Saturday, January 28, 2012

Beware of the Sausage - Part 1 of 2

Since I purchased my KitchenAid mixer and meat grinder attachment, I've been researching and reading different sausage recipes. I've made a few small batches just to try out the grinder and get used to using it. I've been waiting to make a big batch of sausage but I've had a hard time finding the sausage casing. After driving all over town, I finally found a small European sausage shop that would sell me casing.

I decided on doing a few various types with 2 different meats chicken and pork. First chicken, which this blog is about. First off, the key to getting a good grind is cut the meat, chicken breast in this case, in to small chunks or strips and put it in the freezer until it is almost frozen. If you don't do this, the grinder will turn the meat into mush. My grinder has 2 different grind plates, a coarse and fine grind. Everywhere I read said to use the coarse setting.

Once it is ground is when you add in the spices and other ingredients. I ground 2 pounds of chicken so I can make 2 different types of chicken sausage. The first sausage I made was a chipotle chicken sausage. Super easy recipe of chipotle chili in adobo sauce, salt, pepper, cumin and oregano. Then you just simple hand mix the ingredients into the ground meat.

The second recipe is an apple chicken sausage. I sauteed onions and a granny smith apple, let it cool then add it to the ground chicken. I also added salt, pepper, sage, fennel and brown sugar.

Once it is all mixed, I put it back in the freezer. Again, even when ground, meat processes better when cold. Now time to stuff the meat. I bought hog casing for the sausage casing. The sausage stuffer attachment uses the meat grinder attachment but without the blades in it. Once installed, you need to lube the tube with vegetable oil so that when stuffing, the casing comes off the tube easily. Once lubed up, start sliding the casing onto the tube. Once all of it is on, tie a knot at the end and you are ready to go.

I've never done this before so it took a little practice of feeding the hopper with meat and holding the casing/sausage as it starts feeding out. I'm still not great at it, but getting better. You have to be careful to keep sliding the casing off as the meat comes out otherwise the casing will explode. Keep filling the casing in continuous manner until all the meat is gone. One pound of meat yielded me roughly 1.5-2 feet of sausage. Now you simply cut off the casing at the end of the machine and tie off the end. At this point you can either leave it in one long sausage or twist it into smaller links, which I did.

I kept a little meat of each batch so I can taste it. I cooked them up in a pan and they tasted pretty good. I plan on smoking the sausages once I get the pork sausages done. Maybe I'll smoke them on Superbowl. I didn't get to take a lot of pictures throughout the process due to having meaty fingers. All in all, it was actually pretty easy to make and the best part is that you are in control of what goes into your sausage. No more lips and assholes in my sausages. I am making pork sausage next, most likely a Brat, Hot Louisiana, and Hot Italian Sausage. Stay tuned....


  1. Wow those turned out awesome!

  2. Trevor--great blog!! I especially loved the part about "no more lips and assholes in my sausages." Can't wait to read more about your cooking adventures! Next on the list is homemade corn tortillas and pork carnitas:)