Elizabeth Heiskell knows a few things about Southern hospitality. Heading a catering company for the past 20 years, the Mississippi Delta-born chef details what dishes to bring on any occasion, from potlucks to Super Bowl parties, in her new cookbook, “What Can I Bring?”
For example, if you have a new mama to visit, food—not teddy bears—is the gift to bring. Heiskell recommends dishes that are mild enough for the nursing mother but still satisfying enough for the rest of the family, like a roasted chicken perfumed with rosemary and served with root vegetables.
Here’s a recipe from Heiskell for easy-to-make pinwheels with sausage and white cheddar that you can bring to dinner with friends. Bonus: You can prep them ahead of time.
Sausage and White Cheddar Pinwheels
One phrase that is music to my ears is “it freezes beautifully.” It’s perfectly true of this recipe. Make this dough through Step 1, roll it in plastic wrap, and freeze. When ready to serve, pull out of the freezer, thaw for an hour, slice, and bake.
Time: 3 hours (15 minutes hands-on)
- 1 pound mild ground pork sausage
- 1/2 (17.3-ounce) package frozen puff pastry sheets, thawed
- 1/2 cup chopped scallions
- 2 ounces white Cheddar cheese, shredded (about 1/2 cup)
1. Unroll the puff pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface. Spread the sausage over the puff pastry sheet, leaving a 1-inch border on all sides. Sprinkle the sausage with the scallions and cheese. Roll up the pastry sheet with sausage mixture, jelly-roll fashion, starting at one long side of rectangle.
2. Wrap the sausage and pastry roll in plastic wrap, and freeze 2 hours. (The roll may be frozen for up to 1 month. Thaw until just able to slice with a serrated knife before proceeding with the recipe.)
3. Preheat the oven to 400 F. Using a serrated knife, slice the roll into about 20 (1/2-inch-thick) slices. Place slices on a greased baking sheet.
4. Bake in the preheated oven until the pastry is golden and the sausage is cooked through, 40 to 45 minutes.
Reprinted from “What I Can Bring? Southern Food for Any Occasion Life Serves Up” by Elizabeth Heiskell. Published by Oxmoor House.