"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time." Marthe Troly-Curtin

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Lamb Merguez Sausage

Yield: About 24 (10-inch) links
4 pounds boneless lamb shoulder, diced
1 pound pork fatback, diced (see note)
3 tablespoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons minced fresh garlic
1 1/2 cups diced roasted red peppers
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons minced fresh oregano (see note)
1/4 cup red wine, chilled
1/4 cup ice water
20 feet natural sheep or hog casings, soaked in water (see note)
1. Combine lamb, fatback, salt, sugar, red pepper flakes, garlic, roasted red peppers, black pepper, paprika and oregano. Toss to distribute seasonings. Cover and refrigerate until ready to grind.
2. Grind the mixture through a small die into a bowl resting in ice.
3. Add wine and water to the meat mixture. Mix with paddle attachment or a sturdy spoon until the mixture develops a uniform, sticky appearance, about 1 minute.
4. Cook a small portion of the sausage in a sauté pan. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.
5. Stuff sausage into casings, and twist into 10-inch links. Cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate or freeze links until ready to cook.
6. Sauté, roast or grill the sausages until cooked through.
Per link: 610 calories; 54g fat; 19g saturated fat; 120mg cholesterol; 25g protein; 5g carbohydrate; 2g sugar; 0.5g fiber; 1,410mg sodium; 65mg calcium.
Notes: Attachments for grinding and stuffing are available for most KitchenAid stand mixers. Pork fatback and natural casings are available at specialty butcher stores like G&W Bavarian Style Sausage Co. in St. Louis or Frandeka Meats & Fish at Soulard Market. If fresh oregano is not available, substitute 2 teaspoons of dried oregano.
Adapted from "Charcuterie: The Craft of Salting, Smoking and Curing," by Michael Ruhlman and Brian Polcyn (W.W. Norton & Co., 2005)

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