Cheese and Herb Sausages

Cheese and Herb Sausages + GLAMORGAN SAUSAGES, with cheese and leeks – at end of post

Cheese and Herb Sausages

Apologies are very much needed with this post. Firstly, I shouldn’t share this particular Cheese and Herb Sausages recipe – it’s that good. It’s so good I haven’t made it since I adapted this from one of those cookery books without an individual food writers name. The second apology. When I used to develop recipes, and occasionally adapt from an existing one, I would’ve made a note of the food writers name, never normally the name of the book nor publisher. In this instance I’ve no idea of the name of the book. And I wish I did. As this recipe is incredibly addictive. Actually, that’s not the reason I haven’t bothered to make this in nine or ten years. It’s only recently that I’ve discovered a real love for all things breaded. As I could never deal with that type of foodstuff in the past. And still can’t cope with a lot of deep-fried food, as these are. The good news is, they cook/fry incredibly quickly. And aren’t greasy in the slightest. The sausages used within photos were given literally only twenty seconds each side (as they had to be reheated for another ten seconds each side for my lunch). Seriously, that quick. Otherwise the filling would fall apart. Don’t let that put you off. Talking of which, it was always the idea of having to shape food into a burger or sausage that invariably put me off from making this sort of thing. Glad to say that recent attempts at risotto cakes, and baking, have improved my skills – for lack of a better term. There’s no stopping me now. I’ll be having these a lot more often. Even if they’re not much cheaper to make than buying traditionally made pork sausages. A decent block of Cheddar cheese is that expensive over here in the UK. And I should, I suppose, go with a bit of a disclaimer as these probably aren’t to every ones tastes. As I’m using a strength 5 out of 5 Cheddar. Of course, it would be so easy to adapt and go with a favourite cheese and mustard rather than ingredients listed below.

Cheese and Herb Sausages

I’ve been aware of a British equivalent of these for a long time. And for some reason I think my version is based on an Eastern European recipe, hence the need to adapt to British ingredients. Anyway, the Welsh version is called Glamorgan sausage, made with leeks and Caerphilly cheese, that I’ve never had before. This link, btw, is for a recipe within a Welsh Tourist Site (possibly not the official site) so I’m hoping their recipe is fairly authentic. As my adaptation is along the same lines I’m going to be including the Glamorgan recipe within this post at some stage. In fact, my version of the Glamorgan, using Cheddar rather than Caerphilly, is in the fridge waiting for freshly chopped parsley and a nice crunchy coating of home-made breadcrumbs before being fried. Oh, and I wouldn’t try and shallow-fry these gems, either. I can only imagine you’ll end up with a flat and gooey mess. I have to admit that I still haven’t managed to get used to British Winter Time. And today was typical in that I ran out of good enough natural light for photos. Hopefully I’ll grab some shots of the Glamorgan sausages tomorrow instead. As for the salad, that’s simple enough. Large handfuls of wild rocket (arugula) leaves, lots of pitted black olives, Jonagold apple cored, peeled and chopped and drenched in lemon juice and lots of pearl barley. See, I did say it was simple. Tasted perfect with these sausages. The dressing is something new for me and inspired by Karen, of Back Road Journal‘s most recent post. In that I would never have thought of using figs and mustard together. Last night, when I was avidly reading Karen’s post it was the mention of cheeses paired with a truffle honey and fig mustard that caught my imagination, thinking I’ll be able to use up some of the fig jam (that set too firm) lurking in my fridge. Mixed with a little Dijon mustard, extra virgin olive oil and a splash of rice vinegar that turned out to be wonderful. Even though it needs tweaked.

Cheese and Herb Sausages

INGREDIENTS:

  • olive oil
  • 1 x onion, peeled and chopped
  • 110g (3.880 oz) x mature Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 20g (0.705 oz) x curly leaf parsley, rinsed and finely chopped
  • 120g (4.233 oz) x breadcrumbs (which I forgot to use)
  • 1 x heaped teaspoon Dijon mustard, less or more to personal taste
  • 1 x organic egg, separated, yolk for the cheese mixture
  • seasoning, freshly ground sea salt and black pepper, to personal taste (I don’t use salt with mature Cheddar)
  • minimum 60g (2.116 oz) x dried breadcrumbs, for the crumb coating (the weight listed was only 25g used within my original recipe), with 90g (3.175 oz) x polenta bread used this time around for making breadcrumbs – see Notes below
  • 25g (0.882 oz) x freshly grated Grana Padano or Parmesan, for the coating (which I didn’t use this time as the Cheddar is strong in flavour)
  • sesame seeds, for the coating – optional

Measurements within brackets above are approximate only.

NOTES:

  • For coating 4 fairly large risotto cakes I need a minimum of 60g (2.116 oz) x dried breadcrumbs. 90g (3.175 oz) x sliced polenta bread will give me exactly 60g (2.116 oz) dried. These figures are minimum only as it’s much better to have extra to hand. About 15g (0.529 oz) dried breadcrumbs per sausage would be needed.
  • This time around I was decidedly confused concerning my original recipe, as in using breadcrumbs within the sausage itself. So I didn’t go with. Which left the filling rather meagre and more difficult to shape. As for the amount of dried or fresh breadcrumbs to use the quantity listed within ingredients above are taken from my original recipe. As yet I have to make them again to decide on exactly how much fresh or dried breadcrumbs should be used for the filling.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR CHEESE AND HERB SAUSAGES:

Bit of a disclaimer here: whilst writing this post I’ve just made sense of my own handwriting! The cheese mixture, within my recipe on paper, includes breadcrumbs. I didn’t realise to do that this time around – oops. I’ll add breadcrumbs to the Glamorgan recipe and see if that makes a lot of difference. It shouldn’t make any difference to the overall taste. But it should allow for these to make more. And they should be easier to shape. However, they may take a little longer to deep-fry. In fact, they take exactly the same length of time to fry. Update: And I was right, in that they are much easier to shape. Would definitely recommend adding breadcrumbs to the cheese mixture (see Notes above).

  • Add a good glug of olive oil to a heavy-based saucepan with lid and put on electric heat No 3. Add the onion and stir through. Cook for about 15 minutes, then remove the lid and continue to cook, stirring through more often to prevent the onions from sticking to base of pan. I prefer to cook them until they’re almost caramelised as it will add more flavour.
  • Mix the cheese, parsley and the breadcrumbs together in a large bowl. Place, covered, in the fridge and chill for at least half an hour, if not longer. The colder the mixture is the easier it will be to shape them.
  • In the meantime separate the egg, keeping the yolk for the mixture and the white for the coating. Place them in separate bowls and lightly whisk the egg white.
  • Add the Dijon mustard to the egg yolk and stir well. When cheese mixture is cold enough add the egg and mustard mixture and mix thoroughly. With wet hands start to shape the sausages. Use about a heaped dessertspoonful of the mixture, place that in the palm of one hand, clasp with other and squeeze out any trapped air. Then, gently start to shape the mixture into a sausage. Place on a clean plate.
  • Add about 3 – 5 cms (1½ – 2 ins) of oil (I used sunflower) into a saucepan and place on the back of the hob/stove as it’s safer there. I use a saucepan without a handle so it’s even safer. Put the heat to electric No 3 (out of 6) and allow to heat through, but not smoking. Test by dropping in a little bit of breadcrumbs, and if they sizzle the oil should be hot. I have a metal slotted spoon to hand as well as a clean plate with kitchen paper/towel nearby.
  • Prepare the Parmesan if using. I didn’t use any other cheese this time around as the Cheddar I bought was quite strong in flavour.
  • Prep the breadcrumbs and add them to a bowl with the sesame seeds if using.
  • When the oil is hot dip each sausage into the whisked egg white, making sure all of the sausage is coated. If using Parmesan then dip the sausage into that. Dip again into the egg white and then place the sausage in the breadcrumbs (with the sesame seeds if using). Using a fork gently lift and turn it over so it gets evenly coated with crumbs. Do this for each sausage. Place the sausages one by one on to the slotted spoon and carefully lower into the hot oil. I only fry one sausage at a time. It takes very little time to fry these so don’t leave the pan! After about 20 seconds gently lift or tease the sausage over with the slotted spoon to cook it the other side. Count another 20 seconds, and if the coating is nicely golden remove from the oil and place on to the plate with the kitchen paper/towel. They may need up to 30 seconds each side, or slightly longer, to get them nicely golden.

GLAMORGAN SAUSAGES, served with apple salad

Glamorgan sausages

Of course, I had to try this version as well. Especially as I can’t get enough of leeks right now. And these are good. Just not as good as. Partly as I went with a less mature Cheddar, to help replicate Caerphilly that would ordinarily be used. And went with using quite a lot of breadcrumbs (which probably wouldn’t be used if going for an authentic dish) within the filling, made from my Yoghurt ‘Quick’ Bread. Great texture. Meaty and satisfying. But without the strength of flavours I had expected. Both types of breadcrumbs used, as in the one listed and the Polenta Bread for the coating, worked in that neither are overpowering in flavour. It’s the combination of leeks and cheese used that was the problem. Hmm, possibly coat the sausages with Grana Padano before breading them? Anyway, I’ve decided to go with both recipes within the one post as these just might be more suitable for kids.

Glamorgan Sausages

GLAMORGAN SAUSAGES

INGREDIENTS:

  • olive oil
  • 200g (7.055 oz) x leeks, white and pale green only, sliced lengthways and turn, slice lengthways again, then turn and slice crossways into small dice, rinse thoroughly
  • 100g (3.527 oz) x mature Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 x heaped teaspoon Dijon mustard, less or more to personal taste (original recipe uses dry English mustard instead)
  • 90g (3.175 oz) x white bread, sliced and lightly toasted for breadcrumbs (I used my Yoghurt ‘quick’ bread) which should leave approximately 60g x dried breadcrumbs
  • 1 x tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • seasoning, freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 x organic egg, separated (yolk for the filling and the white for coating before breading the sausages)
  • up to 100g (3.527 oz) x polenta bread, sliced and lightly toasted for breadcrumbs
  • 25g (0.882 oz) x freshly grated Grana Padano or Parmesan, for the coating – optional

Measurements within brackets above are approximate only.

NOTES: For coating 4 fairly large risotto cakes I need a minimum of 60g (2.116 oz) x dried breadcrumbs. 90g (3.175 oz) x sliced polenta bread will give me exactly 60g (2.116 oz) dried. These figures are minimum only as it’s much better to have extra to hand. About 15g (0.529 oz) per sausage would be needed.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR GLAMORGAN SAUSAGES:

  • Add a good glug of olive oil to a heavy-based saucepan with lid and put on electric heat No 3. Add the leeks and stir through. Cook for about 15 minutes, then remove the lid and continue to cook, stirring through more often to prevent the leeks from sticking to base of pan. I prefer to cook leeks until they’re nicely soft and beginning to catch on base of pan as it always seems to lend more flavour to any recipe I cook.
  • In the meantime prepare both sets of breadcrumbs.
  • In a large bowl mix the cheese with the breadcrumbs, seasoning, parsley, mustard and egg yolk. Chill for at least an hour in the fridge as the filling will be so much easier to shape if cold.
  • Prepare plates and/or bowls for each of the egg white, lightly whisked, the Grana Padano or Parmesan (if using) and for the breadcrumbs.
  • Add about 3 – 5 cms (1½ – 2 ins) of oil (I used sunflower) into a saucepan and place on the back of the hob/stove as it’s safer there. I use a saucepan without a handle so it’s even safer. Put the heat to electric No 3 (out of 6) and allow to heat through, but not smoking. Test by dropping in a little bit of breadcrumbs, and if they sizzle the oil should be hot. I have a metal slotted spoon to hand as well as a clean plate with kitchen paper/towel nearby.
  • Prepare the Gran Padano or Parmesan if using.
  • When the oil is hot dip each sausage into the whisked egg white, making sure all of the sausage is coated. If using Grana Padano Parmesan then dip the sausage into that. Dip again into the egg white and then place the sausage in the breadcrumbs. Using a fork gently lift and turn it over so it gets evenly coated with crumbs. Set them aside on a plate until needed. Just before frying add each sausage to the breadcrumbs for a second time and, time permitting, allow enough time to reshape or to pat them into shape.
  • To deep-fry them place the sausages one by one on to a slotted spoon and carefully lower into the hot oil. I only fry one sausage at a time. It takes very little time to fry these so don’t leave the pan! After about 20 seconds gently lift or tease the sausage over with the slotted spoon to cook it the other side. Count another 20 seconds, and if the coating is nicely golden remove from the oil and place on to the plate with the kitchen paper/towel. They may need up to 30 seconds each side, or slightly longer, to get them nicely golden.
  • These can be reheated under a preheated grill/broiler without them loosing shape.

NOTES ON BREADCRUMBS:

  • The breadcrumbs used to coat these sausages within this post were made from my Polenta ‘Quick’ Bread, that happens to be a pale yellow colour. When I first made these I would’ve used plain white bread, sliced and lightly toasted and then crumbed in a coffee grinder. With the polenta breadcrumbs I now use I merely slice the bread, crumb it roughly and add them to a heavy-based saucepan on lowest heat. Gradually, as the bread dries out, I use a potato masher to grind the crumbs within the pan. Then, quite simply, use my hands to get them even finer. And they should be quite fine for these sausages, otherwise you run the risk of the coating flaking off during deep-frying, regardless of using egg white to coat the sausages before breading them.

All photographs within (Todas las fotografías dentro de) Kitschnflavours:
All rights reserved (© Todos los derechos reservados) – Copyright © Johnny Hepburn

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28 responses to “Cheese and Herb Sausages

  1. Looks delicious – particularly in the photo where you’ve broken one apart! Love the idea of adding leeks to the mix too! Ahh, you’re having some amazing lunches and dinners lately… :)

    • Thank you! Have to look after myself as no one else would! Okay, I’m exaggerating. What surprised me when I started to write up the ingredients list was that I’d completely forgotten to add breadcrumbs to the cheese mixture. My handwritten notes from ten years ago were that difficult to understand. Ouch! Will try the Glamorgan tomorrow with breadcrumbs and see how that one turns out. Shouldn’t make much difference to the taste of them as the cheese and parsley are the predominant flavours. Let’s hope so :)

  2. Love the whole thing! The apple/wild rocket/olive salad & a fig/Dijon mustard dressing also looks and sounds wonderful. I’m intrigued by the Welsh version of the ‘sausages’. Looking forward to giving these a try.

    • Just about to bake another yoghurt loaf for breadcrumbs to use within the sausage filling. Can’t quite believe I couldn’t even figure my own handwriting! Yes, I would’ve thought the combination of leeks and melted cheese will be a winning combination. As for the dressing, that needs tweaking. Partly as I’m using up fig jam. Nice little salad, though.

  3. It feels weird saying this but these look beautifully breaded! If I did this it would very likely look a mess. The dressing sounds right up my street, too, I’m always looking for new and easy ones. There’s a lot on my “to cook” list already, but I’ll definitely add these sausages.

    • It’s not at all weird to read that. What surprises me, in a good way, is that I’m getting to grips with shaping this type of food stuff. It’s always put me off in the past. As long as the filling is well chilled, and you have everything to hand, it’s far simpler than I thought. I’m finding, without this turning into a tutorial, that it’s best to squeeze as much air out of them, shape them roughly, then reshape once they’re coated in breadcrumbs. And I totally understand re to cook list. This post was supposed to be a walnut & hazelnut tart!

  4. I love ‘breaded’, I love ‘fried and I love deep-fried too! I’m an FFF – a fried food fanatic. I do agree, however, that it’s the HOW of frying that makes all the difference … I am so glad you worked at this recipe, it sounds absolutely amazing, thank you!

    • Breaded is a new thing for me. And I’m pleased about it. I’ve just wolfed several Glamorgan, and although the Cheddar wasn’t quite strong enough, being a differing brand from before, the sausages were still surprisingly meaty and satisfying. Because of that I’m in the process of updating post. Can’t believe I couldn’t figure my own adaptation of a recipe from years ago! And forgot to add breadcrumbs to the filling. Next time!

  5. I have to confesses to worrying about deep frying, which is why I rarely try recipes that need deep frying. Felafel, arancini, doughnuts, deep fried Mars Bars… But your photos are tempting me!

    • Deep-frying is something I’m loath to do, partly as I don’t like the smell of it afterwards. Especially at this time of year when it’s too cold to have the windows open. Hold on, what do you mean, Mars bars!! There’s no chance I’d find those on your buffet table! Not in a million years. Haha!

      I’m only using about 3cm of oil to fry these, and only moderate heat. I just won’t go to the smoking point at any point, thanks. Besides the health problems the smell is even worse! And to make these, the occasional time, is actually a bit of a treat :)

  6. This looks delicious, Johnny. I’m glad you tried the fig and mustard combination. Using it in a salad dressing was a great idea.

  7. ciao! i eat sausage when they are from artisanal sources-when i am in the small villages in italy…but this recipe is so tempting. the salad ingredients are just what i want to eat now…i may add walnuts and dolcelatte cheese.
    thebestdressup

    • I very seldom eat any type of sausage. As any gristle or too much fat will really do me in! Which is why I really wanted to try these again, so I can have that comfort factor without the cheap cuts of meat.

      Really loving your suggestion of dolcelatte cheese and walnuts. Have just Googled, as I find most British blue cheese to be too harsh, and it was developed for the Brit market. Huh, and I never see it in the shops here. Will look out for it. Thanks!

  8. OMG this is too delicious looking. I’m loving these fried/finger food posts. Well done!

  9. I was confused by the sausage, kept looking at the ingredients and then it hit me, they are shaped like sausages. I am a bit slow today, they do look delicious, how could you not love cheese and bread. This is like a deconstructed (for lack of a better word)or maybe re-imagined grilled cheese sandwich, The dressing sounds lovely.

    • Over here, we call anything sausage shaped a sausage. Including those little dogs. These are delicious. I’m just about to try and get some photos of the Glamorgan that I made yesterday. Their shape turned out really well. Shame about the wretched light! And yes, you’re right. They are a sort of inside out grilled sandwich!

  10. this awesome dish (I want to bite it) strengthens my resolve to come visit your cafe! ;)

    • Wouldn’t these be perfect as a lunch time special? Shame I weighed the breadcrumbs wrong! Editing post as you commented. I made note of the weight of the bread used for making breadcrumbs, not the crumbs themselves. Doh!

  11. Wow Johnny this looks terribly impressive. Yeah, on one hand you should have kept them a secret. But then, on the other hand it just proves again what an incredible cook you are! Which is your favourite cheese? I love too many cheeses so I can’t pick. Though I have to say I used to hate Cheddar (because I had never tasted a good one) but now I have detected some good ones and I love them.

    • I’m with you on that one. I don’t know if I could choose a favourite. There are too many! And I’m far too fickle. Blue cheese is possibly my least favourite. Having said that, a Basque friend I used to know bought Fortnums and Masons Stilton as a present a couple of times for the Matriarch. Wow, that cheese was perfectly ripe and extraordinarily delicious. French soft cheese I very seldom buy here as it’s very difficult to buy non pasteurised – which aren’t the same at all.

  12. First of all, I love Arugula and apple. Such a great combination. The sausages look so delicious, the crust is golden, and the inside looks soft and fluffy. I can imagine how every crunch will feel like. Thanks for sharing. I love cheddar too.

    • So do I! It’s very seldom I bother to buy rocket leaves as they’re usually sold in large bags, which invariably go off before I get to finish them. Still, what a good combination. And, regardless of how simple the salad was, it was very nice with the sausages. Thank you.

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