Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Hickory Smoked Garlic Sausage

I finally got around to using my Weston sausage stuffer. I bought it early last year & my wife reminded me several times over the year I hadn’t used it yet! Before I bought it I tried using my grinder to stuff some boudin & some chorizo. I used artificial casings & that did not work out so great. Listen to the experts, real casings, hog intestines, are easier to work with.

I was raised around a slaughterhouse. My uncle had a slaughterhouse & grocery in the small town I grew up in. He never let my cousin & I help make sausage. He let us squeeze out the intestines for making the casings! We loved the hot cracklins when he made lard. I should have watched him make sausage more & maybe this job would have went easier!

I picked up some pork shoulder from my butcher Friday. He had cut me up some with the right meat fat ratio; it was right at 6 lbs. I would use a recipe for garlic sausage from the book Charcuterie. It was for fresh sausage but I decided to use pink salt for some cure. I also added two TBS. of smoked paprika.

I mixed all my dry spices & sprinkled over the meat, added the minced garlic, stirred to coat evenly. I placed in a large plastic bag & in the fridge overnight. Saturday morning my grandson helped me do the first grind; he was the stomper. I used the large plate for this grind. It all went back in the plastic bag& in the fridge overnight.

I did the final grind Sunday morning, I used the ¼ plate. I took a couple of photos but later realized I didn’t have a card in my camera! I mixed in the cup of red wine and in the fridge to chill before stuffing.

I got enough casings soaking in warm water and did the stuffing Sunday afternoon. It went pretty well. I used a twisting method, twist one CW, pinch one, twist one CCW; this will also twist the one you pinched off. It went pretty well, had a few air bubbles to prick. Next time I will get a little tighter. I ended up with 16 links about 6 inches each and had about a pound of bulk left. All went back in the fridge to air dry overnight. The wife & kids went out to eat Chinese that evening. I stayed home with the dogs & fried up a patty from the bulk for a sandwich with mustard & onion. It tasted pretty good.

I used some 100% hickory pellets for the smoke Monday morning. I had experimented with my RSI from Smok’n Spice with the hickory pellets & knew I could get at least an hour cold smoke. I did the one hour cold smoke then went to smoke mode & maintained about 170 deg for the next couple of hours. When it reached 120 deg IT I went to 180 deg to finish to 150 deg IT. The 180 setting was more like 190 average. I had the sausage links on my top shelf & a chub of the leftover bulk on the bottom. After the sausage links were done it took another ½ hour to get the chub up to 160 deg.

After the links had air dried in the fridge I vacuum packed and froze them in 3 link packs. I had one left for my lunch tomorrow.

My grandson, he was my stomper!

Sausage & Wine

Sorry for the out of season tablecloth, it did match the stuffer!

Finished Links

Starting the Cold Smoke

Cold smoke done opened to start the smoker

Finished Chub

Ready to Vacuum Pack

Packed & ready for the freezer

Smokin Don

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