Friday, July 13, 2012

Sausage Brunch Braid (Creamy, Flaky, Flavorful Deliciousness)

First of all, let me issue a disclaimer - my photography skills for this post were atrocious! ...and for whatever reason, I felt the need to take about 1 million pictures. Actually, I know the reason. The photos do not do this recipe any justice. This recipe is one of my all-time favorite recipes. It is so, so good. Creamy cream cheese, breakfast sausage, and cresent rolls all in one recipe cannot be bad. In fact, it is downright decadent.
I have been known to eat this entire braid by myself - never all in one sitting, but close. :) The idea of it is to take it to a brunch so that everyone can have a narrow little slice or so. I make this for supper, though, and we just cut it into four big pieces and devour it. The original recipe comes from an old Quick Cooking magazine...circa 1998. I think we probably have the original magazine somewhere, but I go by my recipe card: 

I covet a piece of this sausage brunch braid as I write, but there never seem to be any leftovers...

Step One: Chop up your onion, garlic, and bell pepper. My pepper just happened to be orange, and really tiny. You can use whatever color you like.




Step Two: Heat a large skillet over med-high heat. Break up sausage in the pan, and add the onions, bell peppers, and garlic. 




Continue breaking up the sausage as it cooks. Stir occasionally.




Continue cooking until the sausage is browned and the veggies are soft. Drain, and then add sausage and veggies back to the pan.
(Look at all that steam!)



Step Three: Add cream cheese and parsley...





...and cook over low heat until all the cream cheese is melted. You should have a lovely, creamy, delicious mixture. Yum, yum, yum...I could eat this stuff right out of the pan...but I won't...crescent rolls are coming! 



Step Four: Unroll all of the crescent rolls like this...




...and pinch the seams together well so that it makes one large rectangle.
Tip: I find that the dough is easier to work with when cold. 



Step Five: Pile the sausage mixture down the center of the crescent dough, leaving about three inches on each side. 




Step Six: Using a knife, kitchen shears, or a pizza cutter, cut the sides of the cresent dough into about 3/4 in strips all the way up to the pile in the middle (like in the picture).






Step Seven: Starting at one end fold alternating strips at an angle to form a braid...  







...the picture is blurry, but I hope it will help you understand the "braid" process anyway! 







Omigoodness, did they get progressively blurrier?








After I have braided a while, I turn the whole thing around and I start at the other end. 







Ok, so I struggled to braid the middle part this time, but even though I did, it all bakes together pretty anyway :). 







Ta-da! It's braided.





Step Eight: Brush the braid with egg.
I'd like to point out that you won't use the entire egg. Brushing egg on the dough will make the dough shiny and pretty when it is baked. 



Step Nine: Bake at 350 degrees for 20 - 25 minutes.
And now I will show a whole bunch of photos of this lovely treat because apparently it was important that I take a ridiculous amount of them. 



Those are sweet potatoes around the edges. I had already cooked them, but they needed to be reheated, so I just put them on the braid's pan to keep from dirtying another dish. :) 



A view from above. Isn't it beautiful? Just think how impressed your friends will be when you show up with this...if it makes it out of your house. I've never made it that far...




Yum...





 ...and again...Yum...





Look how buttery and flaky the cresent dough looks...




...and how creamy and flavorful the filling looks!

Oh dear, I need to make some more!











Sausage Brunch Braid
Click here for printable version
12 oz. breakfast sausage
1 small onion, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1/2 t. garlic, chopped
3 oz. cream cheese
1 T. dry parsley
1 tube (8 oz) refrigerated crescent rolls
1 egg, beaten

Heat a large skillet over med-high heat. Cook sausage, onion, bell pepper, and garlic until the sausage has browned and the bell pepper, onion, and garlic are soft. Drain. Add cream cheese and parsley. Cook and stir over low heat until cheese is melted, set aside.

Unroll crescent roll on a greased baking sheet. Press perforations together. You should get about a 12"x10" rectangle. Spoon the sausage mixture down the middle of the rectangle, leaving 3" on each side. Using a knife, kitchen shears, or a pizza cutter, cut the 3" sides of the crescent dough into about 3/4" strips all the way up to the mixture in the middle. Starting at one end, fold alternating strips at an angle forming braid. Brush dough with egg. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 - 25 minutes. Refrigerate leftovers...if there are any.
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