Just before Owen was born, I was contacted by Gold’n Plump chicken to see if I’d be interested in doing a review of their new line of chicken sausages and brats. They said they’d mail me a bunch of chicken sausage packages to try, for free.
There is not much I won’t do for free food (Exhibit A).
I decided to make a recipe featuring their Apple Maple Breakfast Links because I love breakfast sausage run through syrup on its way to my mouth. So I fried up a package of their chicken sausage links and rolled them up in raspberry pancakes, a sort of breakfast pigs-in-blankets, except that pigs-in-blankets sounds totally unappetizing before 1 p.m., thus the awkwardly long title of this post.
I made mini versions of these raspberry pancakes, using wheat flour instead, and rolled them around some fried Apple Maple Chicken Breakfast Links. The result? Delicious. The sweet maple flavor of the sausages really came through and was complemented so perfectly by the fruit in the pancakes (I’m dreaming of wrapping these babies in apple pancakes come fall). I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed the flavor of the sausage links, and they were far less oily than your standard breakfast sausage (which totally justified my dramatic waterfall pouring of syrup over these rolls).
And in the past few weeks, we’ve tried their Chicken Bratwurst – which we enjoyed once we convinced ourselves that these would not taste exactly the same as their pork counterparts and that was okay - and their Parmesan Italian Sausage, which we LOVED fried and added to pasta with sautéed vegetables – seriously flavorful, and seriously more healthy than pork sausage.
Beyond the fact that Gold’n Plump makes healthy chicken sausages and mailed them to me, I like the company for these other reasons:
1. It is a Minnesota-based company that partners with over 300 Minnesota and Wisconsin farmers.
2. Their chicken is “all-natural”: While I wish this meant that their chicken is free of animal by-products and free-range, what it does mean is that nothing is added to their minimally-processed chicken (no hormones, solutions, or coloring). So for those of us who can’t always afford the most organic of meats, this is a great, local compromise in my opinion.
3. Their chicken tastes good: I almost exclusively use their boneless, skinless breasts, and it has nothing to do with free samples. They have no added solutions, so they taste really chicken-ey.
I hope you give these chicken sausages a try; if you’re looking for a special Saturday breakfast, this recipe is the way to go. It looks playfully pretty on a plate, and saves eaters the step of dunking their sausage in syrup. And if you’re interested in trying more of Gold’n Plumps’ chicken sausages and brats, find out where you can buy them here.
(pancake recipe slightly adapted from Tomayto, Tomahto) (yields app. 12 pancake/sausage rolls)
These Gold'n Plump breakfast sausages are a perfect partner to fruit pancakes; I can't wait to try them rolled up in apple pancakes come fall. (I adapted the pancake recipe by replacing half of the flour with whole wheat flour.)
For the Sausages:
For the Pancakes:
1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. sugar
1 c. milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch of salt
2 c. raspberries
1 tbsp. butter (or more for frying)
For the sausages:
Brown thawed sausages at medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, turning frequently. Add about a 1/4 inch of water to the bottom of the pan, cover, and reduce heat. Simmer sausages for 12-15 more minutes.
Set aside OR to keep sausages warm, cover and put in a 200* oven while you make the pancakes.
For the pancakes:
Mix all of the ingredients together, except fruit, in a mixing bowl.
In a small bowl, smash up 1 c. of the raspberries into smaller chunks with the back of a spoon. Add smashed raspberries to the pancake batter. (p.s. if you are you looking at the post pictures, I did not smash up the raspberries but wish that I had!)
Melt 1/2 tbsp. butter over medium heat, until pan is lightly coated. Test pan readiness by putting a few drops of water in the pan; when it sizzles, you're in business.
Using a ladle, pour about a 1/4 c. of the batter in the pan. You're looking to make pancakes that are about 4 inches wide, so adjust the amount of batter per pancake as needed.
Turn pancakes when bubbles start to appear throughout the pancake. Remove pancake from pan when both sides are golden.
You can keep the pancakes warm on an oven-safe plate, uncovered, in a 200 oven.
To make the rolls:
Once all of your pancakes are done and your sausages browned, roll one sausage in each pancake, securing with a toothpick. Drizzle rolls with maple syrup.
Serve rolls with extra cup of raspberries as a garnish.