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Dan Doodle

pomai

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A family friend visiting from the east coast introduced us to this most unusual sausage we've never heard of in our life. It's affectionately named Dan Doodle, a.k.a. Tom Thumb.

Here's the complete dish he prepared for us just the other night...



The Dan Doodle slices are (obviously) those meatloaf-lookin' critters at the 6 o'clock spot. He says this is a traditional southern food from North-eastern Carolina. You can only find this sausage in small mom 'n pop stores; never in large supermarkets or warehouse clubs.

It's prepared with pork meat (no innards except the casing) and plenty of spices including sage and red pepper flakes, all stuffed in the small intestine of a hog, then tied at both ends and hung to dry and cure. Some are smoked and some are just dry cured. This one he brought was just dry-cured. It's fairly cheap, costing just a few dollars a pound.

To cook the Dan Doodle, you you simply boil it in salted water until heated through, remove, then add cabbage into the water and cook that down until soft.

Traditionally he says, it's served over the cabbage, with boiled eggs on the side that have sweet pickle relish mixed into the yolk section and stuffed together with the whites, as shown on this plate. There's actually a special serving plate that has indentions around a center for the egg accompaniments.

Along with that are beets, sweet potatoes and boiled fingerling potatoes.

Let me say, this Dan Doodle sausage taste a bit strange by itself; good, but strange. Yet with those relish-stuffed eggs.. oh boy is this a WINNER! It's salted on the medium side, with a mild heat from the pepper flakes and sort of complex spice background. More on the dry than the oily (fatty) side. Again, by itself sort of weird, but with the whole dish, fantastic!

The whole dish together remiinds me of Irish (American) Corned Beef and Cabbage, and for good reason. He says many Irish settlers made Carolina their first home, which is probably who this southern dish originated from.

Anyone else out there familiar with or tried Dan Doodle?
 

guido

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:puzzled:

This Irish bloke has never heard of that, but it seems quite Irish-American.
Kind of like an american Banger.
Sounds interesting. I'm here in Atlanta, and all through the south, I haven't heard of that. I'll have to look for it next time I'm up in NC!
 

cajunsmoker

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The deviled eggs and everything else on the plate is very familiar. Heck I even have one of the plates you described that we do deviled eggs on at easter, but the sausage is a new one on me.
 

msmith

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Pomai Ive never heard of dan doodle either it looks good. But I can tell you how to smoke cabbage thats a whole let better that boiled.
 

shellbellc

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Definitely seems Irish oriented but never heard of it. I used to live in Eastern NC and never heard of it...
 

cajunsmoker

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After reading that recipe Tonto I can't believe there wasn't a Cajun involved there somewhere
 

teacup13

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it looks very german to me as well... the cabbage, the potatoes, especially...

looks like a sausage my dear old Großvater use to make...god rest his soul
 

gofish

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That looks like it would be right up my alley. My eyes will be open for this treat next time I go thru NC .............. this gives me another reason for a 'scenic' detour vs the major hwys (the other reason is the NC State Police love my out-a-state tags)
 

tonto1117

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No doubt Go Fish, Bud got pulled over in NC quite a while back for doing 93mph in a 60mph zone and they through his butt in jail for reckless driving with not so much as another speeding ticket on his record.


Lot's of, $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ $$$$$$$
 

pomai

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Looks like so far everyone's stumped on this one. Kinda' weird that here I am way out in the middle of the Pacific hearing about this before any of y'all out there on the east coast.

Heck, you never know, maybe we might take the recipe and start selling Dan Doodle sausages right in Hawaii! Wouldn't that be wild!


Actually, southern food and/or restaurants are very far and few out here in Hawaii. There's a few rib joints that also feature traditional southern, but I've never tried them personally.

If you take notice to the Dan Doodle slices' shape, it's oblong and actually quite large.. about 2.5"x4" for that larger slice, which verifies it's natural hog intestine casing. I think that's what also gives it that slightly weird flavor... almost like tripe.

Since many of you - even those who have lived in Carolina - have never heard of it, perhaps this is one of those things that a particular mom 'n pop store made, then it caught on in several neighboring towns by word of mouth, but never really went beyond that.

As far as the name, perhaps some young bloke named Dan invented this sausage recipe.. and also enjoyed doodling as a hobby? lol He also got into lots of mischief, hence the other name, "Tom Thumb". A slacking, mischievous sausage maker.

 

tonto1117

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LOL.... but still ....arrested????......might have been the NY lisence plate more likley......
 

cajunsmoker

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You've got to stop calling Bud on the cell and telling him to "hurry home the BBQ is almost ready"
 

gofish

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Shortone

Thanks for the link, I ordered a catalog to drool over.
 

glbyrd

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I grew up eating "Dandoodle" or "Tom Thumb" all my life in rural eastern N.C.--always at Christmas time;  sometimes at Thanksgiving.  It is a delicacy that is probably acquired at birth!  There were two kinds of this sausage, usually based on color: a red or pink dandoodle and a grayish-brown. My Mom always thought the pinkish sausage had more flavor.  It is highly spiced and for those who cook it for the first time, they get a whiff of the old Southern "chittlin's" smell. But is it ever delicious!  It takes a while to cook this depending on the size and one should try not to burst the casing but it is well worth the effort.  Tradition in our family mandated that this sausage be sliced and served with deviled eggs and usually with collard greens.  Oh how I miss this traditional food.  Anyone know where they can be bought here in or near southwest Virginia? Or w  here I could buy one and have it shipped? I also live near the N.C.-VA line about 45 miles north of Greensboro, N.C.  I have traveled over 400 miles down home just to get this delicacy in the past for Christmas but traveling is a bit difficult for me these days.
 

smokin - k

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I grew up eating "Dandoodle" or "Tom Thumb" all my life in rural eastern N.C.--always at Christmas time;  sometimes at Thanksgiving.  It is a delicacy that is probably acquired at birth!  There were two kinds of this sausage, usually based on color: a red or pink dandoodle and a grayish-brown. My Mom always thought the pinkish sausage had more flavor.  It is highly spiced and for those who cook it for the first time, they get a whiff of the old Southern "chittlin's" smell. But is it ever delicious!  It takes a while to cook this depending on the size and one should try not to burst the casing but it is well worth the effort.  Tradition in our family mandated that this sausage be sliced and served with deviled eggs and usually with collard greens.  Oh how I miss this traditional food.  Anyone know where they can be bought here in or near southwest Virginia? Or w  here I could buy one and have it shipped? I also live near the N.C.-VA line about 45 miles north of Greensboro, N.C.  I have traveled over 400 miles down home just to get this delicacy in the past for Christmas but traveling is a bit difficult for me these days.
http://virginiatraditions.com/product.asp_Q_pn_E_9134

Hey Glbyrd... See above link that Short One posted... These guys are based out of Surry, VA... Looks like they will ship it to you... Happy Smoking, Smokin - K
 

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