About National Sausage Roll Day
National Sausage Roll Day is a celebration of a glorious snack and a cultural institution. Like talk of Brexit and bathtubs full of baked beans, sausage rolls are a common feature of life in Britain. You’ll find them in petrol stations and cafes, at birthday parties, funerals, work events and stag dos. They’re everywhere because they’re cheap and easy to source. The ubiquitousness of sausage rolls is matched only by their deliciousness and these baked treats bring smiles to the faces of millions.
I’ve often wondered why I so enjoy sausage rolls and it’s doubtless because they’re comforting. There’s fancier food out there but I find it tough to resist that rascally mix of pork and pastry. When tucking in, I know that they’re unhealthy but I eat them anyway. I do so because I like things that feel illicit and because when they’re good, they’re great.
When is National Sausage Roll Day?
National Sausage Roll Day takes place on Monday 5th June 2023.
How do I get involved?
Whether you buy your baked goods from fancy bakeries or from the humble Greggs on the high street, the key is just to enjoy a sausage roll. Outside of that, there are no rules. Of course, it’s always better to buy local and if you’ve got friends, then get them involved too because nothing shows you care like a hot tube of pork and pastry.
What should I wear?
Sausage rolls aren’t fancy, so wear whatever’s comfy, preferably with elasticated waistbands.
Being June, the weather may be warm or it could be raining. Whatever the temperature, someone will be out in shorts and sandals.
Why Celebrate Sausage Rolls?
Let’s face it, modern life is a bit naff. Between now and next June, the cost-of-living crisis will be biting hard and we all need something to celebrate. Sausage rolls are cheap, readily available and can be enjoyed with mates or solo.
To be honest though, I’m clutching at straws here. Who needs a reason to eat pastry?
how are sausage rolls made?
For anyone unfamiliar with the concept, sausage rolls are made from seasoned sausage meat and puff pastry. There are many variations on this theme but I believe the simplest things are best. I like plenty of pepper in my sausage rolls and the meat should always be seasoned with sage. As for the pastry, the more buttery and flaky the better.
Are they good for you?
In a word, no. Sausage rolls are greasy little rascals and offer next to no nutritional value. What they lack in vitamins, they make up for in flavour and sausage rolls are comforting, like a warm hug for the soul.
What shall I eat them with?
Personally, I like my sausage rolls with a side of English mustard. The kick from the mustard is the perfect accompaniment to the fattiness of the pork. One of the key advantages of a sausage roll is that the snack is easily transportable and so I often find that no condiments or sides are needed.
What drinks go well?
You can’t go wrong with a nice cold beer and that’s one of the reasons that more and more pubs are serving sausage rolls as snacks. The Robin Hood in Hove is one of my favourite pubs and they serve Ship Yard IPA alongside sausage rolls from the Brighton Sausage Co.
What makes a good sausage Roll?
Personal preference comes into play here but some things that I look for include an appropriate ratio of meat to pastry, proper seasoning and the availability of mustard. A sausage roll is a hard thing to get wrong but I’ve found that the space between terrible and excellent is vast. The best sausage roll that I’ve eaten and reviewed can be seen below. This came from the ever reliable Castles of Kemptown, a place more than worth the walk from Hove.
What makes a bad One?
On my quest to find the perfect sausage roll, I’ve encountered some shockers. Things to look out for include dry or day old pastry, under-seasoned filling and the presence of poorly cooked fennel. Brod + Wolf were memorable for all the wrong reasons. The horror show you’ll see below was not only stale but expensive.
Homemade sausage rolls
Now, I’ve only made one attempt at baking homemade sausage rolls and the results left something to be desired. That said, this recipe from Gill Meller was easy to follow and the results were more the result of my hot hands, than flawed instructions.
Vegan sausage rolls
Whilst the majority of the sausage rolls that I enjoy are meaty, I have on occasion tried the plant-based kind. Two vegan baked snacks can be found on the sausage roll leaderboard, one came from the Magic Bean Emporium in Northampton and the other was a vegan spiced lentil roll from the Real Patisserie in Hove.
Do they have sausage rolls in America?
People in the UK can be harsh about America but I love it there. America is vast and the people can be welcoming. I’ve visited several times over the years, but for all the deli sandwiches, chicken wings and burgers, I’ve never had a sausage roll. Perhaps they’re just not a thing Stateside.
This Superbowl Sunday, to get into the spirit of things, I bought some Wikinger Hot Dogs. They were surprisingly good but if we’re honest, sausages from a jar, slotted in a bun can’t compare to the glory of British baked goods.
Whether this is your first time celebrating pastry or you’re a seasoned pro, I hope this guide was useful. Life right now is strange but in some small way, sausage rolls are helping.
Be sure to check out the pastry rhymes and look out for your local butcher.
Bone apple tea.