One of the main reasons for getting half a pig was to make sausages. I like sausages but really don't like the way you get grisly bits in shop bought ones, even quite fancy ones have iffy bits in and it honestly makes me feel a little queasy.
I wanted some tasty sausages without the "bits that pucker" (as my friend puts it) and the best way to know what goes in a sausage is to make it yourself.
The meat came from the half pig and the skins, rusk and flavour mix from Weschenfelder sausage suppliers (they were very good, decent prices, every thing you could need and fast delivery).
I asked the butcher to skin and chop about half the belly for sausages, unfortunately he left it as pretty large chunks, that probably suit their grinder but were much too big for mine. First task was to cut it down to more manageable chunks. I did get rid of one or two bits that were solid fat as being belly meat it was quite fatty in general.
After the chopping came the mincing. I am very impressed with this little grinder, it coped with the 3.2kg with no problems.
Next the skins were rinsed to get rid of the salt and soaked in warm water. We used ready spooled skins, I think this made the whole process easier and is worth the extra money.
For mixing the filling we used flavour mixes to make a batch of 1.5kg pork and apple and 1.5kg of Cumberland. We wanted the first ones to be very simple and straightforward, which they were. We then used the sausage book recipes to make 500g of pork and leek and 500g of baking chorizo.
Mixing the filling, I tried using gloves but it didn't work so hands it was (apart from the chorizo, I didn't want super chili hands). You can see the mincer ready to stuff the sausages behind the bowl.
Unfortunately there are no pictures of the stuffing, all four available hands were in use making the sausages so none free for the camera.
Getting the skins on was a little tricky, I think the nozzle is better sized for hog casings and we soon learnt not to overstuff the skins as it caused bursting when we tried to twist them. We ran out of casing at the end, four spools is about right for 3kg pork.
The slightly odd looking ones were cooked up for sampling, the more normal ones were bagged in portions and left in the fridge overnight then frozen.
They were very tasty.
Lots of things to do a little differently next time though (I am writing them here so I remember)-
- Ask the butcher for smaller chunks of meat
- More flavour mix than in the instructions, they were nice but could have done with more herbiness/appliness
- More liquid if following the book recipes, will use the meat:rusk:water ratio from the flavour mix instructions as they were perfect
- 4 spools of casing for 3kg meat.
- Less chili in the baking chorizo, they are hot!
- Remember making sausages takes at least twice as long as you expect (although less if the meat is already chopped small)