The wife was perusing facebook last friday night and i happen to catch a glimpse of one of her friends posting about his sausage exploits. Naturally i jumped over and started prodding with questions about who and what. Turns out it's the brother of a friend of hers from high school that she keeps in contact with who was making some dried italian sausage from a recipe his grandmother passed down.
The preceding hour was spent going back and forth with texts, facebook questions and eventually a phone call in an attempt to get a recipe. As with most verbally passed down recipes there was a massive amount of vague ingredients and techniques. Gathered all up it was something like pork, heavy on the salt, crushed red pepper, black pepper and garlic. All mixed up, stuffed into casings then hung up to dry for 2 weeks. He also mentioned something about it then being put it oil for long term storage.
Now this guy is younger late 20s to early 30s and a third generation italian meaning his parents were born in italy even though he grew up here in CT. He is carrying on a family tradition of this sausage and i think thats awesome!
I had about a pounds worth of pork in the freezer and figure i might as well give it a try. Drawing from every ounce of my experience i took what he said and put it into this recipe. Amounts are for 1 pound and the fat ratio is purely due to me only have a small amount of pork on hand.
10.5 oz lean pork chop
5.5 oz pork fat
1 TBSP flake salt
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 medium garlic cloves
1/4 tsp cure #2 (scant)
I mixed this all up very well in my stand mixer. Instructions were to let it sit in the fridge for 24 hours then stuff and hang for two weeks. Warnings were given to make sure no links were anywhere near touching. If they get slimy things didn't go too well and they should just be cooked and eaten or tossed. He also said that they might get a powdery substance on them which i figured was white mold but with as much salt as it has it could be dried salt. Drying was to be done in a breezy place, he was using his garage as he had 35 pounds of it.
Tonight i stuff and will hang them in a corner of the kitchen and update my results. I didn't get very good details about grinding or mixing textures and had to go on my experience. Not sure if i over mixed since some of these sausages are supposed to have larger chunks for texture. I'll find out form him if my process resulted in the correct result once its done.
Ground up and ready to mix in spices.
Mixed and ready for overnight cure rest period