Tag Archives: Sausage

Homemade Breakfast Sausage

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Have you ever made your own sausage?

I consider sausage to be one of those real comfort foods—perfect for fall. But I also prefer to get my purchase my meat from quality sources (grass-fed, preferably local). This creates a problem in our area if we have a hankerin’ for some sausage, since once cannot and will not find pastured pork, turkey, chicken, or any other variety of sausage within a one-hour radius of my house. Sure, I could go to Sprouts in Lubbock and spend $8 on a package of six bison sausages, but why would I when I can make my own sausage in very little time at all, using quality ingredients of my own compilation and leaving out the stuff I just don’t need (nitrates/nitrites, excess salt, excess fat, etc.), and save so much money while I’m at it? Plus, when you have fresh flavors such as apple, sage, and fennel, who needs the store-bought stuff??

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Am I alone in that I tend to feel sick if I eat sausages in the morning? I used to love eating breakfast sausage until I realized that I felt sick every morning after I ate it. I realize now it was the excess grease. But since my pork was rather lean, I didn’t get that sickly feeling with this sausage! Another win!

 

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Apple-Sage Breakfast Sausage
Adapted from FineCooking.com

1 apple, diced finely (I used a jazz apple)
1/2 small onion (or one very tiny onion), diced fine
1 lb ground pork
1 small bunch (about 1/4 cup) fresh sage, minced fine
3/4 tsp fennel seeds, crushed (I used an old coffee grinder)
1/2 tsp whole allspice, crushed
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients together in a medium bowl until well distributed. Cover the bowl well with plastic wrap and park the bowl in the fridge for at least an hour, but preferably overnight.

In the morning (or afternoon or evening…), set a cast iron skillet to medium-high. Once heated, take about a 2-ounce portion of the pork mixture and form it into a patty. Cook on the cast iron skillet, flipping occasionally, so that the outside gets a slight crust and the inside is cooked thoroughly. No, you do not need to use additional oil. There is plenty of fat in the pork itself.

Serve with roasted sweet potatoes and poached eggs. Winking smile

 

 

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Mmmm. Tastes a little like Christmas.

Barbecue vs. Cookout

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When in Texas, there is a marked difference between a barbecue and a cookout.

A barbecue will serve barbecue. And in Texas, barbecue means brisket. Maybe sausage, too, but something will be cooking low and slow over a great deal of smoke, and it ain’t burgers.

A cookout has free reign of everything else. Burgers, hot dogs, steaks, whatever.

Except chicken. Why on earth would you bring chicken to a cookout?!

Anyway, I’m visiting Edgar’s family in the Canadian-Higgins area (just barely on the right side of the Texas-Oklahoma border. And by right side I mean the left side) for the Easter weekend, and today we met up with some of their friends on their land for a cookout.

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There’s something endearing about seeing a lot full of pickup trucks.

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We brought Maggie!

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After about 30 minutes of dragging her around on the leash, we decided to let her roam free. And boy did she ever! She was like a fly on steroids buzzing around the area! She had a blast!

Though I don’t think she was too sure of the stream.

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My father-in-law supplied the fine hors d’oeuvres… (tortilla chips with onion, jalepeno slices, pimentos, and cheese)

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…while some of the other men started up the grill.

If you were wondering, cowboy hats in Texas really are fairly common. It’s not a myth.

 

Well, maybe it is if you’re from the city.

 

But most of Texas isn’t “city,” so there ya go.

 

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Cowboy coffee!

Well, almost.

It would be if I could see a sock.

Well, there could be a sock. I didn’t ask.

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The hostess of the evening showed us some sausage another guest brought up from Elgin (near Austin) for this cookout. Probably not something I’d purchase myself but I sure don’t turn it down when it’s served to me! It was mighty tasty!

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Ahh, the combined smell of mesquite, meat, and carcinogens. It can’t be beat.

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It’s one of Edgar’s favorite smells. That and fired gunpowder.

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Speaking of Edgar….

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A guest brought homemade cheese breadsticks! They were really good!

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There was also chips and dip, pinto beans, fruit, and some mayonnaise-y salad mixes, but yeah. You don’t go to cookout and expect to see anything green, except the lettuce.

After stuffing ourselves silly on burgers and sausage, they pulled out the dessert: buttermilk cake and cherry cobbler. The cobbler is hidden in that red container. I got a little shutter-happy and didn’t wait to photograph the cobbler because I was too excited about…

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…HOMEMADE ICE CREAM!

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My food baby and I are very happy. :]

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Oh, and apparently we’re coming back to Plainview with 6 lbs of free pastured beef from Edgar’s family friends’ ranch! Wooooot! That and two loves of Great Harvest bread (honey whole wheat and Dakota!) we picked up in Amarillo last night. Smile

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Oh, and while we’re on the subject of Amarillo, last night we ate dinner at Jason’s Deli. For me it was only the second time in my life to eat there. The other time was when I was in 7th grade.

I’d like to make this special public service announcement that the Wild Salmon-Wich is floggin’ awesome.

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“Grilled wild salmon marinated in balsamic vinaigrette, guacamole, roma tomatoes, leafy lettuce, smoked red pepper-cilantro aioli on toasted focaccia.”

That is all.

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What do you like to eat at a cookout? What about a barbecue?

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