Sunday 5 June 2016

Vegan sausage rolls - with cauliflower, tofu and aquafaba

I am always raving to people about my vegetarian sausage roll recipe.  Not that I claim any credit for the recipe.  I got it from Where’s the Beef who were given it as Liz O'Brien's recipe.  I have made it so often that I can claim it as a firm favourite.  Every now and again I tinker with the recipe.  As I did yesterday for a family lunch.

I didn't have eggs or cottage cheese in the house and wanted to make the filling before going out.  Veganopoulous has mentioned using cauliflower in these sausage rolls and I had success with cauliflower in a lasgana recently.  I had cauliflower, aquafaba and also tofu.  I winged it and it worked so I am writing up yet another version of these sausage rolls.

I didn't have as much time and energy as I would have liked.  So when I forgot to buy puff pastry, we just packed the filling in our overnight bags and took it to my parents to bake the sausage rolls.  At the time I wasn't aware that my mum was making salads for 100 people.  So I was a bit surprised to arrive and see the kitchen table loaded with cabbages, tomatoes and lettuces.  My niece Maddy was at the table peeling bags of potatoes.

As well as doing these salads, mum had agreed to hold a lunch for my niece Ashy's birthday.  I am glad her kitchen is bigger than mine and I could find space to make the sausage rolls.  Though the filling is vegan, I used eggs for binding and glaze.  However, as I often use milk for this purpose at home, that is what I have written up in the recipe.

My mum is one of those people who just manages to get on with it.  Perhaps it comes of having to organise a family of seven kids.  Making the salads seemed like a huge task to me.  Yet she just got on with it.  Not that it was all easy going.

One of my mum's skills is delegation.  She did have a few helpers.  Even Sylvia helped cut up cucumber.  I cut up 6 lettuces for her.  (Incidentally we had a discussion about how many lettuces were necessary for 100 people.  A friend had said to buy 20.  In the end mum said she thought 3-4 would have sufficed.  The leftover lettuce went to a place that makes food for the homeless.)

This morning Sylvia and I also helped decorate cupcakes for the birthday lunch.  There were plans for also making more battered tofu but we had heaps of food and not much time.  My mum had enough on her hands chopping the vegies, roasting huge pans of potatoes and decorating the sponge cakes she had made the day before.

The church lunch and the birthday lunch both worked out well.  I was pleased that Sylvia had some sausage rolls.  It was good to have some cauliflower in them for some sneaky vegetables, though I had actually put them in for a bit of body.  I was also pleased that she ate the brazil nuts which were on the list recommended by the doctor when she was retested for her peanut allergy.  Yes the irony of having an allergy to one nut is being asked to expose her to other nuts to be sure there are no other allergies.

Later we hung around the house for a bit.  I had promised Sylvia I would have a go at braiding her hair today.  But who am I kidding!  I have never braided hair before in my life.  So I asked my niece Grace to do it and she did a great job.  My nieces all seem to love doing fun hairstyles.  So much so that when I drove Quin home, she got so excited taking about hairstyles she forgot to direct me to her current residence.  Oops!

Lastly my mum mentioned that it was World Environment Day today. It seems a good time to mention a few ways that my local suburb helps me be more environmentally friendly.
  • The zip on a pair of Sylvia's boots broke recently and I got a recommendation from a friend to a boot repair shop that fixed it for $10.  
  • A while back I noticed that a community organisation with a garden program has a compost bin that is open to public donations.  We tried a compost bin a while back and it wasn't worth our while with the little garden we have so I have started to take tubs of compost along to the organisation when I am going past.  
  • I haven't visited my local farmers market much over the past year but when it recently changed from twice a month to every weekend, I found it much easier.  No more trying to work out which week in the month it was or arriving at the market only to find it was not on,  We are now going there more.
Reflecting on this has made me think about how much those around us can made a difference to how we are able to care for the environment.  Being quite busy lately, I am glad of this extra local support.

More sausage rolls recipes on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
Carrot, cheese and rice sausage rolls
Cranks sausage rolls (v) 
Gluten free vegetarian sausage rolls (gf)
Leugh's vegan sausage rolls (v)
Liz O'Brien's vegetarian sausage rolls
Vegan sausage rolls (v - Liz O'Brien's)

Vegan sausage rolls with cauliflower
Adapted from Green Gourmet Giraffe

9 tbsp aquafaba (chickpea brine)
1/2 cup pecans nuts, finely chopped
1/2 cup brazil nuts, finely chopped 
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp breadcrumbs
1 medium to large onion, finely chopped
250g cauliflower riced
150g silken tofu
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
1 tsp of stock powder
1 clove of garlic, crushed

4 sheets of ready-rolled 25 x 25cm puff pastry
Soy milk for glaze
Sesame seeds for sprinkling

To Make the Filling:
Combine all filling ingredients in a mixing bowl.

To Assemble:  (See step by step photos in my original sausage roll post)
Thaw 4 sheets of ready-rolled puff pastry. Place the first sheet on a flat surface and cut it in half, into two rectangles. Spoon the non-sausage mix down the centre third of each rectangle. Brush one long edge with milk and fold in the long edges so the one with milk overlaps the other edge.

Repeat with other pieces of puff pastry. Place sausage rolls seam down on a greased or baking-paper lined baking tray. Brush with milk and sprinkle with sesame seeds.  Make deep marks with a sharp knife marks to indicate where to cut them after cooking (halves, thirds or quarters).  (You can alternatively cut into rolls and/or make decorative slashes.)

To Bake:
Bake sausage rolls at 200C for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and cut into individual sausage rolls using marks you made before baking as a guide.  (These marks make it easier to cut.  Cutting sausage rolls partway through baking keeps the filling from drying out.)

At this point you can return sausage rolls to oven to bake another 10 minutes until golden brown and serve hot or set aside and bake for 10 to 15 minutes when you are ready to serve.  Sausage rolls can be frozen and baked straight from the freezer (about 15 minutes at 200 C).

Serve with tomato sauce.

UPDATE: December 2016 - Made these again with hard tofu instead of silken tofu.  The mixture was really crumbly, even with extra breadcrumbs, and hard to wrap in puff pastry.  Once baked they were lovely.  I updated the top photo which is made with vegan pastry and just soy milk for glaze and binding.

On the Stereo:
Love: The Beatles


  1. I do love your sausage rolls and hope to have a go at making them, but you know me - like you I may end up tinkering with them too. Interesting that these are made with aquafaba and cauliflower. wow, your mum making grub for 100 people, indeed a task, but I guess if she is good at delegation the work gets done.

    1. Thanks Shaheen - I have so many ideas for tinkering with these recipes (including using the laverbread you gave me) but I worry about if Sylvia would eat them if I tinker too much. I didn't mention the cauliflower til she was on the last one :-)

  2. Sausage rolls (along with nut roasts) are one of the foods I associate with you and this version sounds both interesting and delicious. You had an impressive spread of food for the lunch too.

    1. Thanks Kari - I am pleased to be associated with nutroasts and sausage rolls :-)

  3. Your cauliflower sausage rolls sound intriguing. I love the shot of the table with all of those delicious sweets.

    1. Thanks Cakelaw - it is great isn't it - it is the sort of sweets table we used to have when we would bring a plate to events as a kid!

  4. I used a tin of chickpeas and have now saved the aquafaba to use in something. I'm not sure what! And it is really hard catering for a large number of people at once!

    1. Thanks Lorraine - I have been saving some aquafaba and I am starting to find opportunities presenting themselves - and getting my head around how much you need for 100 people was enough to muddle it!

  5. What a lovely party! The desserts look good. So do your sausage rolls! Yum!
    I love Sylvia's hair - it looks so cute. My mom couldn't really do my hair when I was younger either... my dad used to curl it though haha ;p

    1. Thanks Kimmy - I am not good at fancy hairstyles - but maybe one day I will learn to braid (sooner than later for sylvia maybe) - that is impressive your dad curled your hair!

  6. What a great spread for a get-together. I love your sausage roll recipe, so any variation is definitely going to get made in my kitchen. I wish I had somewhere near me that had compost donations - I've no garden, and I always had throwing away perfectly good veggie peels and all that.

    1. Thanks Joey - being able to donate compost to a community garden is great and it has started me having a few conversations about options, a neigbhour who offered for me to dump into her compost heap and a friend who was thinking about giving her scraps to the neighbours chickens or making a compost heap in the communal garden of her units. I've really disliked throwing away vegie trimmings after having a compost heap


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