Making Home Made Sausage
Everything You Need To Know To Make Home Made Sausage
Why should anyone make their own homemade sausage?
Simply stated, because homemade sausage is - oh so good!
Actually for me, the answer to this is easy. I have the ability to make my own gourmet home made sausage that is far better than anything I could buy at the store and at half the cost.
I can easily decide what flavors of sausage that I want and these can not be found in any commercial sausage from the Supermarket.
When you make your own homemade sausage you can control every ingredient that is in your sausage and use the finest meats. This insures a high standard in the sausage you consume. You know under what conditions your sausage was processed and you know there are no added chemicals to add flavor or increase storage life.
Just great tasting, high quality home made sausages.
The History Of Sausage Making
It is believed that man has been making sausage for two thousand years or more.
Sausage making today in the most basic form may be as old as civilization. The Sausage Making industry is always changing and adapting as the world changes.
In many areas around the world that have cold winters, the people found they could keep fresh sausage without refrigeration during the cold months. During warmer months to preserve the sausage the people developed a system of smoking foods for preservation.
In the warmer areas of Europe, dry sausage was created because it did not need to be kept cold at all. Different spices are used to enhance the flavor as well as preserve the meat. Today we usually think of this process as Salami.
The result of different needs as well as the availability of different spices, led to people of different regions creating sausage that is now recognized with those areas. Different groups within a given region would add spices they preferred and used different curing techniques that now have become associated with that group of people.
Types of Sausage
There are many different types of sausage
The first division of types is the cooking method or preservation method used to produce sausage.
This would be any sausage made from fresh meat and then completely cooked. This sausage is usually eaten immediately after cooking or refrigerated and re-heated later
Cooked Smoked Sausage
This type of sausage is very similar to cooked sausage, except it is first cooked and then smoked. This type sausage can be eaten hot or cold and stored in the refrigerator.
When you make sausage using meats that have not been cured. You would keep this in the refrigerator until you want to use it and then fully cook before eating.
Fresh Smoked Sausage
Take your fresh sausage and smoke it. After smoking you refrigerate and then cook before eating.
Dry sausage is the most complicated of all sausages to make. The drying process must be carefully controlled. When you have produced the dry sausage it can be eaten and will keep for long periods of time when refrigerated.
Great Sausage Recipes and Meat Curing - If I could only have one book on sausage making this would be the one.
Curing and smoking meat using natural and synthetic casings
Selecting and storing meat and choosing other ingredients
Fresh Italian Sausage, Dried Beef, Andouille Sausage, Kippered Salmon
Sausage Making Tip #1
Only get out the amount of product you can complete in 30 minutes or less. Your product should not be left at room temperature for longer than this. Work with small batches.
How To Make Your Own Sausage
Sausage is made from ground meat. You can buy this from the meat market or butcher already ground. If you get serious about your sausage you will want to get your own meat grinder.
The meat grinder can be a hand cranked inexpensive type found in most kitchens and even second hand stores all the way to the more expensive motorized grinders.
Each type of meat grinder works on the same principal. The auger pushes the meat into the rotating blade that grinds the meat and forces it through the stationary output plate. The size of the holes in the output plate determines the coarseness of the ground meat.
This point may create an argument but: Sausage, the real thing needs to be stuffed into casings and this can be done by the addition of a stuffing tube attached to the meat grinder.
The basic Sausage making process is broken down into four steps.
1. Grinding the meat
2. Adding your spices and flavorings
3. Stuffing the casings
4. Storing, cooking, smoking or a combination
Sausage Making Tip #2
When you try new recipes for sausage, make up different batches for each recipe. I am speaking about small batches. Fry them up and then decide which one you like best before making up a large amount.
Useful Tools for Sausage Making
Standard Kitchen Items
assortment of sharp knives
small weight scale
A garlic press for fresh garlic
square tubs and buckets with lids. Do not use metal containers as they impart a flavor to the meats and react to the curing salts. You containers must have lids to keep other foods from picking up the flavor and also to keep the meat from drying out. I suggest sizes up to 5 gallons depending on the quantity of sausage you plan to make.
Use wood or plastic spoons and spatulas. I also keep a box of surgical gloves as you will use your hands for a lot of the mixing.
As mentioned earlier this can be an inexpensive hand cranked unit or a motorized unit.
String for tying the casings
specialized items for the smokehouse if you plan to smoke your sausage.
Sausage Making Tip #3
Don't use a mix that is too lean! Without enough fat, your sausage will be dry when cooked, and will tend to fall apart when cut or sliced.
Sausage Kitchen Aids
Improve your sausage making experience by using good kitchen aids. Here are some of the best homemade sausage grinders available.
Sausage Making Tip #4
When you have your own grinder, purchase pork shoulder, also known as Boston Blade, or get country style spare ribs. These are easy to grind. The pork shoulder has a bone that is easy to remove and the bone only accounts for about 10% of the weight.
About Meats for Sausage
Types and Cuts of meat for Sausage making
There was a time, anything that was not for a specific purpose went into sausage.
For pork, you had your hams, chops, ribs and roasts, You had your bacon, but what about all the other parts of meat that were left over?
For Beef, you have roasts, steaks, briskets, ribs, and hamburger. Meat loaf gets old and so does those fried/grilled burgers, so what to do with it that'll be most tasty?
mince (grind) it, Spice it, stuff it, then cook and enjoy. There are some cuts of meat that make for nice sausages without the hassle of trying to find lean meat then fat for it.
Cuts that take the guesswork from fat to lean rations
Pork - Boston Butts or Pork shoulder. These are approximately 75% lean to 25% fat which is perfect for almost any type of fresh sausage. You can purchase these boneless or bone in... Bone in is cheaper, just be sure to weigh the actual meat for proper amounts before starting the process.
Beef - Chuck Roast, 7 bone roast, Blade cut roast, pot roast or any cuts form the shoulder or chuck works just great as is with the correct % of lean to fat.
Veal - Any cut of veal is good to use, especially if you are going to make Bratwurst. But unfortunately, it's too damn expensive unless you have access to some home butchered.
Sausage Making Tip #5
Use only the freshest spices. Don't reach for that old jar of sage that you last used four years ago! It will have lost most of its flavor.
How to for Making Sausage - How to make sausage with wild game or meat bought from the market
A great instructional video for making your very own, home grown, personalized sausage.
Sausage Making Tip #6
For stuffing the sausages, you can use your grinder with a sausage funnel attachment. (Don't forget to use the coarsest plate you have, to allow the mix to come through easily!) Or else use one of the hand-cranked piston or press type stuffers.
How to Begin Making Sausage
You do not need to spend a fortune to begin making your own sausage. I am a realist and know that you might decide you do not like making your own sausage. So what is the answer to find out if you would even enjoy it?
Start Small - Start Basic
You can buy your meat already ground - no need to have your own meat grinder
Use a simple funnel to stuff the casing or get a pump handle pusher
You will want to work with smaller amounts and it will take more time, but you can find out if you enjoy making sausage before you spend much money on equipment.
The sausage you create using this method will taste just as good as sausage you would make with the best equipment you can buy. You will just not be making 50 or 100 pounds of sausage each day using this method.
Sausage Making Tip #7
Use only the finest natural casings - hog for large sausages and sheep for small, breakfast-style links. Poor casings will burst more easily, and will slow down your production significantly, so it's worth spending a little bit extra for premium casings. Casings will last six months if refrigerated (NEVER freeze casings!)
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Sausage For The Kitchen Library
With hundreds of great recipes available for sausage. With thousands of possibilities available for creating your own specific blend of sausage.
How could you ever have too many sausage making books? Here is a nice collection to choose from to start your very own sausage library.
Sausage Making Tip #8
If you are using a grinder to stuff with, make sure the mix is well-chilled. Otherwise, the grinder's feed screw will not "grab" the mix and push it through into the casing, and you'll have to use a wood stomper to force the mix into the grinder's throat. By chilled, we mean just 28-32Â° F.
Time for Smoking Sausage - How to smoke your homemade sausage
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Making Your Own Sausage by DMedley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
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