Long before I even became pregnant with Mr. Happy, I started making my own breakfast sausage. By that point, Mr. Charm’s food issues had started our “reading labels” adventure, and I was sort of disgusted by what I found in most breakfast sausages. It was enough to make you go vegetarian! (almost)
So I went online to teach myself how to make my own sausage, and really, it’s surprisingly easy!
Here’s what you do:
Make up your spices. You can put together any spice mix you like…hot, mild, savory, sweet, Italian, whatever floats your boat! I found a recipe we rather liked online, but have since tweaked it a little bit (and probably will again!). Since I was not blogging at the time, I didn’t bookmark her link, I simply copied the recipe and stuck it in my recipe binder. However, I’d LOVE to give this lady credit for it, because the thing I liked best was her methodology: make a big ol’ batch of spice mix, store it in a jar, and it’s ready to go whenever you need it! So if this rings a bell for you, please let me know who to give credit to!
Get a pound of ground pork. A trick to this is to watch the sales; I’ve found whole pork butt or whole pork shoulder on sale for as little as $1.99 per pound. The butcher at the grocery store is usually happy to grind up however much you want and package it for you, too, so keep an eye on the sales and when you can find it – stock up! (I purposefully bought 30 pounds of ground pork once. Funny thing is – not one person in the grocery store thought that was strange!)
When we were buying pre-made sausage patties, the best sale price I ever found for a 1 lb. package of sausage meat was $2.69. Regular full price was $3.99. So making your own is incredibly cheap, too!
Take that pound of meat, add your spices, and mush it all together with your hands.
Get out a long piece of saran wrap and lay it on the counter. Dump your meat on top.
Form it into a long tube; I just use the saran wrap to form it, holding each edge and rolling the meat back and forth until it gets to be about the size of a store-bought tube of sausage patty meat. Then I fold one long side of the saran wrap over and pull on the other long side while using my fingers to press the sausage into a tight tube shape. You could use the flat edge of a cookie sheet for this step, but I find my fingers work just fine!
Once you’re done that, wrap the saran wrap completely around the sausage lengthwise. At that point, grab the end of the sausage tube and start twisting the saran wrap tightly; in just a few turns, you’ll see the sausage start squishing into a nicely rounded, “professional” looking sausage roll! Repeat with the other end.
Now you have a gorgeous, nicely tubular sausage roll, all ready to go.
Now, go stick it in the freezer.
If you want to just be done with it, you can be; or, if you’re interested in making life a lot easier for yourself in the mornings, you can go a step further!
Don’t let the sausage freeze all the way – take it out after about an hour. Unroll the saran wrap and slice that sausage into individual patty sizes! Lay those out on a cookie sheet and toss back into the freezer.
After they’ve frozen completely, toss them into a Ziploc bag, label and date them, and throw ’em back into the freezer. From now on, you can grab however many patties you need for however many people you’re feeding first thing in the morning, quick thaw them, and have breakfast in no time – without trying to hack through a frozen or semi-frozen log of sausage meat when you’re still foggy brained from sleep!
I was about to say that I like to “KISS” – Keep it Simple, Sweetie! but the truth is, I often make things a little more complicated than they need to be. Usually, though, what I’m doing is making it harder right now so that it will be simple and easy when I really, really need things to be simple and easy!
Like first thing in the morning. Have I mentioned I’m not exactly a morning person?
This is a very easy way to save a ton of money on your breakfast budget, and get a far healthier, less “crappy” product into your kiddo’s bellies to boot.
My next step is to learn how to make link sausages!!
HOMEMADE BREAKFAST SAUSAGE PATTIES
– Spice Mix (see below for ours)
– 1 pound of ground pork (thawed)
- Mix your spices and your ground pork in a bowl until well blended.
- Lay out a sheet of saran wrap. Plop the sausage meat on the saran wrap in a rough roll shape.
- Using the saran wrap and your fingers (or the flat edge of a cookie sheet) form the roll.
- Twist the ends of the saran wrap until the meat has turned into a nice, thick, neat roll of sausage heaven.
- Freeze for later use.
- OR you can freeze for an hour, remove from the saran wrap and slice into individual patties.
- Lay those on a cookie sheet and freeze completely. Once frozen, toss into a Ziploc bag for future use.
- Enjoy healthy(-er), cheaper breakfast sausage that tastes fantastic!
CRADLE ROCKING MAMA’S SAUSAGE SPICE MIX
– 8 or 9 tsp. dried sage
– 7 or 8 tsp. salt
– 4 tsp. black pepper
– 4 T. brown sugar*
– 1/2 to 1 tsp. ground cloves
– dash of some pepper: paprika, chili powder, cayenne
- Measure out your spices.
- Dump them in a bowl.
- Whisk them together.
- Store in a labeled container.
- Use 4 tsp. of the mix per pound of meat.
Do you make your own sausage? What seasoning blends do you use?