Better known for his envelope-pushing Australian dinner fare — think kangaroo tenderloin and Moreton Bay Bugs — Andrew Evans, chef-owner of the Inn at Easton on the Eastern Shore, does a bang-up job with breakfast too. The spread served in the Aboriginal art-filled dining room includes such gems as Greek yogurt parfaits, lemon crunch muffins, donuts, and sausage rolls. All are made in-house by Evans himself.
Though sausage rolls aren't an American staple, in Australia they are as ubiquitous as an Egg McMuffin. Evans grew fond of them while living and cooking in Australia. But make no mistake. This is no pedestrian pig in blanket. Evans chooses his ingredients with care. And it shows in the eating: for a morsel groaning with pork and butterfat, they are surprisingly light.
Makes 6 large or 18 bite-sized rolls
For the filling:
2 1/2 pounds ground pork (ask your butcher for a mix that's 70 percent lean and 30 percent fat. Ground pork for sausage may be used instead.)
4 shallots, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup heavy cream
Shake of salt and pepper
For the pastry:
1 package all-butter puff pastry (Evans uses Dufour semi-frozen, available at Whole Foods and specialty stores like Dean & DeLuca and Balducci's.)
For the egg wash:
1 tablespoon heavy cream
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine filling ingredients in stainless steel bowl of stand mixer. Beat with paddle attachment at medium speed until pork mixture is sticky to touch and light pink (this emulsifies the fat so that texture of the meat is light and smooth when cooked - you can use a handheld electric beater but the filling won't be as light).
The puff pastry will be 11 inches by 11 inches when you take it out of the package (follow package instructions for defrosting and unfolding); roll out to 12 inches by 12 inches. Cut pastry into 3 sections so that you have sheets that are 4 inches by 12 inches.
Divide pork mixture into thirds. Form each portion of pork into a cylinder shape and place along the length of the pastry. Pull two sides of puff pastry together and pinch with water to seal. Slice in half for two large "main course" rolls or in 2 inch segments for smaller "bite sized" rolls. (Rolls can be frozen for later use.)
Line cookie sheet with parchment and arrange rolls seam side down. Beat egg with remaining tablespoon of cream. Brush rolls and bake for 12 to 15 minutes until pastry is golden brown. Serve hot. Makes 6 large or 18 bite sized rolls.