I am tired and my hands look like prunes! After mentioning our first sausage making endeavor last January to many of our friends, we have been invited to a homemade sausage tasting. So, in anticipation of the big tasting, we embarked on Sausage Making Round Two. Dom spent the morning chopping 18 pounds of pork butt, and another 9 pounds of pork trimmings and belly. I crushed the fennel and coriander seeds and combined the spices and herbs. Then I soaked and rinsed over 150 feet of natural pork casing (intestines.) Yum! Dom stirred all the chopped meat together with the spice mix adding water to make sure the spices were evenly distributed. We put the meat in the fridge to marinate for a few hours.
Homemade Sausage Recipe:
25 lbs. pork
3/4 cup salt
1/4 cup fennel seed, crushed
1 tablespoon coriander, crushed
2/3 cup paprika
2 tablespoons crushed red pepper
2 tablespoons cayenne, ground
2 teaspoons black pepper, finely ground
1 teaspoon black pepper, cracked
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon dried oregano leaves
2 cups water (to help blend the spices)
We set up the grinder with the medium grinding plate and the sausage stuffer, and ground a test batch. Steve arrived just as we took the test batch off the heat. We decided that more red pepper, salt, paprika and 1/4 cup sugar were needed. We re-mix the batch and loaded the casings onto the stuffing attachment.
It is counter-intuitive, but water is your biggest friend in the sausage stuffing process. Keeping your hands clean, and keeping the casings and newly prepared sausage wet are extremely helpful. The moisture makes clean up a bit easier as well. Additionally, it is much easier to grind cold meat than warm. Using smaller batches of meat to grind while chilling the rest makes for a better end result.
After 2 hours and 20 minutes, I tied off the last link of sausage. We packaged the sausage in packages and remembered to write the weight on each package before placing them in the freezer. There is an old saying that the two things you should never see being made are laws and sausage. The wonderful thing about making your own sausage is that you know every ingredient that is included; no chemical preservatives or mystery meat. The only gross thing about it is the shear volume of meat and spices that it takes to make a batch large enough to warrant the time it takes to set up, produce and clean up.
It is a good thing we like sausage; the freezer is full of it! A shower is going to feel wonderful...