sausage is well mixed it is molded into cylindrical rolls and the puff pastry is cut into strips and gently folded around the sausage to form the rolls and then brushed with egg wash to seal the dough together around the sausage.
Store-bought puff pastry sheets are the best option for making sausage rolls. Once they are thawed they are ready to go, saving you time in the kitchen. The secret to beautiful golden brown puff pastry is in the Egg Wash! Simply put, an egg wash is a mixture of beaten eggs and some sort of liquid which is brushed onto food, which makes it turn golden brown. It also acts as a glue, which helps the pastry dough hug the sausage tightly without popping open.
Learn more about egg wash HERE.
Freezing Irish Sausage Rolls
Irish sausage rolls freeze well, so if you aren’t feeding a small crowd of folks, you can make the sausage rolls and freeze them. Reheat the sausage rolls in the oven or toaster oven at a moment’s notice. This makes them a great unexpected guest appetizer!
When I made these rolls, there were too many to feed just the two of us, so I divided the batch in half. The first batch I made the rolls a little larger, which gave me 6 sausage rolls total. I wrapped the extra sausage mixture in wax paper and refrigerated it keeping a couple of days and then made more a
A word of caution: If you decide to make batches at different times, take a look at the expiration date of the ground pork and use or freeze well before the expiration date.
This was a fun recipe to make. I even pulled out my Irish necklaces and my shamrocks to embellish the serving plate for the photos.
David and I loved these Irish sausage rolls. We even tried dipping the rolls into 3 different types of mustard: regular, Dijon and spicy brown. I have to say that spicy brown mustard won out for us.
I hope you’ll try these and wash them down with a nice cold green beer.
Have a Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
Irish Sausage Rolls
- 1 pound ground pork or turkey sausage for a lighter option
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried marjoram
- ½ teaspoon dried basil
- ½ teaspoon dried rosemary
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- ½ teaspoon dried sage
- ⅛ teaspoon Kosher salt
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper fresh cracked
- 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 garlic clove grated
- ¼ teaspoon fennel seeds (optional)
- 1 egg beaten
- 2 puff pastry sheets thawed
- Egg Wash 1 egg + 1 tablespoon water beaten
- mustard for serving, optional (spicy brown or Dijon is best)
- Thaw the puff pastry, per package directions.
- Using a coffee grinder or spice grinder, grind the thyme, marjoram, basil, rosemary, parsley, sage, salt, and pepper into a fine powder.
- Combine the breadcrumbs, the ground spices, grated garlic and fennel seeds (optional) into a large mixing bowl. Use a whisk to mix well, ensuring that the garlic is well distributed throughout the breadcrumb mixture.
- Add the ground pork to the seasoned breadcrumbs and massage together gently with your fingers. Add in the egg and continue to mix until the meat mixture becomes a little tacky.
- Divide the sausage mixture into 6 equal portions (I used my kitchen scale to weigh the portions, but you can eyeball them). Using your hands, roll each portion of the sausage mixture, forming each portion into four 10-inch cylindrical shaped long sausage-shaped logs, approximately ¾ to 1 inch in diameter. Set the sausage aside.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Gently unfold the pastry sheet and place on a lightly floured surface. Cut the pastry sheet into 3 strips at the seams of the fold. Use a rolling pin, roll each strip of the pastry dough into strips 4×10 inch strips.
- Place one of the sausage rolls along the top edge of one of the rolled pastry strips. Roll the pastry dough around the meat, so that the dough overlaps by about 1-inch. Brush the dough with egg wash and seal the pastry dough together around the meat. Cut the roll into 3 equal pieces. Brush each with egg wash and cut three diagonal slits across the top. Place the sausage rolls seam side down on the parchment-lined baking sheet leaving 1 to 2 inches between each roll. Repeat the process with the remaining pork mixture and puff pastry.
- Place the sausage rolls in the preheated oven and back 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, lower the heat to 350 degrees F and bake until golden brown and the sausage is fully cooked. An instant-read thermometer should read 160 degrees F; about 5 to 10 minutes more.
- Cool slightly on a wire rack before serving. Serve warm or cold with your favorite mustard.
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