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Hot links

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
I'm wanting to smoke some hot links this weekend.

What kind of sausage should i use? I dont have the time or materials to make my own.



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post #2 of 5

I have had great success using half smokes and dusting them with a rub.  Your selection of rub/spice will make them as hot as you want.  I like to slice them kind of think and offer a mustard on the side of the plate for dipping.

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
What is a half smoke?


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post #4 of 5

Your pretty limited with hot links store bought. If you can find a local butcher who makes them you can get some from him or you can just get some hot italian sausage from the grocery. ( Johnsonville) Just make sure you follow the 40 to 140 smoking rule for fresh sausage.



post #5 of 5
Originally Posted by ZimQ View Post

What is a half smoke?


Oops I forgot that it's more of a Mid-Atlantic regional thing.  Half Smokes are delightful !!!! 


A Half Smoke taste like a sausage crossed with a hot dog.  It is typically half pork and half beef and crammed into a casing like a sausage/hot dog.  I found this link to show my favorite brand:


I guess any sausage would work with the method I suggested.  Give your sausage a rub with what ever level of heat/flavoring you want and smoke them like you normally would.  The simply adds a wonderful extra level of flavor.  Sliced with a dip into any mustard makes a great treat.


Here's an article I cut from a Google search:



half smoke is a unique kind of sausage that is served in the United States capital of Washington, D.C., and surrounding areas such as Maryland and Virginia. Because they are specific to such a small area, they are unknown to many people, even Americans. President Barack Obama is said to have been unaware of half smokes until after he was elected. These sausages, like hot dogs, are often served on buns with condiments such as onions,mustard, and chili, and may be accompanied by potato chips.

Half smokes are made of beef, pork, or a combination of these two kinds of meat. Although the actual origin of the name is debated, some say that term half smoke comes from an original recipe that calls for equal parts of pork and beef. The sausages are usually prepared on a grill but they can also be steamed. Half smokes are sometimes confused with other kinds of sausages, such as Polish kielbasas, because of their large size and appearance.

The key differences between a half smoke and a hot dog are the size and the spice. Halfsmokes are generally twice as thick as hot dogs, and are much spicier. In fact, some halfsmokes are made with red pepper flakes rolled into the meat. It is also common for halfsmokes to have much more texture than hot dogs, as the meat is less finely ground than is standard in frankfurters.

While many large cities have hot dog stands on many street corners, Washington is dotted with carts full of half smokes and buns. Because of the convenient locations of the carts, they are a common lunch food in the capital. In addition to the carts that sell half smokes, there are also few restaurants that serve them.

If someone should happen to find himself in the Washington, D.C. area and is looking for a decadent but inexpensive treat, a half smoke is recommended. It may be wise to have a drink on hand to give the taste buds occasional relief from the spice. One also may want to bring along an antacid, especially if he decides to go for broke and get the chili topping.

EDIT:  (DANG IT! Now I am craving a batch of rubbed half smokes - I'll try to whip up a batch and post Sunday evening.)



Edited by GoFish - 6/16/12 at 9:04am
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