Last Saturday Mr. Slippers and a friend of his trekked to the Brewers Union Local 180 for some fresh Ale. I stayed home with the bunnies and was given the charge of making some hearty snacks for the mister and I to enjoy when he returned, with a growler full of ale! After much deliberation, and re-reading of my beloved copy of Bruce Aidell’s Real Beer and Good Eats (someday I will tell you the story of how I obtained my signed copy and how my mom was able to give Mr. A some tips on making blood sausage), I settled on beer rocks.
Beer rocks are kind of like an anglo version of chinese pork buns. Made with a yeasted potato flour and stuffed with sausage, cabbage and onions, they are VERY, VERY good. They take some work, but truly, when you are blessed with a growler full of outstanding, fresh ale, the work is completely worth it.
Bunnyslippers’ Beer Rocks
adapted from Bruce Aidells
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
8 oz Pork Sausage, removed form casings
2 cups shredded Red Cabbage
1 medium Onion, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp Balsalmic Vinegar
Salt and Pepper to taste
3½ – 4 cups Flour
¼ cup Sugar
1 Tbsp (or 1 pkg)active dry Yeast
1/3 cup softened Butter
1 Potato boiled until soft and mashed with a fork
1-2 cups hot Water reserved from cooking the potato
1 Tbsp cold Water
To make the filling: Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Break sausage into small pieces and add to pan. Brown sausage and remove to a bowl. Add onion and cabbage to pan and saute until soft, approximately 5 minutes, reduce heat to low. Add reserved sausage to pan then drizzle vinegar over the mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste, remove from heat and allow to cool while you prepare dough.
To Make the Dough: In a large bowl (the bowl of your standing mixer, if you have one), combine 3 1/3 cups flour, sugar, yeast, butter and potato. While mixing add enough water to make a moist, elastic dough. Turn dough onto a floured board (or use your mixer) and knead until smooth (1-5 minutes). Cover dough with plastic wrap and place in a warm, dark place to rise for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Punch down the dough and form into 12 small balls. Flatten each ball to about ½ inch thick and 2-3 inches in diameter. Place a generous scoop of filling in the center of the dough and bring all edges together to form a baseball shaped “rock”. Place rocks on a cookie sheet to rest. Whisk egg and water together and brush over the tops of the rocks. Bake rocks for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Best served warm or at room temperature, alongside a cold one. Should you have any leftovers, the rocks freeze well.