Living in the Austin area, you cannot not know about Shipley Do-Nuts. But if you don’t live in the southern states where that chain exists, then I’ll need to explain that it is a very popular doughnut chain, headquartered in Houston. Besides doughnuts, they make this amazing thing called a sausage kolache.
I’m not a food historian, but I know that kolaches are Czech in origin and are usually stuffed with a fruit filling. Some say that one filled with sausage is called a klobasnek, two or more are klobasniky. But Shipley calls theirs kolaches, so I call mine kolaches as well.
I have made countless dozens of these over the years, mostly for my boys and their friends. Sometimes I would take them into the office for my team. I’ve never met anyone who is not a vegetarian who does not love them. I thought you might learn to love them too if you gave them a try.
Shipley’s kolaches are made with smoked sausages that are the size of breakfast links. In Texas I used this one because it is all beef and breakfast link-sized. But I can’t find it anywhere in Arizona, and I have stopped short of the expense of having it shipped. I may still do that. For now, I make them with a hot dog-sized link.
Shipley also makes some with cheese. Add cheese with the sausage if you like. I think these are dangerous enough without additional fat. But don’t get me wrong, I like the sausage and cheese ones too.
Why the condensed milk? Because I love the contrast of a sweet milk dough to the saltiness of the sausage. Shipley’s dough is different. I like theirs fine, but I prefer making mine with this recipe. Picture a mild but denser Hawaiian sweet roll.
By the way, this is also the recipe I use for my Thanksgiving dinner rolls. Although for Thanksgiving I have to make a double batch so that I have enough for leftover turkey salad sandwiches. Otherwise, a whole platter gets eaten.
Here are some tips
- Start by taking the sausage out of the package and drain all of the excess fluids. You don’t want the extra fluid to make your dough soggy.
- Then allow the sausage to get to room temperature before rolling it in the dough. This dough needs to be puffy and fluffy. If you roll a cold sausage into it, the yeast will get shocked into not doing it’s puffy, fluffy thing.
These are a couple of my favorite little tools. They both happen to be Pampered Chef items, but that is just a coincidence. I don’t have too many Pampered Chef items, but I’m especially fond of these two. Since I used both for this recipe, I thought you might like to know about them.
The can opener is a jewel. It is easy on the hands and cuts the lid top off under the lip of the can instead of inside the lid. That means that you get the lid off without really jagged edges on the can or the lid. I like that.
The hand roller is nice when you have to spread a bunch of small sections of dough. It allows you to work on a smaller work surface and do one at a time. Otherwise you would have to spread the whole length of dough and then cut sections off, risking the dough getting dry before you are done.
You can use a bread machine on the dough setting, like I do. Or you can use whatever bread-making method you prefer.
After the kneading, you want the dough to have this kind of satiny look. Let it rise until more than doubled in size. In my machine, it took 1 1/2 hours.
It looks ready to roll.
…to manage the yield on your dough portions. Shape your roll into a log about a foot long or so. Then cut the dough into equal-sized pieces, half the number of the count of sausages you have. In my case, there were 12 sausages so I cut 6 equal pieces (although in this close-up you can only see 5).
Then, pick one section, cut it in half and spread each half to roll your kolaches.
Sectioning your dough like this keeps the pieces large, discouraging drying while you work. Also, it is much easier to cut 6 equal-sized pieces and then cut them in half than it is to cut 12 equal-sized pieces on the fly. At least it is for me. But you might be more talented than I.
Don’t get me wrong, some can be a little fatter than others. We’re not going for perfection here. But neither do we want to risk some of the dough sections being too small. The sausage will break through the dough if there is not enough.
Use a bit of an egg roll wrapping technique folding in the sides of the dough to make sure the sausage does not poke out on the ends.
Some people make sausage kolaches so they look like pigs in a blanket. I like the Shipley method, where it is like meat stuffed in a pillow. Puffy. Fluffy.
I prefer a pan with no sides so that I can spread the kolaches out without touching and also not butting up against a pan side. That way they get golden all around with no hard edges.
You want them nice and golden, like this.
I wish you could smell these. I’m so glad I can smell these. I’m so glad I will soon taste these. Hmm, I’m getting distracted. Sorry.
I never claimed this was health food, did I? Then don’t hate me. I’m usually SO good! Honest! Although it may not seem that way from some of the recipes I post.
You want to give these bundles of sin, I mean joy, time to cool. The juices in the sausage super heat and you will do your mouth some serious damage if you don’t give them about ten minutes to simmer down.
Yeah, Texas is a great place to live if you pick up recipes like this.
And I was good and had just one. For now. Did I mention that you can let these cool completely, wrap in tin foil and store in the fridge, only to warm them up and indulge all over again? I need to make sure and mention that.
Who’s going to sin a little with me?
- 2 packages smoked all beef sausage links 6 each
- 1 cup +/- water
- 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
- 3 1/2 cups bread flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- Open the sausage packages, drain of excess liquid and allow to come to room temperature.
- Place all of the other ingredients in the bread pan.
- Select the dough setting and press start.
- When the dough cycle is done and the dough is more than double in size, tip out onto a floured surface.
- Preheat the oven to 350°.
- Shape the dough into a log about a foot or so in length and cut into 6 equal-sized sections.
- Cut each section in half and spread with a rolling pin so that it is large enough to fully wrap a sausage link, folding the ends into the middle to fully engulf the link.
- Place the dough-wrapped links on a pizza pan without touching.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown.
- Remove and top with melted butter (optional)
- Allow to cool for about 10 minutes, then serve.