The hubby has discovered charcuterie, “the branch of cooking devoted to prepared meat products, such as bacon, ham, sausage, terrines, galantines, ballotines, pâtés, and confit, primarily from pork.” I, personally, am loving it. After faithfully following recipes for a while, he finally decided it was time to branch out with his own recipe. Thanks to a successful moose hunt and some local beef, he came up with a homemade moose summer sausage.
When the hubby started making sausages, he faithfully followed recipes from Charcuterie by Michael Ruhlman and Brian Polcyn. It’s a great book for beginners and those who have been home curing meats for a while. The recipes are delicious. We’re completely sold on the brine recipe for chickens and turkeys. My family has let the hubby know that he is cooking every holiday turkey from here on out using this recipe, after the delicious success with our Christmas turkey.
Homemade Moose Summer Sausage
3 lbs moose (or any venison)
2 lbs beef
1 Tablespoon black pepper
1 teaspoon mustard powder
2 teaspoon mustard seed
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoon coriander
2 1/2 Tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon Instacure #1 (pink salt)
3 Tablespoon dextrose
1/2 cup Fermento with 1/4 to 1/2 cup water to make a thin paste
1/4 cup red wine
3/4 cup ice cold water
Cut moose and beef (You can also use a 3/2 beef/ pork mix in this sausage instead of venison) into approximately 1 inch chunks. In a large, cold stainless steel bowl, mix meat, kosher salt, Instacure, and dextrose. Mix well.
Grind this mixture using a large die. Use a cold stainless steel bowl for this also. The meat needs to be kept cold to stay hard and avoid becoming soft and melting the fat. (The hubby uses this grinder.)
First grind using the large die.
In a small bowl, mix the Fermento in just enough water for it to become a thin paste. Stir in pepper, mustard power, mustard seed, onion powder, garlic powder, and coriander.
Add spice mix to the ground meat. Add wine and water. Mix with paddle attachment in stand mixer or stir by hand for two minutes.
Pack the mix firmly into a large bowl, being sure to remove any air pockets. Place the plastic wrap directly over the meat, so no air touches the meat. Refrigerate for 48 hours. This allows the sausage to cure and result in a firmer and more brightly colored sausage.
Re-grind the mix using a small die.
Stuff the mix into 1.5″x 12″ clear fibrous casings. Pinprick casings to allow juices to drip while smoking. Hang and allow to dry for two hours at room temperature. (The hubby uses this sausage press.)
Cold-smoke the sausages for two hours at the lowest possible temperature. After two hours, turn the heat up to 180 degrees and smoke until the sausages reach an internal temperature of 150 degrees. (The hubby uses this.) The sausages will be an even brown color and will feel firm. (We use this smoker for sausages, fish, and more!)
The hubby used a handy bacon hook to hang the sausages in the smoker.
Remove the sausages and hang for another two hours at room temperature. They will “bloom” and turn a dark mahogany color. Store in the refrigerator and enjoy!
OR if you don’t have a smoker…
Add 1 teaspoon of liquid smoke to the original recipe (or 2 if you like lots of smokiness). Form loose meat into a sausage form (not in casings) and wrap with foil, shiny side in. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for an hour and a half. Store in the fridge.
Both versions of this summer sausage are ready to eat and don’t have to be cooked further.
We cooked one sausage in the oven, so we could see the differences. The taste was much more mild than the smoked sausage, although it’s still good. The texture is still similar, although it looks very different! We will probably stick to smoking summer sausage from here on out, (the smokiness is delicious!) but it’s good to know we have another option.
Baked on the left, smoked on the right. Both tasty!
Also check out Salumi by Michael Ruhlman and Brian Polcyn! The hubby got this one for Christmas!