Venison Sausage Roll
If you want to wow your guests with a little something to nibble on over the festive season, then try my venison sausage roll recipe. This is seriously the way to go. This is my tried and tested recipe. They can be cut into delicate slices and served as canapés, guaranteed to fly off the plate! It can be cooked ahead of Christmas Day and put in the fridge, or even the freezer if you want to be really organised ahead of time.
500g venison mince
500g pork mince
1 tbsp chopped thyme
1 tbsp chopped rosemary
1 tbsp whole grain mustard
2 juniper berries, finely grated into a powder
1 small onion, finely chopped
Salt & pepper
1 sheet of pre-rolled puff pastry
- Place the venison and pork mince in a large mixing bowl with all the chopped herbs, mustard, grated juniper and chopped onion. Mix together well, season with salt and pepper. To test the seasoning, place a small portion of mixture in a frying pan on a medium heat, cook on both sides. Leave to cool and taste, adjusting the seasoning if necessary.
- Place the mixture on a large piece of cling film and roll, using the cling film to help you make sausage shapes. If serving as a canapé, you should get 5-6 sausage shaped rolls out of the mixture; for a festive snack you can roll them a little thicker. Make sure the sausages are the same length as your puff pastry before placing in the fridge wrapped in cling film, to rest for 20-30 minutes.
- Preheat your oven to 180°. Lightly dust your surface with flour, unroll your puff pastry and take the sausage meat out of the fridge, removing all cling film. Starting from the edge closest to you, place 1 length of the sausage meat mix on the pastry 1cm in from the edge. Lightly brush the 1cm edge of the pastry with a beaten egg. Use the whole egg to avoid wastage and to make it nice and golden brown when it comes out of the oven. Take the pastry from the opposite side, gently lift and roll it over your length of sausage mix, until the pastry edges meet, forming a 1cm border on the other side and at both ends, using a knife to trim the pastry accordingly. Dust a fork with flour to stop it sticking to the pastry, press down on the border to pinch and seal the pastry.
- Place onto a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper and repeat the process until all the sausage meat mix is used up. Brush the top of each sausage roll with the beaten egg.
- Sprinkle the sausage rolls with Maldon salt just before placing in the pre-heated oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. If you have made larger sausage rolls, you may need to bake for an additional 5-10 minutes. Take out of the oven and leave to cool slightly before serving. Enjoy!
Our Christmas Cosmopolitan Cocktail is the perfect little tipple to enjoy on the big day…
Ingredients (serves 4)
140ml cranberry juice
70ml sloe gin
4 cinnamon sticks
36g pitted cherries (100g weight with stones)
12g cranberries (and 12 for garnish 3 per glass)
1 large orange / 70 ml fresh squeezed orange juice
1 tbsp icing sugar, sieved (for cherry & cranberry puree, more to decorate top of glass)
200g caster sugar
30 cubes of ice
Cocktail shaker – a soup flask or suitable plastic container with a tightly fitting lid will do fine as an alternative
Firstly, make your cinnamon syrup. Add the water and the sugar to the saucepan and bring to the boil, stir well to ensure it is properly dissolved. Add the cinnamon sticks, cover and allow to cool to room temperature (approximately 15 minutes).
Next, make the cherry and cranberry purée. Make sure you have removed the stones from the cherries and place with the cranberries and the sieved icing sugar into a blender and blend for 2 minutes on a high setting, until you have a smooth consistency with no lumps.
Take the whole orange and roll firmly on a hard surface with the palm of your hand, to release the juice from the pulp, then cut in half and remove the juice.
- Fill the Martini / cocktail glass with ice, leaving it there while you finish the remaining preparation (approximately 5 minutes) or simply leave them in the fridge. If you do not have a Martini glass, a small wine glass or Champagne flute will work just as well.
- You will only be able to make 2 cocktails at a time in a standard size cocktail shaker. Fill your shaker with 10 ice cubes, 70ml vodka, 35ml gin, 10ml Cointreau, 70ml cranberry juice, 20ml cinnamon syrup, 4 tsp of the cherry and cranberry purée and finally 35ml of the freshly squeezed orange juice.
- Shake well until frosted (if using a metal cocktail shaker, if not shake for 10 seconds).
- Dispose of ice cubes from the now chilled Martini / cocktail glass or remove from fridge.
- Take the Martini glass, holding only the stem of the glass and rub the rim with a slice of orange.
- Place the icing sugar on a plate and roll the rim of the glass through it to thickly coat.
- Strain the contents of the cocktail shaker into the Martini / cocktail glasses.
- Garnish with three fresh cranberries per glass, serve and enjoy.