For years, I had wanted a meat grinding attachment for my mixer, and I finally got one back in January. I wanted to grind my own meats, make my own burgers, sausages, perfectly ground chili meat. You get my drift. And for some reason, I had a bee in my bonnet to make sausages to serve on Memorial Day.
Had to happen. No way was I going to buy a perfectly delicious brat from the grocery store. Had to make my own sausages and have a crowd for Memorial Day be my first run. A logic now I can’t seem to follow, but at the time seemed really smart and gourmet.
I watched Anne Burrell make sausage on her TV show and the recipe looked really tasty, so I went with that one. You can find her recipe here. Not only did the recipe look tasty, but it looked easy enough to make. Why not try it.
So I got all of my meat grinder stuff out and attached. Collected all my ingredients and got everything cubed and chopped. So far, so good.
Then I started to grind the meat.
Nothing was happening. The meat wasn’t coming out like it should have been. It was like it was getting stuck or something. I looked and tried to access the problem. Tried to push through the meat again. Only got a few straggles of meat.
I was starting to get frustrated. So I turned to YouTube and watched a few videos, and all their meat was spewing out of the grinder and everyone was talking about how quick and easy it is to grind your own meat.
Why was I having a problem? Went back to the grinder for another attempt. By now, my efforts had gone longer than an hour and I maybe had a 1/2 cup of ground meat.
I pick up my cell phone and get Sean on the horn. Knowing he cannot do a thing while he’s at work, and not to forget that the man doesn’t cook nor knows any cooking lingo. But whatevs, I call him anyway.
“Brooke, don’t worry about it. I’ll watch some videos and check things out. We’ll work on it in the morning.”
The morning comes, I get the meat back out of the fridge, and I set things back up. Then Sean sees something on the counter.
“Brooke, what’s this?”
“I have no idea. I’ve never seen it before.”
So Sean goes over to the instruction manual and finds the piece, then looks at me with a lot of heart and a pinch of duhhh.
“Brooke. It’s the blade. It’s the blade, Brooke. You have to have the blade attached in order to grind meat.”
I’ve never felt so small. I slapped my forehead with the palm of my hand and wanted to crawl under the prep table.
We attached the blade and the meat was ground in less than 5 minutes. Seriously.
It’s all about the blade.
Trying to get the sausage in casing is a whole other story. Just know that the sausages were then formed by hand. Not as pretty, but so delicious!
And there you have it. My first attempt at making sausage story.
Although the chefs on TV make this process look easy, it is one that takes a lot of patience and practice. And I’m bound and determined to hone this skill.
P.S. This recipe can be made without a meat grinder. Buy ground pork from your butcher, combine with all ingredients and let the pork marinate for 24 hours before forming into sausages.