By Jamie Linn Posted by Rick
These flaky sausage rolls filled with pepper pork and green onions are a twist on the popular Taiwanese street food, pork pepper buns!
Taiwanese pepper buns or hujiao bings (胡椒餅) are a popular street food and snack item that consists of a pepper sausage mix and green onions stuffed inside a flaky, lard-based crust. The buns are heated on high heat inside of a clay oven and are best eaten fresh out of the oven when it is crispy on the outside and incredibly juice on the inside. The buns actually originated in the Fujian province of Southern China and early immigrants brought the dish to Taiwan. Over time, the street food slightly evolved in flavor and is now more common in Taiwan than it is in China. It is typically made with sanxing cong, long green onions native to the Sanxing town in Taiwan. The green onions are thinner and sweeter than regular green onions. They only sell these green onions in Taiwan so I went ahead and used regular green onions which are tasty as well!
While many vendors sell the buns, I was able to wait in line at the famous pepper bun stall, right at the opening of Raohe Night Market in Taipei. During peak hours, the line snakes so far back that the vendor often puts up line dividers. I waited in line for 45 min. to see what all the hype was about. Once I got my piping hot pepper bun, I let it cool down a bit and bit through the crispy, flaky crust. The filling was juicy, piping hot, peppery, and sweet from the green onions. They are delicious and addicting!
To get a taste of Taiwan at home, I decided to make my own pepper buns at home. I didn’t want to spend extra effort making the pastry dough, so I decided to use store-bought puff pastry dough. With the peppery meat filling and puff pastry, the combination becomes a pepper bun and English sausage roll fusion that is out of this world! It is such a delicious and flavorful combination and the recipe is simple. This is a good dish to make for potlucks or social gatherings.
Before you get started, here are some useful cooking tips and tools I used for this recipe that may help you with the cooking process:
- Thoroughly wash green onion bunches and tie together with a rubber band. Hang them upside down and allow them to dry for 45 min.
- Mix the pork mixture thoroughly to soften and break apart protein fibers. This makes the meat more tender.
- Do not overthaw the puff pastry. Thaw for ~25 min. at room temperature before handling.
- Chill puff pastry for 15 min. before baking for more flakiness.
- Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry Frozen Sheet (17.3 oz): For this recipe you will need a puff pastry sheet. I used Pepperidge Farm and the package contains 2 sheets. You will only need one sheet for this recipe. You may use another brand, but make sure the puff pastry sheet dimensions are similar.
- White pepper powder: Use white pepper powder as well as black pepper for this recipe. White pepper offers more heat and provides the signature pepper bun taste.
- Thin rolling pin: Use a thin rolling pin to help roll out the puff pastry dough
- 80/20 ground pork: Use an 80% lean, 20% fat ground pork for this recipe. If the meat is any leaner, it won’t be as juicy.
Taiwanese Pepper Sausage Roll
yield: 8 rolls
total cook time: 2 hrs.
- 475 g. or 1.1 lb. ground pork (80/20)
- 10 g. or 2 tbsp. panko breadcrumbs
- 15 g. or 1 tbsp. dark soy sauce
- 12 g. or 1 tbsp. granulated sugar
- 9 g. or 1 1/2 tsp. salt
- 6 g. or 2 tsp. garlic.
- 4 g. or 1/2 tsp. ginger
- 2 g. or 1 tsp. black pepper
- 4 g. or 2 tsp. white pepper
- 375 g. or 3 bunches green onion, chopped
- 1 sheet puff pastry (I use Pepperidge Farm)
- Egg wash (1 egg + 1 tbsp. water)
- White sesame seeds to top (optional)
- Wash the green onions thoroughly, tie together with a rubber band, and hang upside down to allow to dry for 45 min. Once dried, chop and set aside.
- Take our frozen puff pastry and thaw for 30 min. In the meantime, in a large mixing bowl, combine pork, panko breadcrumbs, soy sauce, sugar, salt, garlic, ginger, black pepper and white pepper. Mix thoroughly for 5 min. to combine and soften the pork proteins.
- Once the meat is combined, add in the chopped green onions and combine.
- Lay down a large sheet of plastic wrap and place half of the meat mixture on top. Shape into a thin sausage at ~9.5 in long. and wrap tightly with plastic wrap. Repeat a second time for the remaining meat mixture. Refrigerate for 20 min.
- Lightly flour a board and lay out the thawed puff pastry. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough so it is slightly larger. Slice the dough in half vertically, or the short way.
- Take one of the puff pastry halves and place one of the sausage rolls on top. Roll the pastry dough up and seal the edges. Repeat for the other roll. Place both rolls on a non-stick baking sheet and refrigerate for 15 min.
- Remove the rolls from the fridge and brush the top with an egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Slice each roll into 4 pieces so you end up with 8. Sprinkle more sesame on top and and refrigerate for another 15 min.
- Preheat oven to 375 F. Bake the rolls for 45-50 min.
- Remove rolls from oven immediately and allow to cool for 5 min before eating. Enjoy!
Pastries can stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Bake or air fry to heat up before eating.
*Nutrition facts are estimates.