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The History of the Rolls


Simple answer... Britain… Right???


Not really.

The modern version of the Sausage Roll is commonly attributed back to the Brits, but the idea of wrapping meat (or any food) in a puff dough is something the historians can never agree on. There are several examples of Ancient Greeks and Romans using pastry in delicate cuisine, but it's commonly believed the modern version of pastry wrapped meat was developed in the 18th Century.

Flaky or Puff Pastry was concocted a long time after plain pastry had become common around most parts of the world. Many popular European flaky pastries, which are now seen commonly in supermarkets, are often eaten sporadically as a premium snack in the UK. One of the most famous snacks and earliest flaky pastry is the croissant. The origin of the croissant goes back to 1686 when the Turks tried to seize Budapest by digging under the walls of the city at night. Only the bakers were awake (working of course). They heard the noise and sounded the alarm, foiling the surprise attack of the Turks. The reward was permission to sell a delicacy at a premium price: the croissant became that delicacy. It wasn’t until the beginning of the 19th century in France that flaky (feulleté) dough was used and the now common forms first appeared.

That's also about the time a very hungry British man decided he could make fun of the French by wrapping their favourite pastry around some cooked pork. Do visions of Inspector Clouseau cursing "swine" come to mind? Needless to say, the result wasn't all that great, but the war effort was just gearing up and the British people were very hungry. Sausage Rolls became an instant hit.

The next major revelation for the Sausage Roll came around 1980. A very Hungarian (not hungry) man and his wife were just starting a new family in the wilds of the British Columbia Interior. Paul & Susan (P&S) Tolnai were entrepreneurs just starting out in the food business when they came across their first sausage roll. They decided to bring the Hungarian influence back into the pastry used to create the Sausage Roll. After years of fine-tuning their recipe they are finally ready to share this Anglo-Hungarian treat with the rest of the world.