How has summer come and gone so quickly? It seems like just yesterday we were starting to enjoy the more leisurely pace of life and the longer hours of daylight. The weather has been very cooperative this year in Boston – the heat and humidity were much more restrained this year, which makes us contemplate staying in Boston even when we’re not obligated to in a few years.
Now, our week’s vacation is done and I have to get myself psyched up for the working world tomorrow. I’ve got lunches taken care of for the next week – these sausage pinwheels should fit the bill nicely.
Back when she was a girl, my wife moved to Perth, Western Australia where she got well acquainted with the Aussie snack favorite, the sausage roll: spicy sausage wrapped up in puff pastry. Being brought up in the northeast US, I had never had such a thing, either homemade or store bought. I decided I’d like to try whipping up a batch to see what they were like.
I found a sausage seasoning mixture (see below) and added 2 tablespoons to 2 lbs of ground pork. I also found a great recipe for puff pastry that expedites the lamination process so we could get everything done in just a few hours. The dough comes out nice and flaky, not quite as fine as puff pastry, but the texture was great for an application like this. I think I’ll use this recipe for the next pie dough I create.
A great way to use these sausage pinwheels is to have them with eggs for breakfast. I took the idea one step further and made a silky, buttery Hollandaise sauce to create my own version of Eggs Benedict. We’ve got bread, right? We’ve got meat, right? Should go!
This is where the patience part of the post came in. I of course did my research on making Hollandaise sauce and what was impressed upon me most was to heat the sabayon slowly, so as to avoid scrambling the eggs. I did just that, taking a good half an hour of continuous whisking to bring the temperature of the egg and water mixture up by just a few degrees before slowly adding the clarified butter over the span of another five minutes. My patience paid off, though: the sauce came out light, silky, and slightly foamy with a great buttery flavor with just the right lemony zing. It stayed in place when I plated it over the poached eggs (another first-time endeavor for me, and more research, of course) and it photographed very nicely, if I do say so myself. I’d say it was restaurant quality! I’m quite proud of it, if you couldn’t tell.
I couldn’t let myself get older by another day and not accomplish these two kitchen basics if I wanted to call myself a cook. Now that I’ve done them, I wonder what took me so long – there’s nothing to be gained from avoiding tasks that are a little more complicated than putting a slice of toast into the toaster. I learned a few things and I can tick these items off my kitchen bucket list. Yay for accomplishments!
- 4 tsp dried parsley
- 2 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 2 tsp ground black pepper
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 2 tsp paprika
- 4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
I found that 1 tablespoon per pound was about the minimum you’d want to use in your sausage pinwheel recipe. Up the spices to up the flavor!