I love a good picnic especially late summer evenings on the beach kinda picnics. Nothing says holidays more than a picnic! The Peachicks are no different, apparently picnics are like dinner but with added adventure. Unfortunately dairy and particularly soya free diets make picnics just that little bit more complicated! Luckily though the Peachicks eat pretty much anything else, the one thing they are not very keen on though is sandwiches. Yep the good old picnic staple – the sandwich doesn’t really feature on the top ten favourite picnic foods of the Peachicks shocking I know!!
So a standard picnic for us is baguette with pate (apparently no this is not a sandwich!) or a wrap with various fillings. Accompanied by cold baby potatoes, olives, ‘pink crispies’ (prawn cocktail shells), fruit of some kind, veg sticks, maybe some cous cous and definitely some cake! In the winter we often substitute the baguett/wrap for something warm wrapped in foil to keep it warm: homemade pizza, sausage rolls, pasties etc.
The theme for this month’s Tea Time Treat’s is Picnic food. Full details of this month’s challenge and how to enter your own picnic delights can be found here.. Tea Time Treats is a monthly baking blog challenge hosted alternate months by Karen of Lavender and Lovage and Janie of The Hedge Combers.
The favourite at the moment is Homemade sausage rolls. The appeal of making your own is definitely the scope for adding different flavours or ‘upgrading’ ingredients for special occasions; they work just as well with the cheapest cheapy frozen sausages as they do with fancy fresh from the butcher’s sausages. Also if you do want to make your own pastry then go for it – but with ‘lighter’ pastry being available in the chilled section of the supermarket (and 3 Peachicks running around) I can’t really see the point! The so called ‘lighter’ puff pastry although not labelled as dairy/soya free usually contains no milk ingredients although obviously check the labels (I did get caught out by the shortcrust version it contains soya flour).
Similarly you can choose the apple sauce, homemade, cheapy cheap or fancy its up to you! In this case I used the last of our Healey’s Scrumpy Apple Cyder Sauce from our last trip to Cornwall. If you are down Newquay way Healeys Cornish Cyder Farm is definitely worth the trip, they do the most amazing cream teas and the kids love looking at the animals and watching the jams being made as well as the Rattler bottling machines!
These sausage rolls can be frozen once cooked. I put them frozen in school lunchboxes, they are defrosted by lunchtime and keep everything else chilled so no need for freezer blocks!
6 Sausages – your choice precooked and cold.
1 packet ready rolled ‘lighter’ puff pastry
2 tbsp (or more if you want) apple sauce – again your choice of brand, lumps/no lumps!
A Peachick sized handful of fresh sage leaves (about enough to cover the pastry once shredded)
Oven Temp: 200C. Cooking Time: 25-30mins (plus pre-cooking sausages and cooling them)
1. Unroll the pastry sheet and spread the apple sauce across the whole sheet up to the edges. Be a bit more generous than I have been here – we were running out of apple sauce!
2. Sprinkle the sage leaves across the apple sauce.
4. Wrap your sausages…. I find the easiest and quickest way is to take the strip and wind it (on the diagonal) around the sausages, tucking the ends in…. You, Me & Teddy made these and made mini ones which are really cute (post here)!! At this point you can egg wash the sausage rolls… I don’t none of us can really eat eggs without them being mixed in stuff so decided it was probably best not too! The sausages need to be completely enclosed to stop the apple sauce running out.
5. Place on a baking sheet (you can grease – we use semolina sprinkled over the sheet) and cook for 25-30mins at 2ooC.
OR… You can lay the sausages across the pastry sheet as above but without cutting it, fold the pastry in half over the sausages and use a pastry wheel to cut and seal the rolls. Cook as before… and they look like this….