Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Homemade Italian sausage!

I love Italian sausage.  I like it in links, patties, or crumbled.  I like it hot or mild.  I like the classic pork, or the lighter poultry varieties.

What I don't like is sugar, and I can't figure out why everyone feels the need to put it in their sausage.  And I'm not sure I like whatever other "natural flavors" are often included, either. 

So I set out to make my own.  I found this awesome recipe, with ingredients I not only recognize, but have in my kitchen!  (With the exception of fennel seeds - I had to pick some up for this.)

I'll post my take on the recipe below.  I increased the spices, mostly due to using fatty ground pork and knowing some of them would get "washed" out when cooking. 

2 1/2 lbs ground pork
3 very large cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp dried rosemary (crushed)
1/4 tsp ground red pepper (or flakes) (to taste)
2 tsp fennel seeds (whole)
1/2 tsp kosher/sea salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp dried parsley

I mixed it up in the morning before work, thinking it might help the flavors blend by the time I cooked it for dinner.  Here's the mixture:

I went to get the real camera... and the battery was dead.  Next time, I promise.
I made it into 6 very large patties, and cooked them until they reached 160 F.  I didn't time it.

One of them would probably be a good size for a normal person.  I ate two.  (What?  I only eat once a day!)  I topped them with sauteed onions and peppers, and some spicy brown mustard.  Non-primal-Husband's was on bread, and he ate two as well, and said he liked it.

I'll increase the basil, oregano, and rosemary next time - maybe even double them.  And while I thought the amount of pepper in the original recipe sounded insane, they might be on to something, I'd increase that too.  And if you really like fennel, I'd bump that up, but I thought this was a perfect amount.  Overall, they were just as good as Wegmans if not slightly better, cost about the same, and it was such a relief knowing there was no sugar or other crap in them.  Maybe the next experiment is to buy some casings and make my own links.  Maybe.

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