Smoked Venison Andouille Sausage
With the pork back from the butcher and deer season almost over O Wise One got his last doe of the season for making sausage for the year. Other than the loin everything was ground for making sausage.
We are very fortunate to have our own grinder (both electric and non electric) to process and grind our own meats and sausages.
We like to grind our sausage with the 5/16 disc for the grinder. Once the venison is ground it is weighed then we then grind the pork fat and trimmings. It is recommended to add 20% pork fat but we add about 30. If you add no pork fat because venison is so lean it will make your sausage dry and it will not hold together as well.
We like to put spice mix in dry and add 1 oz water per pound while mixing. The amount of seasoning varies per kind of sausage you are making and the back of the package will give you guidelines. We have used the LEM brand sausage seasoning for years and like the flavors. We order them online you will notice that our mixer, sausage stuffer and casings all come from there. Through the years they have proven a reliable source for all our meat processing needs and we keep returning every year a loyal customer.
Then the ground venison and ground pork seasonings are added to the mixer and we add an ounce of water for every pound of meat. Now turn the handle to combine and reverse the mixer occasionally to mix well.
Once it is mixed and before you remove it from the mixer, take out a small amount and make a small patty and fry on the stove quick to taste. Now is the time to add more seasoning if your sausage needs it. In our Italian sausage we actually like to add more granulated garlic, rosemary, sugar and basil at this stage.
For the next step we soak our casings for about half an hour or until soft in warm water. Hog casings are usually used for the larger sausages and sheep casing for the smaller links such as breakfast links and snack sticks.
Once the casing are soft they are threaded on the stuffing tube. Before the casings are put on one tip is to go ahead and fill your stuffer with meat and push to bring meat all the way to the end of the tube. This keeps the air from filling up your casings.
Tie end of casing to get started, then slowly push down on handle to force meat into the casing. Once the link is the size you want then twist . Twist first link to the right and second link to the left or they come undone. Continue alternating down the line. If you get a blowout then just pull a little extra casing out and twist and then start a new one. You can always take that link out at the end and add back to stuffer.
Once a whole section is done then take a pair of scissors and cut between them and the casings should remain in place.
From there they go into the smoker at 170 for about 2 1/2 hours to smoke but not cook through.
Smoked Venison Bratwurst
With plenty of homemade sauerkraut to accompany that bratwurst in the pantry.
Venison Breakfast Links
Venison Snack Sticks are cooked on a cookie sheet at 180 degrees for about 4 hours or until an internal temperature of 165.
Note ** you may have to pour grease off of these snack sticks as it cooks out of the sticks occasionally.
Venison Snack Sticks bagged for freezer
Smoked fully cooked Cajun Andouille Sausage ( I use to make my gumbo)
At the end of the day we added to the freezer:
32 links or 8 bags Smoked Bratwurst
26 links or 13 bags Sweet Italian Sausage
30 links or 15 bags Smoked Cajun Andouille
49 links or 8 bags Small Breakfast Sausage Links
42 sticks or 5 bags Venison Snack Sticks
Once everything is cooled it is frozen and then bagged into vacuum bags, labeled and returned to the freezer.
The Bratwurst will be served with sauerkraut or used for sandwiches. The sweet Italian sausages will be used to add to my spaghetti and lasagna dishes. The Cajun Andouille is a spicy sausage used for seasoning my gumbo and jambalaya. The Breakfast sausage will accompany those farm fresh eggs and buttermilk biscuits. And the snack sticks are Baby O's FAVORITE!!
In the end we got tired and froze up 8 pounds of ground venison that we hope to defrost at a later date and make into polish sausage. Once the sausage are all made the remainder of the pig fat and trimmings will be rendered for lard and cracklins. But alas Rome was not built in a day and I am getting old and my feet hurt from being on them all day. (Don't ya love it when I whine!)
Blessings from The Holler
The Canned Quilter