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in the kitchen with: cerentha harris’ sausage rolls

by Grace Bonney

I love Australian food.  Eating there really is an amazing experience– the wines, cheeses, olive oils, bread, lamb, desserts, and the best Asian food outside of Asia!  I wish we had that diversity in Italy.  I miss it!  I crave it!  So for this week’s In the Kitchen With, to nurse my ‘food nostalgia’, I contacted Australian journalist Cerentha Harris for a typical Australian dish.  She gave us her sausage roll recipe.  I never realized just how simple it is until I baked these in a flash two weeks ago (“As easy as falling off a log,” according to an Australian friend of mine).  Now I have little packets of them in the freezer for my husband’s game nights.

About Cerentha:: Cerentha Harris is an Australian journalist living in Los Angeles. She is the editor of Herman Miller’s Lifework blog and indulges her passion for design and architecture at thisisadesignblog.com.

CLICK HERE for the full recipe after the jump!

Sausage Rolls

(photography by Kristina Gill; props by mud australia and Astier de Villatte)

For the Pastry

  • 2.5 cups of plain flour (all-purpose flour, 310g)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (5g)
  • 1 cup very cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes (2 sticks or 230g)
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup ice water  (65ml-125ml)

[If you don’t feel like making the pastry, you can buy puff pastry.]

Whizz flour and salt in the food processor. Add the cubes of butter. Pulse it until all the butter is worked in and it looks like soft sandy crumbs.

Slowly add the ice water down the chute, careful to make sure you stop when the dough just comes together.  Don’t over mix the dough at this point. You want to combine it until the dough forms big fist size lumps.  You may not need all of the water.   Dump it out onto a counter and combine it quickly and lightly into a ball (don’t knead it).  Cut in half and cover in plastic wrap or put in a sealable bag and stick in the fridge for an hour.

For the filling

  • 1 lb (450g) of your favorite sausage
  • 1 lb (450g) ground pork (or any other ground meat of your choice, or you may also use all sausage)
  • 2 tablespoons (30g) seasoned bread crumbs (I use Progresso ones!)
  • You can also add fresh chopped herbs (sage is good!), spinach, even cheese
  • 2 eggs beaten together with 2 tablespoons milk, to seal the edges of the roll and to brush along the top

Mix one pound of sausage meat with 1 pound of ground pork and shake in the breadcrumbs.  Combine with your hands, or a potato masher.  Add herbs and cheese if you are using them.

Remove one half of the dough from the fridge and let it warm up a little.  On a slightly floured surface, roll the dough into a rough large rectangle – the dough should be 1/4 inch (1/2 cm) thick.

Form handfuls of the meat mixture into fat sausages by rolling it in your palms and lay them end to end along the center of the dough, leaving enough of a margin so that you can roll the dough around the meat.  Trim the rectangle so the rough edges of the dough are neat down each long side.

Fold over the dough to form the roll – I do a bit of squashing here to make sure the meat is pushed right to the edges of the rolled dough.  Brush the seam with egg before closing the roll.  Cut into 2 inch (5cm) lengths and place them seam side down on a greased cookie tray, or a tray you have lined with parchment paper. Brush them with the egg wash.

You could sprinkle now with sesame seeds if you like.

Bake in a 400F (200C) oven for 20-25 minutes.

Serve with ketchup.

Why Cerentha chose this recipe:

In an attempt to keep her kids, Jack and Lucinda, connected to their Australian roots she has mastered the fine art of sausage roll making. Next on the list? Lamingtons, pavlovas and then perhaps the perfect meat pie.

Suggested For You


  • I thought most kids ate like this… Growing up in Canada I didn’t think it was strange at all. But as I grew into a teenager and then an adult I realized that my friends didn’t eat these things. It was only because my Australian mum work so hard on preserving some of her identity.

  • What a delicious treat to make, I love making my own puff pastry as well. Kids (and adults too) will love this treat.

  • Oh, these look so much better than the ones you can buy at the bakery here in Germany! I especially love your (vintage?) wooden board from Kitchen Aid though. What a gem.

  • Haha yes Megan, at least in my generation, kids did eat like this, it just wasn’t made at home!! It was microwaved/heated from frozen. I was very happy to discover that these freeze perfectly, once cooled, and reheat to their original flaky savory fantastic-ness. So make a bunch, eat some and freeze the rest for ‘junk food’ snacks for later!

  • Sadly as my mum got more Canadianized pavlovas and lamington’s at home became a thing of the past…. But our Aussie Family would faithfully send us Minties and Fantales each Christmas.

  • My British next door neighbor used to make these for us at Christmastime growing up. I have her recipe. She uses boxed pie crust mix, which works quite well in this application.

    Yum. Maybe this weekend…

  • Ahhh this makes me so homesick for a good Aussie sausage roll. Bring on the meat pies because goodness knows there’s no where to get them here stateside!

  • this post has just made me instantly homesick! I am an Australian living in California, and there is an Australian Shop here where you can buy frozen meat pies and sausage rolls etc, but there is nothing better than ducking down to the local bakery for some freshly baked sausage rolls! Definitely going to be trying this recipe! thanks

  • It’s true – growing up in Sydney, a sausage roll was the requisite afternoon snack at the school canteen. I can’t get them here in Chicago – guess I’ll need to whip these up now that I’ve found a proper, authentic recipe!

  • YES! loving the aussie-posts recently–i didn’t realize we had such a big transplant community on d*s! can’t wait to make these.
    now, if only we could find a recipe for timtams…. ;)

  • I absolutely agree with this post. I was in Sydney over the Summer and fell in love with the food…. I came back with so many ideas that I now incorporate into my daily cuisine. Wishing you a lovely day! XO

  • As an Aussie living in Canada I am always searching for a great sausage roll and have yet to find one that reflects what they tasted like in Oz…thank you so much for this recipe, I am definitely going to get the ingredients and try this asap!

  • “”I wish we had that diversity in Italy””

    i’v been living in australia for an year, and i’m italian. i madly loved and love australia. i enjoyed the food very much. besides italy the country where i found the best. but please DO NOT talk about inferior diversity in cheeses and wines in italy. true, we have less ethnic food, but diversity about cheeses (what the hell is ‘tasty cheese’?) hams, wines… it’s not comparable!
    anyway thanks for the recipe i’ll have a bit of aussie cuisine back wih me!

  • Kim, Pepperidge Farms just starting selling Timtams. I visited Australia 4 years ago and I’ve been looking for them locally ever since. Now they’re in the local grocery store!

  • Fran, it depends on where you live, like most places. In the two big chain supermarkets, sure, the range of cheese is not that great (“Tasty Cheese” is just a medium cheddar), but at any good markets or independent shops you will find a huge range of cheeses not only from Australia but around the world. Some of these shops are even run by Italian families… As for wines, again go to independent shops not big chains! It’s like anything – you can’t expect to find interesting fashion at K-mart, you have to look elsewhere. I can find as much variety here as when I was in Europe, you might just have to look a little harder. Maybe the big supermarkets should have more kinds of cheese and wine, but they’re probably not going to, because they only buy the most popular things to sell in huge quantities, and unfortunately that’s the way it works here. :/

    I do agree that Australia has a long way to go with hams and bacons though! We’ll catch up eventually I hope. :)

  • Hi Fran,

    Inferior is not a word that I used or even thought of when I wrote about how I miss the eating experience in Australia. On any given day in Sydney, for example, you can have fabulous Lebanese, Greek, Thai, Vietnamese, Japanese, Australian, Italian, French, Spanish, etc. and at all price points. As you pointed out, you can’t do that in Italy, not even with regional Italian cuisine, or even regional Italian cheeses. So indeed, I have nostalgia for the diverse culinary offerings you can find in abundance in Australia or the United States, and nostalgia for the food of many other countries I have visited recently.

    I am happy that Cerentha shared her recipe for sausage rolls with us. As I’ve noticed from the comments, quite a few other people have food nostalgia as well!

  • grace

    fran was refering to cheese in Australia called ‘tasty cheese’ . its kind of like a mild-ish cheddar. its generally the cheese most of us grow up with. its not tasty though.. =P

    great recipie. aussie, aussie, aussie, oi, oi, oi!

  • Hi, as an Aussie I can’t say how pleased I am this recipe is on here. I make them ALL the time and my boyfriend’s friends are always asking for them for game nights. If I were to add anything to the recipe I would add grated carrot (makes them moist- as well as extends the mixture), and chopped parsley. I use store-bought puff pastry as well which is delicious. One tip- Always make sure you buy semi-fatty sausage meat. The lean stuff just doesn’t work. ENJOY! Maybe next you should feature Anzac biscuits.

  • Wow! Blissfully ignorant Aussie here – I thought every country had sausage rolls! A sausage roll (a ‘sosso’ ) and a choc milk is the ultimate car trip food! I second what Tracey says about the semi-fatty meat – if the oil in your sausage roll doesnt make the paper bag / napkin go clear then its just not right haha! ;D A bit of grated zucchini is also lovely.

  • My mum once made a very special batch using a gingerbread man cutter for a family birthday party. They were sausage roll men with an S on the chest. If an ordinary sausage roll could be made tastier it was by making them in a very tricky Superman style. They were hard work and we only had them once but my goodness they rocked!

  • …to continue with my fix, I’m making Lamingtons this weekend… The sponge v butter cake v cream or jam debate has already taken place!! Will report the results on Twitter!!!

  • So lovely to hear from everyone (esp the Aussie expats). I would have replied earlier but we’ve been away celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary. Not a sausage roll in sight sadly. But I really hope you all enjoy this recipe. And Tracey is right, semi-fat ground meat makes it very delicious.
    Also thank you so much to Kristina for making them look so beautiful – that takes definite talent!

  • Mmmmm sausage rolls. You can buy them everywhere here in the UK – supermarkets and sandwich shops on most high streets. Perhaps they orginated from Britain? No party buffet (especially Christmas) can be without sausage rolls!

  • I am so happy to see your recipe Cerentha, because for my day job (corporate videos) I once had to film in a sausage roll factory, NOTHING like the real thing. Haven’t eaten one since!
    I look forward to your real meat pies too – my husband is a grandson of Sargent’s, but it doesn’t mean I like them!

  • sort of p.s.: I don’t know about LA, but up here in San Fran I can’t find moussaka! So I made some last week when I found ground lamb, layered with aubergine and an enriched béchamel, with nutmeg. I wonder if that is greek or the Aussie version?

  • I made this last night for my Aussie boyfriend, and he said they were the BEST sausage rolls he’s ever had — and he doesn’t “blow smoke!”

    Thanks for the recipe! :)

  • As a Canadian living in Australia, it is neat to have a new recipe I can make my sausage-roll loving Kiwi fella. It is neat to read the other ex pat statements.

    Erin, it made me smile to see someone in the opposite situation as me.
    Thanks for the recipe!

  • I laughed as I read your comment aloud and all I got back from the other room was “damn right”. Seems another one to add to the inter-Tasman ownership debate list.

  • I grew up (in NZ) on sausage rolls & pies from the gas station warmer. Delicious & disgusting at the same time. I’m afraid lamingtons & pavlova were on the menu too. Aussies and Kiwis might have to learn to share the credit for our culinary heritage :)

  • I do love being an Aussie! I have my own recipes for sausage rolls, pav and lamingtons (along with many others). Also, do you guys have mini bacon & egg pies or party pies? A party isn’t really a party without a platter of sausage rolls and party pies!