Andouille sausage

Andouille sausage

By
From
The Hang Fire Cookbook
Makes
12

Pronounced ‘and-oo-ee’ this spicy Cajun-smoked pork sausage will set your taste buds alight. This truly is one of our favourite sausages to make and smoke, and to use in any of our Louisiana side dishes. Much like chaurice, this sausage is ubiquitous throughout Louisiana. However, unlike its French origin, we won’t be making this with tripe and intestines, but with prime pork shoulder and pork back fat. Read our helpful notes (below) before you start making the sausages. As an aside, the filé powder used below is made from the ground leaves of the North American Sassafras tree. It adds a distinctive, earthy flavour and is also used as a thickening agent in Louisiana cooking.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1 teaspoon see method for ingredients
1.25kg boneless pork shoulder, cut into 5cm cubes
225g pork back fat, cut into small cubes
60g * louisiana seasonings [rid:33207]
2 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons fat-free milk powder
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 teaspoons freshly cracked black pepper
1 tablespoon fine sea salt
2 teasapoons file powder
1 teasapoon chilli powder
1 teasapoon crushed red chillies
1 teasapoon ground cumin
natural hog casing, 5m x 36/40, soaked overnight in water and drained

Method

  1. First, put the coarse blade of your meat grinder in the freezer. In a large bowl, combine the Prague Powder #1 with 1 tablespoon of water to dissolve. Add the pork shoulder, pork fat, Cajun seasoning, paprika, milk powder, garlic, black pepper, salt, filé, chilli powder, red chillies and cumin and mix well. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  2. Pass the meat through a meat grinder fitted with your coarse blade. Return the mix back into the bowl, cover tightly with cling film, and refrigerate overnight.
  3. The next day, test the seasoning of your sausage mix. Heat a dash of oil in a frying pan and add a small piece of the sausage mix. Fry over medium heat for a few minutes, until thoroughly cooked. Have a taste and add more seasoning if necessary.
  4. When you’re ready to make your sausage, turn your kitchen tap on to a slow, steady flow. Hook the hog casing over the end of the tap and flush with water for a few minutes. Squeeze all of the water out of the casing. This is a good time to check the casing for any holes in the casing, if any water comes spouting out, cut that bit out and check another piece.
  5. Using the sausage attachment on a stand mixer, push about 1 metre of casing on the hose attachment and tie the end. Start slowly feeding your mix into the casing, holding the sausage as you go. (You might find it useful to have a large bowl handy for the sausage to drop into.) When you have the individual sausage length you’re after, stop feeding the meat through, pinch the sausage casing with your thumb and forefinger and twist to whatever length you like – 15cm is about right.
  6. The next stage is to smoke the sausages. We use sausage sticks to smoke our sausage, which are basically stainless steel pieces of dowelling, and we wrap the sausages around them. When you’ve made your links, you need to allow them some drying time. You can either hang them in your fridge for 2 hours or hang your sausages in front of a fan for 1 hour before smoking. The skins should be dry to the touch and the sausages should look a little darker in colouring.
  7. This stage will test your smoking skills a little. You want to creep the temperature of your smoker up from 60°C to 71°C throughout the cook time, which could be around the 3–4 hour mark, to get maximum smoke flavour without overcooking and rendering the fats too quickly. Add your wood (oak, hickory or cherry) at the start and again as and when it burns out. Check the temperature of the sausages after 2 hours. You’re aiming for the internal temperature of your sausage to reach 74°C. Remove them from the smoker at this point and immediately spray liberally with cold water. Hang at room temperature in front of a fan for 1 hour, then refrigerate overnight, uncovered, before eating.
  8. The sausages will keep for 3–4 days in the fridge and freeze very well for up to 3 months.

Cooking methods

  • Indirect Grilling/Smoking

Wood

  • Oak, Hickory or Cherry

Sausage-making tips

  • When making sausage, it’s helpful to keep the blades and the chopping bowl in the freezer. We go as far as to stand the chopping bowl in an ice bath to keep the minced meat as cold as possible. Be methodical and keep your equipment clean and sanitised, washing it immediately after use, and keep work surfaces free of debris. Making sausage can be a messy business.

    Fat tastes good: There are a couple of options with adding pork fat: either add chopped up pieces to your sausage mixture (think black pudding fatty bits), or grind the pork fat as in the recipe above depending on the texture you want. We like to freeze the fat before it’s cut, making it easier to chop up or go through the grinder.

    Gimme some skin: We always recommended using natural casings. Collagen skins, although much easier to work with, won’t really give you that sausage ‘snap’ bite, or that authentic sausage texture. Hog casings are a little easier to work with than sheep casings. However if you want a thinner sausage, try switching to the smaller, sheep casings. You’ll likely need to soak the natural casings overnight.

A Note on Prague Powder #1

  • We recommend using this so you can keep your sausage making adventures safe for you and anyone else eating them. It has a combination of table salt and sodium nitrite, which not only helps prevent the build up of nasty bacteria but also preserves the colour of the meat, preventing it from looking grey when cooked. Read the instructions on your packet of Prague Powder #1 carefully, it’s potentially harmful if not used in the correct way.
Tags:
barbecue
BBQ
Southern
America
Deep South
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