Author Topic: Sweet Italian Sausage  (Read 13270 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #20 on: April 28, 2009, 10:48:56 PM »
Not to totally get this thread OT, but Terry your wrong here. You may or may not call it Italian sausage, but there are many many places that make Mild Italian Sausage, and that has no fennel.
In your opinion. In mine you are wrong.


Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #21 on: April 28, 2009, 10:50:18 PM »
Not to totally get this thread OT, but Terry your wrong here. You may or may not call it Italian sausage, but there are many many places that make Mild Italian Sausage, and that has no fennel.
There may be sweet italaina sausages but the sausage that 99% of people call Italian sausage is what I call fennel sausage.

Offline jeff v

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1369
  • Location: Orland Park, IL
  • I'm Valentino not Varasano :)
    • Pizzeria Valentino
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #22 on: April 28, 2009, 10:51:20 PM »
Yes, I'm using Morton's Kosher salt.

I did do the small patty fried in a pan taste test and it seemed bland.  

I had a buddy that at one time knew what Fabbri was putting in their sweet Italian sausage.  When I asked him to think hard about it he gave me "the fennel is the important part".   ::) Thanks, I know that.  I was asking him to think back to over 20 years ago, though.  I've seen coriander, oregano, basil, parsley, sweet paprika, anise seed, and carraway seed in various recipes but I know it's just a very simple sausage.  It's just getting the amount of seasoning right.  It looks like some NY sweet sausages do not use fennel but I know most of these Chicago pizza places use sausage with fennel with the exception of maybe Uno's and Malnati's...maybe.  I know you'll tease me about this but I think Johnsonville's "Natural" sweet Italian sausage is good (the bulk package not the links) and it uses fennel and "fresh basil".

Jeff, how much are you making?  I can scale the recipe or just make a larger batch.  I live in Iowa, hogs galore, I'm buying 3 lbs. of pork shoulder for under $5.  

Loo

loo,

I suppose you can like Johnsonville, as long as it's on an anonymous internet forum.  :P

I won't be home til Friday night, so I can get you the recipe then if you'd like. I want to say it's 4T per 6lbs of meat and fat, but I can let you know for sure.

Jeff

Offline jeff v

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1369
  • Location: Orland Park, IL
  • I'm Valentino not Varasano :)
    • Pizzeria Valentino
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #23 on: April 28, 2009, 11:01:54 PM »
In your opinion. In mine you are wrong.

Nevermind.

BTW November-I was not referring to pizza shops, rather sausage producers. I am aware most people assume that all Italian sausage contains fennel. This is not the case.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2009, 11:52:22 PM by jeff v »

Offline November

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1876
  • Location: North America
  • Come for the food. Stay for the science.
    • Uncle Salmon
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #24 on: April 28, 2009, 11:18:58 PM »
Italian sausage in the United States is generally identified as containing fennel just as the aforementioned Wikipedia article stated.  If it were not so, U.S. pizza operators who offer both sausage and Italian sausage would be in a true marketing fix.  How else is a consumer supposed to know the difference between "sausage" and "Italian sausage" when the "Italian sausage" might not contain fennel?  Many chains offer both.  The one I worked at many years ago certainly did, and the difference was unmistakably fennel.

Perhaps those of you who don't believe that the sausage nominally known as "Italian" contains fennel could explain what consumers are to look for and expect in the differences between said sausages when they order a pizza.

I italicize the term "nominally" above to emphasize that what we're talking about is a nominal classification, not taxonomic.  In the same way a "two-by-four" is not actually 2" x 4".

- red.november

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #25 on: April 28, 2009, 11:42:24 PM »

My opinion just happens to align with some of the most well known sausage makers in Chicago, and NY who happen to also be Italian.


As does mine.

Offline November

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1876
  • Location: North America
  • Come for the food. Stay for the science.
    • Uncle Salmon
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #26 on: April 28, 2009, 11:45:20 PM »
And just to make this more official, the USDA claims Italian sausage contains fennel and/or anise.  (Probably where the Wikipedia information originated.)

'"Italian Sausage Products" are cured or uncured sausages containing at least 85% meat, or a combination of meat and fat, with the total fat content constituting not more than 35% of the finished product. It contains salt, pepper, fennel and/or anise and no more than 3% water. Optional ingredients permitted in Italian Sausages are spices (including paprika) and flavorings, red or green peppers, onions, garlic and parsley, sugar, dextrose and corn syrup.'

http://www.fsis.usda.gov/FactSheets/Sausage_and_Food_Safety/index.asp

I hope the debate can draw to a close now.

- red.november

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #27 on: April 28, 2009, 11:48:37 PM »
And just to make this more official, the USDA claims Italian sausage contains fennel and/or anise.  (Probably where the Wikipedia information originated.)

'"Italian Sausage Products" are cured or uncured sausages containing at least 85% meat, or a combination of meat and fat, with the total fat content constituting not more than 35% of the finished product. It contains salt, pepper, fennel and/or anise and no more than 3% water. Optional ingredients permitted in Italian Sausages are spices (including paprika) and flavorings, red or green peppers, onions, garlic and parsley, sugar, dextrose and corn syrup.'

http://www.fsis.usda.gov/FactSheets/Sausage_and_Food_Safety/index.asp

I hope the debate can draw to a close now.

- red.november

Sounds good to me!

Offline jeff v

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1369
  • Location: Orland Park, IL
  • I'm Valentino not Varasano :)
    • Pizzeria Valentino
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #28 on: April 28, 2009, 11:55:17 PM »
Italian sausage in the United States is generally identified as containing fennel just as the aforementioned Wikipedia article stated.  If it were not so, U.S. pizza operators who offer both sausage and Italian sausage would be in a true marketing fix.  How else is a consumer supposed to know the difference between "sausage" and "Italian sausage" when the "Italian sausage" might not contain fennel?  Many chains offer both.  The one I worked at many years ago certainly did, and the difference was unmistakably fennel.

Perhaps those of you who don't believe that the sausage nominally known as "Italian" contains fennel could explain what consumers are to look for and expect in the differences between said sausages when they order a pizza.

I italicize the term "nominally" above to emphasize that what we're talking about is a nominal classification, not taxonomic.  In the same way a "two-by-four" is not actually 2" x 4".

- red.november

Nominally indeed. The pork sausage used at the pizza store I worked at way back when was pre cooked, and closer to breakfast sausage. The Italian sausage was bulk raw sausage. I don't remeber if it contained fennel.

ETA: I don't want to start with my thoughts in the USDA, and how that does or doesn't support your case.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2009, 12:00:49 AM by jeff v »

Offline November

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1876
  • Location: North America
  • Come for the food. Stay for the science.
    • Uncle Salmon
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #29 on: April 29, 2009, 12:05:15 AM »
Nominally indeed.

I think it's important to state that it's nominal only, otherwise it may be confused with other sausage products of Italy.  However, that is the whole point of labeling though: to eliminate confusion.  That is why I think the USDA (the organization responsible for maintaining food labeling standards in the U.S.) has the last word on the matter.


Offline November

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1876
  • Location: North America
  • Come for the food. Stay for the science.
    • Uncle Salmon
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #30 on: April 29, 2009, 12:10:04 AM »
ETA: I don't want to start with my thoughts in the USDA, and how that does or doesn't support your case.

There's a question over whether the USDA can support my case?  That's pretty funny.  You're talking about the agency that can shut you down if you label the food products you manufacture wrong.

Offline tdeane

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 486
  • Age: 42
  • Location: British Columbia, Canada
    • Pizzeria Barbarella
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #31 on: April 29, 2009, 12:21:18 AM »
I don't think Italian(fennel) sausage is actually Italian is it? It's more of a American or Italian American thing, I thought. Do they eat sausage and peppahs in Italy?

Offline Matthew

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 2225
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #32 on: April 29, 2009, 07:44:38 AM »
My family is from Sicily has been making sausage for decades & fennel is a matter of taste, some of my family members love it & some of them hate it.  When my parents make sausage they make a batch with & a batch without.  Like pizza, sausage recipes vary from region to region.  Is is one more authentic than the other? No! My wife's grandmother is from Rome & uses orange peel in her sausage & no fennel because that's how it is made in her town.  There are probably thousands of different sausage recipes within various regions in Italy & if they don't contain fennel does it make it "non italian"?  IMO, Commercially manufactured "so called" italian sausage with or without fennel is about as far from authentic as you can get.  It is only labelled as such so that it can be identified by the average person with no sausage knowledge.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2009, 07:46:52 AM by Matthew »

Offline mmarston

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 534
  • Location: Altamont, NY (Albany)
  • I can stop eating Pizza any time I want!
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #33 on: April 29, 2009, 07:55:45 AM »
Well said, Matthew.

Michael
Nobody cares if you can't dance well.  Just get up and dance.  Dave Barry

Offline November

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1876
  • Location: North America
  • Come for the food. Stay for the science.
    • Uncle Salmon
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #34 on: April 29, 2009, 08:35:26 AM »
It is only labelled as such so that it can be identified by the average person with no sausage knowledge.

That's partly true.  I wouldn't say that a Chinese buffet is labeled "Chinese" because the average person has no knowledge of food consumed in China.  It's labeled such because it's as close to authentic Chinese food the average person would want to eat.  Can you imagine Americans eating fish head soup and millet from a buffet?

Offline Matthew

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 2225
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #35 on: April 29, 2009, 09:07:18 AM »
That's partly true.  I wouldn't say that a Chinese buffet is labeled "Chinese" because the average person has no knowledge of food consumed in China.  It's labeled such because it's as close to authentic Chinese food the average person would want to eat.  Can you imagine Americans eating fish head soup and millet from a buffet?

I meant it more as a visual.  Most commercially produced sausage looks very similar & could be very easily confused without proper labelling.   A prime example is Chorizo & hot Italian.
Bring on the fish heads!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ;D
« Last Edit: April 29, 2009, 09:08:54 AM by Matthew »

Offline November

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1876
  • Location: North America
  • Come for the food. Stay for the science.
    • Uncle Salmon
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #36 on: April 29, 2009, 09:09:52 AM »
Most commercially produced sausage looks very similar & could be very easily confused.

That is certainly true.  Hence the reason for the attempt at labeling standards in the United States.

For some additional perspective, I don't see anyone getting in an uproar over the labeling of Canadian bacon.  It's not as though the term refers to its place of origin.  It just a back bacon cut.  An even more important illustration is the Neapolitan pizza.  Neapolitan pizza is simply a style.  It's not as though everyone in Naples, Italy always make pizza that way.  It's just a label.

- red.november

Offline Matthew

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 2225
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #37 on: April 29, 2009, 09:21:48 AM »
That is certainly true.  Hence the reason for the attempt at labeling standards in the United States.

For some additional perspective, I don't see anyone getting in an uproar over the labeling of Canadian bacon. 
- red.november

Hmm! Anyone feel like starting a new thread? ;) I am born & raised in Canada & don't know much at all about Canadian Bacon except that it's much leaner than regular bacon.

Offline loowaters

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 610
  • Age: 44
  • Location: Somewhere...in Iowa.
  • Where's my knife and fork?
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #38 on: April 29, 2009, 10:30:32 AM »
I won't be home til Friday night, so I can get you the recipe then if you'd like. I want to say it's 4T per 6lbs of meat and fat, but I can let you know for sure.

Jeff

Yes, please, Jeff, I'd love to see it and possibly give it a try. 
Using pizza to expand my waistline since 1969!

Offline jeff v

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 1369
  • Location: Orland Park, IL
  • I'm Valentino not Varasano :)
    • Pizzeria Valentino
Re: Sweet Italian Sausage
« Reply #39 on: April 29, 2009, 12:16:31 PM »
There's a question over whether the USDA can support my case?  That's pretty funny.  You're talking about the agency that can shut you down if you label the food products you manufacture wrong.

So permissable = right?

This is an area for "nominal" only IMO, because obviously this is more for safety than authenticity. I wonder what would happen if I asked my buthcher to throw some corn syrup, and dextrose for me in his next batch?


 

pizzapan