Pork has been on sale often this winter and actually cheaper then sausage per pound. I have a food grinder attachment to my Kitchen Aid Mixer and it dawned on me to make some sausage. My parents always made it when I was growing up. We had a hand crank food grinder that clamped on the table. In the fall my parents would buy a half of a pig from the butcher and bulk beef. The butcher would cut it up in large portions then my parents would cut it up to suit them. They would grind up the trimmings and season it for sausage patties. I found the sausage spice recipe tucked away in my canning recipe box. In fact I like my parents recipe better then the commercial chubs of sausage. I can control how much salt and spices that goes into it. You can also get your butcher to grind up pork for you. It is a good idea to make your own sausage if you want to keep down the salt or fat for dietary needs.
I bought a large 8 pound piece of pork that was in a vacuum bag. I cut a roast from it and some boneless chops. The rest that was fatty, I cut up in small pieces to put through the grinder.
I had a little over 2 pounds and I adjust the spice recipe for the amount of meat I had. I ground the meat twice using the coarse blade first and the smaller blade second.
When I was finished grinding I mixed the spices in with my hands and placed it in a container to sit in the refrigerator so the spices could develop the sausage flavor. Before I put the sausage into the refrigerator I took a small piece the size of a olive and microwaved it for a few seconds. This way I could taste it and see if I wanted to add more. The next day I made patties out of it and froze them on a tray. After they froze I put them in a bag. This keeps them from sticking together and they are ready to fry.
My recipe notes tell me that I have choices in spices. You can add red pepper flakes if you want it hot or just lots of sage for turkey stuffing. Sausage flavor changes from region to region, so the best thing to do is microwave little bites until it tastes they way you want it.
Sausage Spice Recipe for 2 pounds of ground pork
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar ( add another if you like sweet brown sugar sausage)
- 2 teaspoons rubbed sage or dried sage. ( 1 teaspoon if using ground sage)
- 1 teaspoon of dried parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper ( you can use red pepper flakes)
- scant 1/8 teaspoon or pinch ground cloves
Optional herbs ( when used in any combination reduce the sage to 1 1/2 teaspoons)
- 1/4 teaspoon marjoram
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed fennel seeds
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed rosemary
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic
After you make it a couple of times you will know how to season it to your liking. I made mine with sage, marjoram and 2 tablespoons of brown sugar because the kids like the maple brown sugar sausage at the store. It was nice and mild and to their liking. They even asked for more. If I make it to use in a casserole I use only one tablespoon of brown sugar.
To make my eggs round I bake them in a whoopie pie baking pan but you can also use a large muffin cups or individual baking dishes. Spray the pan or baking dish with oil spray before adding the egg. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. They slide right out and you have a perfect round sunny side up egg for a breakfast sandwich. This is normally called shirred eggs in cook books.