Thursday, April 19, 2007

The Machine

The moment has arrived.

Armed with my new sausage press, I am on my way to school to make Kielbasa--aka Polish sausage--with the kids in my elementary school "food appreciation" classes. The plan is to make about 100 links for the parents dinner that is just a few weeks away.

I bought this beauty from The Sausage Maker in Buffalo, New York. It's all stainless and built in the shape of an elbow macaroni. There's a long handle attached to a plunger, which pushes the meat out through this long tube. The hog casings fit over the tube. It's just a matter of getting a second pair of hands to guide the filled casings to a soft landing, then pinching and twisting the finished product into links.

We have an old, electric grinder--a Rival "Grind-O-Matic"--left to us by my wife's grandmother. It also has stuffing capabilities, but I thought it better to go with something manual that will give us more control. I like the idea of being able to feel the stuffing process through my hand and arm, and it will be easier and more instructive for the kids as well.

Onward, Kielbasa!

I will definitely keep you posted on this.

5 comments:

GreatBigVegChallenge said...

Hope the Kielbasa went well...
Excellent sausage machine...
We are moving on from Cucumber ( we did make gazpacho which was really tasty if a bit chilly for April)
to Chard - know anything clever with this one.

Ed Bruske said...

We love chard. We grow lots of chard in the garden. My favorite way to cook chard is to first saute red onion in a large skillet with extra-virgin olive oil. Then add the chard, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces from the stems all the way through the leaves. Stir in about 1/4 cup raisins and season with salt & pepper. Add a bit of water if it seems too dry. When the chard is very tender, I add pomegrante molasses to taste, usually a couple of teaspoons--it's pretty concentrated stuff.

This is a great side dish with a bit of sweet & sour flavor. You can also mix it with a cooked grain such as couscous.

Some people like chard just for the greens and I think that's a shame. Chard is related to beets, and the stems are very beet-like in flavor. Personally, I think the best flavor is in the stems.

Brilynn said...

I just smoked my own sausage last week, it was amazing!

Aaron said...

That's an awesome stuffer. I'm just a wanna-be sausage maker--I haven't stirred up enough courage yet to make my own.

I'm interested in seeing what you make with it.

Ed Bruske said...

Brilynn, do tell what kind of sausage you made and how you went about smoking it. What was your inspiration?

Aaron, my previous experience with stuffing was with a much more mechanical (e.g. easier) machine. This one requires some upper-body strength, especially using the smaller nozzle. There's a bit of a learning curve, especially working the casings onto the nozzle. I will be going into full-scale production next week, so I will let you know...