My buddy and I went to Edmonton to go to a BC Lions football game. Sadly the Edmonton Eskimos won but it gave me a chance to go to Cabelas and Bass Pro. I was wanting to try some sausage in my new Louisiana Grills Pellet Smoker. So, I picked up some Smokehouse Summer Sausage Seasonings and a Backwoods Trail Bologna
Each kit called for 5 pounds of meat. I had 4 pounds of moose left in my freezer and I used pork shoulder to make up the difference. I ground the meat for the summer sausage with a medium plate and the trail bologna with a fine plate.
The Smokehouse seasonings don't include cure and I don't feel comfortable doing a long smoke without cure. Also, the colour wouldn't be as good. So I added 1/4 ounce of cure to the seasoning mix. I then mixed that and 1 cup of water into the meat.
The Backwoods seasonings included cure. They call for mixing the cure and seasonings with 5 ounces of water. Then you mix the slurry with 5 pounds of meat.
When the meat was mixed, I pulled out the LEM sausage stuffer. I put the Summer sausage in 3 inch fibrous casings that hold 2 1/2 pounds each. I put the Trail Bologna in 2 inch casings that came in the kit.
I put the sausage in the fridge overnight. Then I put them on racks for an hour to make sure they were dry.
I put the sausages in the Louisiana Grills smoker not turned on with the A-MAZE-N pellet smoker filled with oak. I propped the cover open a bit to give good air flow and cold smoked the sausages for 3 hours.
Then I smoked the sausages at 180 F on the pellet smoker until the internal temperature was 157 F.
The Trail Bologna took 3 1/2 hours to get to temperature and the summer sausage took 4 1/2 hours. When the sausages reached temperature, I put them in an ice water bath to stop the cooking.
Then I put the sausage on racks to get more colour.
I put them in the fridge overnight to let the smoke even out and cut.
Here are the final products.
The Smokehouse Summer Sausage has a nice sweet, smoke, salty balance with just a touch of pepper spice. It is a nice product I will make again.
The Backwoods Trail Bologna was something I have never tried before. It is wonderful. This is not your parents bologna. There is a nice spice complexity but the best part is a slow mellow heat that develops as you eat. Not burning hot, just a nice mellow heat. I really like it.