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Author Topic: Shakey's Italian Sausage  (Read 385 times)

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Offline Kusz

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Shakey's Italian Sausage
« on: April 02, 2017, 01:52:36 AM »
Hello, I am Larry Kuszmaul from South Dakota and am new to this forum.

I am looking for an Italian Sausage recipe that resembles or copies the early Shakey's Italian Sausage of the late 60s and early 70s.
I have loved Shakey's Pizza since the mid 60s when I had my first at college. I live in South Dakota and there are no places here and worked for a fair time in Minneapolis where I grazed on Shakey's quite often. I was very fond of the Italian Sausage they used on their pizzas from the 60s until I moved to South Dakota in the early 70s. At some point in time when I went back to have their pizza, I was disappointed to find that the sausage that they were using was no longer tasting like the sausage from the late 60s, early 70s.

Does anyone have a recipe that I could use to replicate that sausage or the name of a place where I might be able to get it from?

Offline hodgey1

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #1 on: April 02, 2017, 10:05:39 AM »
I am looking for an Italian Sausage recipe that resembles or copies the early Shakey's Italian Sausage of the late 60s and early 70s.
Welcome again. Can you describe the sausage, including texture, prodominate spice and if it was bulk or in a casing? Also, do you have experience making sausage?

I've been making sausage for years and still have a lot to learn. I found this article very informative and I'm going to make a batch soon.

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2011/09/juicy-sweet-or-hot-italian-sausage.html

I'm nearly certain that any homemade sausage will be superior to the crap sold here in stores, where I live.

Offline Kusz

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2017, 11:10:22 AM »
As I remember, the sausage was in small clumps not formed and sprinkled on the pizza. I don't believe that the sausage was ever in a casing, more in bulk like you purchase hamburger or sausage. It had the right degree of spices as to make it not too hot and not too spicy, but the flavor was fantastic. It had a larger amount of fat in it than the standard kind of sausage, so when cooked up on a pizza, it was very moist and soft to eat. I remember that it has what appeared to have pepper dots in the sausage and also was a bit sweet, but didn't take away from the sausage itself.

I have a recipe that comes somewhat close to what I remember. It calls for already ground pork and then mixing in the spices. I made it once and it was delicious, but what I did was to take all the wet ingredients and pour them over large pieces of the pork roast, then sprinkle on all the dry ingredients and let it marinade for a couple of days in the fridge. Then I ran the pieces through a grinder on course setting so I didn't have to mix the ground pork and take a chance on making it tough, thus keeping it light and moist.

After mixing and grinding everything, I then baked the mixture, keeping it in clumps as small as I could without breaking any of them down, until they were about 2/3s cooked. Then I vacuum packed bags of the sausage for use later on pizza.

I have the recipe that I used and am considering making up a batch, but wanted to check here first before I started my process to see if anyone on this forum might have one that comes even closer to the sausage I remember.

Offline Kusz

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #3 on: April 02, 2017, 01:12:56 PM »
I looked at your recipe and compared it to mine. I see that the recipe that you sent the url for contains Sugar, and Marjoram, which mine does not. Here is my recipe for you to look at. I am considering adding the Sugar and maybe cumin for a smoke taste and maybe, just maybe, the Marjoram.

The Recipe
5 lbs pork butt
5 tsp salt
1 cup minced Italian parsley
5 tbl fennel
1 tsp black pepper
1 cup dry white wine
2 tbl red pepper (to taste)
1 cup caciovallo or pecorino cheese
5 cloves minced garlic

Note: Caciovallo and pecorino are similar to romano cheese. In fact, you will often see romano listed as "pecorino romano."

The pork should have any bone material removed before grinding. Pick out a nice piece of meat that is about 20 to 30 percent marbled fat. This makes for a more tender sausage. Have the butcher corsely grind the pork once.
When mixing the ingredients, keep the meat cold! I suggest placing the meat in the mixing bowl, the putting it in the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes. Don't freeze the meat, but get it, and all your utensils cold! I stress this because pork will smear when it gets a little warm. This leads to an unattractive, and tougher sausage.
Mix half the ingredients in the bowl with your hands using only 2 or three grabs at the meat. Then turn the mass over, and add the remaining ingredients. Mix with your hands for about another minute or so. Overworking the meat will make it tough. That is why you add the ingredients in 2 or more steps. If you are still working the meat after 2 minutes, STOP!
The meat can be made into patties or links, and should be frozen immediately if you are making extra. Links and patties can be kept overnight in your refrigerator for cooking the next day. I have never made sausage links, so I will not tell you how. I use the sausage for pizza. So I divide the meat into five 1lb packages, and freeze them for later use.
If you are using the sausage for pizza, YOU MUST COOK IT FIRST!!! Remember, you are dealing with RAW PORK. Pork must be thouroughly cooked before being eaten or placed on top of pizza.
When cooking the sausage, use a little water in your pan (1/4 inch of water should be enough). This will help cook the sausage without burning it or the seasonings (garlic gets bitter when it burns). The water will also help to drain away some of the fat that makes the sausage so good and tender.


Offline Loarina Vega

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #4 on: April 02, 2017, 02:32:44 PM »
My Last recepie after buying the ground plain pork.  i added Cumin to ... Cumin Was a Mistake.!!! Yuk it ruined the italian flavor... this week's recipe had lemon pepper one tablespoon of vinegar garlic Italian spices like basil and oregano garlic powder seasoning salt the important ingredient fennel seed I put it into meatloaf form I can therefore after it is baked cut in cubes  and Freeze in  small packages in sandwich bags for portion control and it's perfect to breakup for pizza topping and also to add into spaghetti sauce for yummy spaghetti meal........I FORGOT THE SAGE in this recipe
« Last Edit: April 02, 2017, 02:36:01 PM by Loarina Vega »

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Offline hodgey1

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #5 on: April 02, 2017, 07:45:07 PM »
It had a larger amount of fat in it than the standard kind of sausage, so when cooked up on a pizza, it was very moist and soft to eat.

After reading the above, my suggestion was going to be to apply your sausage to your pizza raw. It makes a world of difference compared to precooked.


If you are using the sausage for pizza, YOU MUST COOK IT FIRST!!! Remember, you are dealing with RAW PORK. Pork must be thouroughly cooked before being eaten or placed on top of pizza.

But then I read your next post  :-[ figured that may not be your cup of tea.

When I use sausage on my home oven pizzas, I put it on raw and feel pretty confident that it's throughly cooked after boiling in the sauce for a few minutes, on top of my pies. That's doing 7.5 minute bake. When I use my WFO, I precook the sausage.

Offline vtsteve

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2017, 09:12:51 PM »
Remember, you are dealing with RAW PORK. Pork must be thouroughly cooked before being eaten or placed on top of pizza.

Another fan of cooked-on-the-pie sausage...

I just don't touch the cooked food until I wash my hands. At this point, you're probably more likely to have listeria in the cheese than worms in the pork.
In grams we trust.

Offline RPCLady

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #7 on: April 03, 2017, 12:11:02 AM »
We buy our Italian sausage pre-seasoned/raw in bulk.  We cook it into crumbles so that we can put them on our pies or our take-n-bakes.  The company who makes it can make it in many varying degrees of our box says spicy, although its seems quite mild to my tastes. I consider our pepperoni to have more bite.    Its by Fontanini and we order it through FSA.

Offline Loarina Vega

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2017, 06:19:37 AM »
  but then that Lou Malnati's recipe that he showed a demonstration on a YouTube video they layered it on their Chicago deep dish pizza a full layer of raw sausage I guess that would depend on the ratio the percentage of fat
 Or the flakyness of their secret recipe or the fact this style cooks for 35 min.... In another video ...same pizza style that  chef cooked first and  said that if it was raw in the cooking process it would release some amount of greasiness.  so I guess it could be just trial and error also preference and different types of pizzas and cooking times....... so my next task is to spice my sausage put it on in small dollops Raw and see how my pizza Cooks!!!!
« Last Edit: April 03, 2017, 06:22:35 AM by Loarina Vega »

Offline vtsteve

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2017, 10:12:03 AM »
When I'm putting it on raw, I pinch off a piece and smear it between my thumb and fingertips on the way to the pie; it browns over a larger area and releases more flavor to the cheese and sauce.
In grams we trust.

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Offline Kusz

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #10 on: April 03, 2017, 10:52:55 AM »
May I chime back in here, Please? I think we have gotten off track for the real purpose of my post. I am trying to find a clone to the Italian Sausage that Shakey's used in the late 60s and early 70s. I appreciate all your posts about the technique for cooking the sausage either on or off the pizza, but it's not really on subject for what I was looking for in my post.

Offline vtsteve

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2017, 09:40:06 AM »
Putting "Shakey's sausage" in the Advanced Search (without the quotes) yields 37 hits, including your posts. Many mention that it was 'spicy' (don't know what years), so you might try adding some red pepper flakes to your base recipe. Most of the Shakey's effort to date has focussed on cheese, sauce and dough.
In grams we trust.

Offline Zing

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #12 on: April 09, 2017, 06:54:56 AM »
May I chime back in here, Please? I think we have gotten off track for the real purpose of my post. I am trying to find a clone to the Italian Sausage that Shakey's used in the late 60s and early 70s. I appreciate all your posts about the technique for cooking the sausage either on or off the pizza, but it's not really on subject for what I was looking for in my post.
Historically, we have not had much luck with cloning or identifying ingredients used 45-50 years ago. Back then, different franchisees often used different topping ingredients in different parts of the country. Just keep checking this thread. Someone may find it in a year or two and be able to help.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: Shakey's Italian Sausage
« Reply #13 on: April 09, 2017, 09:25:49 AM »
I fully agree with Zing. The information that Kusz would like to have would have to be insider information, either by seeing an ingredients list or knowledge from a present or former employee with access to that knowledge. But often pizza chains will intentionally keep that information away from the workers in their stores. Most such chains use prepackaged ingredients such as seasoning blends that employees can use to make their in-store sauces, sausage flavorings, etc. And even when there may be an ingredient list, it is easy to hide specific details by using terms like spices, herbs, natural flavors and colors, etc. This is all permissible under FDA rules and regulations. Some commercial preparers and suppliers of spice blends will not even put their names on the packets so that they can't be traced back to them. Instead, they will put the names of the customers (e.g., "Shakey's").

Peter


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