Hello to all of you! I've always been an avid pizza-fan, and have come here to learn, and share information about pizza.
I didn't realize until today that I have been pretty lucky all my life, having my father as a butcher, I have learned many many tricks of the trade when it comes to making homemade sausages, and of course pepperoni. If any of you would like tips on how to make these meats, or want me to make you some, I will gladly try to fulfill your requests!
First off, I'd like to share 2 recipes with you, not for crust, sauce, or cheese, but of course homemade meats.
#1: How to make your owm homemade pepperoni.
7 pounds pre-frozen or certified pork butt, cubed, fat included
3 pounds lean beef chuck, round or shank, cubed
5 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
3 tablespoons sweet paprika
1 tablespoons crushed anise seed
1 teaspoon garlic, very finely minced
1 cup dry red wine
1/2 teaspoon ascorbic acid
1 teaspoon saltpeter
6 feet small (1/2-inch diameter) hog casings
Grind the pork and beef through the coarse disk separately. Mix the meats together with the remaining ingredients. Spread the mixture out in a large pan, cover loosely with waxed paper, and cure in the refrigerator for twenty-four hours.
Prepare the casings (see instructions below). Stuff the sausage into the casings and twist off into then-inch links. Using cotton twine, tie two separate knots between every other link, and one knot at the beginning and another at the end of the stuffed casing. Cut between the double knots. This results in pairs of ten-inch links. The pepperoni are hung by a string tied to the center of each pair.
Hang the pepperoni to dry for six to eight weeks. Once dried, the pepperoni will keep, wrapped, in the refrigerator for several months.
Preparing the Casing
Snip off about four feet of casing. (Better too much than too little because any extra can be repacked in salt and used later.) Rinse the casing under cool running water to remove any salt clinging to it. Place it in a bowl of cool water and let it soak for about half an hour. While you're waiting for the casing to soak, you can begin preparing the meat as detailed below. After soaking, rinse the casing under cool running water. Slip one end of the casing over the faucet nozzle. Hold the casing firmly on the nozzle, and then turn on the cold water, gently at first, and then more forcefully. This procedure will flush out any salt in the casing and pinpoint any breaks. Should you find a break, simply snip out a small section of the casing. Place the casing in a bowl of water and add a splash of white vinegar. A tablespoon of vinegar per cup of water is sufficient. The vinegar softens the casing a bit more and makes it more transparent, which in turn makes your sausage more pleasing to the eye. Leave the casing in the water/vinegar solution until you are ready to use it. Rinse it well and drain before stuffing.
The Trichinosis Problem
Several cases of trichinosis are reported in the United States every year. The number of cases each year is declining, but the possibility of trichinosis contamination is still a real possibility. Trichinosis is a disease caused by a parasitic roundworm, Trichinella spiralis, or, in English, trichina. The worm, found in some pork and bear meat, can be transmitted to humans if the meat is eaten raw or untreated. Trichinae mature in a person's intestines and are usually killed by the body's defenses. Some, however, can survive in the form of cysts in various muscles for years. Trichinosis, however, need not be a problem for the home sausage maker. In the case of fresh pork not used for sausage, the meat need only be cooked to an internal temperature of 137 degrees F. Pork to be consumed raw, as in dried sausage, can be made completely safe and free of trichinae by freezing it to -200 degrees F. for six to twelve days, -100 degrees F. for ten to twenty days or 5 degrees F for twenty to thirty days. An accurate freezer thermometer is a must if you intend to prepare pork for dried sausage. These guidelines have been set by the USDA for commercial packers and are perfectly safe if followed by the home sausage maker. Never taste raw pork and never sample sausage if it contains raw pork that hasn't been treated as we have described.
Yield: 10 pounds
This recipe has worked very well for me, and my fathers' was quite quite similar, but there are some things I just can't give out, especially with this family recipe.
This recipe however, can be found (re attach the spaced parts, cannot post links I guess) right there, and I take no part in claiming this recipe, because I would never want to claim someone elses wonderful work!
Savory Country Sausage, (Not that stuff you buy in the supermarkets, that is horrible, pure grease and nothing but it!)
This recipe is one my grandfather came up with, and I am proud to say that I can claim this one, in ways of course.
I will only post a recipe for around 1 lb of sausage.
1 lb ground pork, lean but not super lean, around 85/15.
Around 4-5 tbs of Morton Meatloaf and Sausage Seasoning,
2.5-3 tbs. Morton Iodized Salt,
Garlic, there are two ways to go about this, you can either mince 4 cloves of garlic, but very very very finely minced, or use around 2-4 tbs of garlic powder, which is a lot easier, and still tastes wonderful.
1-2 tbs of course ground pepper.
This recipe is pretty accurate, but it all really depends on your tastes, once again, I must stress the fact that I have always made this in large batches, around 50-100 lbs each, and just know by looks when I have the right amount, so if this ends up tasting horrible to you, please tell me so I can experiment with the percentages!