Not another sausage post! When you find something fun you want to improve on it. Last week or so I attempted sausage making for the first time. Certain Someone loved them and ate them all up. We both agreed however we didn't care for the collagen casings. Maybe it was my cooking method. But we cut it away. Nevertheless who knew he would devour chicken sausage. I found natural hog casings on the Internet and decided to try them. They came dry packed in salt and I had to soak them for one hour.Natural Hog Casings reminded me of chitterlings( which I guess they are without the lings).
I took approximately 6 pounds of lean stewing beef and pork loin and ran it through the Kitchen Aid food grinder. Certain Someone and I had seen Tina Nordstrom make Swedish meatballs using pork and beef , and figured why not make our sausage this way. I added a leek to the grinder as well.I had made a seasoning in the spice grinder using juniper berries, a dried chipolte chile, mustard seeds, salt, brown sugar,garlic granules, and paprika. Juniper berries are common in marinades and German cooking. Next was the down and dirty part. I rolled up my sleeves to blend in my spices in the meat mixture. I attached my sausage hose and took one of the long hog casings. Amazingly that one casing was enough for all but a little meat! I still had about 11 more casings soaking I didn't want to waste. They ran about $3.25 but I hate waste!So I figured you could freeze chitterlings, I would freeze the casings and that and re soak for another time.And I still have another dry pack from the order. The hog casing is very thin but durable. I had to use the smaller stuffer, but they expanded to accommodate the meat nicely. If your squeamish about meat and casing which a lot of people are then you may have a problem. I'm all about the process and its great to learn how things we take for granted are made. I feel way better about eating it. These sausages cooked up great. The casings didn't slip, shrink or break way. They browned nicely. Certain Someone gave his approval. He has his supply for the mans weekend he planed. We are checking out the Boat Show(indoors) in this - 3 degrees weather outside.We can dream about summer days on the lake. And his games tomorrow. All in all it took me about 2 hours to process and cook. But that's me .