Friday, 22 January 2010

Pigs Cheek Sausage Rolls & my Dream Pub Food

This is a more fuss free version of the Piggy Cheeky Wellingtons I made.

Pig cheeks in tray

Pig cheeks after cooking

Cook your pigs cheeks the same way by gently cooking overnight in a low oven. Let them cool then trim them lengthways so they are thinner and more suitable for sausage rolls.

Pig cheek sausage rolls

Sausage rolls

Give them a little smear of mustard and then wrap them in puff pastry. Bake for 15 minutes until the pastry is browned and serve with some mustard and a pint of beer.

Pig Cheek Sausage Roll

The meat melted and the pastry crunched. They are cheap. Delicious. Easy. And divine. Without question, these are the best sausage rolls ever - Ginger Pig included.

Just thinking about pig cheek sausage rolls has made me want to own a pub specialising in serving imaginative bar snacks that use cheap bits of meat. We’d have Scotch eggs on a par with the Harwood Arms, pork pies that make Helen’s look average and pigs cheek sausage rolls that make you wonder why you ever visited the Ginger Pig. And all for a couple of quid.

We’d also make biltong from ox cheek and serve chitterlings to unsuspecting drinkers. Imagine how tasty chicken oysters would be encased in a thin dumpling? And the bliss of tucking into a platter of bourbon glazed short ribs. Ramekins of hare pate would be a doddle. Pork belly confit would be a favourite. Just thinking about deep fried skate knobs makes me feel weak at the knees, ankles and toes.

And what’s wrong with doing a range of larger more tapasy type dishes of pigs cheeks in cider and cream? Or slices of slow cooked ox cheek with smoky mash?

If you’ve got any ideas for imaginative pub bar snacks let me know and we’ll start a pub together!


tamara said...

These look fantastic. A pub snack I'd like to share that makes my mouth water just to think of it - I tried this in a pub in Exmoor (can't for the life of me remember the name but I'll go back one day!). Oh the bar on a Sunday they had baskets of thick sliced bread, chopped into 1inch chucks, which has been smeared in Marmite and then deep fried. Eat one of those with a huge chunk of mature cheddar cheese and forget the calories.

Sarah, Maison Cupcake said...

These look amazing. I'd like to see black pudding as a bar snack. You don't see enough of it around these days.

David Strange said...

Another really delicious looking recipe, Jonathan, many thanks for posting these. I must make some of these as I love sausage rolls and the idea of making them with slow-cooked pigs' cheeks is brilliant. Yeah!

You mentioned quality bar snacks in boozers. The best I've had have been at The Hind's Head, Heston Bulmenthal's boozer in Bray. Their Scotch quails' eggs are wonderful, wonderful I tell you, and I wouldn't skip having one of these on every future visit. They also have a changing selection of other goodies like 'Warwickshire whizzers' and devils on horseback. A great place to eat, drink and be merry.

natural selection said...

This post is murder. Nice job on the Pigs Cheek!
What do you think about the Crosse & Blackwell brand of Branston Pickle with these cheek sausage rolls?


Helen said...

Ha ha ha! Pork pies that make mine look average? Surely that's not possible? (JOKE!)These do indeed sound the best sausage rolls in existence anywhere ever. Just the thought of a couple of these with a cold beer is in danger of making me salivate down my face. I am so impressed with the way you have explored the potential of the pig cheek.

Krista said...

Stonch at Stonch's Beer Blog wrote a while back about having the chef make pork rinds--it ended up cheaper and with a bigger margin than when they bought them in. He said they would always sell out of them.

I think I might actually be in the process of investing in a pub, and have already asked the chef to put home-made pork rinds on the menu!

David Strange said...

Just to confirm what a brilliant ingredient pigs' cheeks are I draw your attention to the Calabrian speciality called nduja. "Nduja?" you may ask. Yes I do!

Nduja is a spreadable salami made from pigs' cheeks and lard with 25% of the local chilli which are then all stuffed into pigs' intestines. It is then smoked and finally cured for two months. Brilliant stuff which has a great piggy (and rather hot) character.

If you are interested there is more information on this page. You can get buy it at Borough Market.

Sands said...

Hiya - where can one buy coured pig's cheek in Uk - name Scotland. VCan u find it in any butcher? Great Blog btw!

Kerri said...

We've been talking over the last few days about all the things we could possibly turn into sausage rolls and pigs cheeks were one of them! Glad they worked out well.

Cheese on toast should be on offer as a bar snack, in my opinion, as should bacon sandwiches.

Roast potatoes would be brilliant on a Sunday too.

Manggy said...

Hah! I'll give it a think. I'm not a pub person and the only ones I've been to are in Manila... Soooo... That may not be a good fit :)

Browners said...

@Tamara - deep fried marmitey bread sounds heavenly. Ideal with a pint or two.

@Sarah - Black pudding as a bar snack would be fantastic. The Harwood Arms do black pudding scotch eggs sometimes...

@David Strange - I agree. The Hinds Head are masters of the bar snack.

@Natural Selection - C&B pickle is a splendid idea. Would work nicely. The beauty is that they are very piggy. So you can throw some big flavours at them.

@Helen - There is plenty of exploration left in terms of pig cheeks. And I was only jesting about you pork pie. I imagine that a finer pork pie will never be created.

@Krista - Pork rinds is a sensational idea. Little bits of crackling. Why the hell not. I love the fact that you are investing in a pub. And am very jealous. Live the dream.

@David Strange - Awesome stuff. Nduja shall be made. Maybe not in the next few weeks. But soon. Fantastic stuff. I am now gagging to make them.

@Sands - You can get raw, uncured pigs cheeks in Waitrose. But to find cured pigs cheeks you'lol have to ask you butcher. Brined pigs cheeks, if I am not mistaken are often called Bath Chaps. I'm sure a friendly butcher could sort you out.

@Kerri - Cheese on toast is a belting idea. Especially when you throw in some mustard and beat in an egg yolk. Makes me feel very hungry.

@Manggy - Let me know what you dream up. The simpler and cheaper the better!

Donk said...

Genius! I did think the wellingtons could be simplified into a brilliant sausage roll when I read your previous post. I'm definitley going to make these! I have something of a pig's cheek obsession at the moment; got some cooked "Bath Chaps" in the fridge ready to crisp up in the frying pan! I think the term "Bath Chaps" refers the whole cheek (not just the meaty muscle from the middle). They are brined then boiled and shaped in cling film. They can then be fried as they are, or breadcrumbed.

Browners said...

@Donk - Ah. That makes sense about the Bath Chaps. Let me know how you get on.


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