Breakfast Sausage #1

For someone who basically refused the meal as a teenager, as an adult breakfast has captured a special place in my heart. Part of the reason for this must be my discovery that breakfast needn’t involve sickly sweet grains swimming in milk – I prefer butter and salt to jam and honey on the breakfast table. It might also have something to do with my only-three-years-ago decision to start eating eggs. Breakfast is the ovophobe’s worst enemy. But I don’t credit an adult love of omelets with my rediscovery of breakfast: that honor belongs to the breakfast sausage.

The only problem with breakfast sausage is finding a good one. Too often they have some funky off flavor, are too dry, or the texture is just off (we once had a package of links with the texture of hot dogs). Martha and I have made something of a quest of finding good breakfast sausages locally but so far haven’t found a keeper. But with my newfound sausage-making capabilities, a new possibility has opened up: I will make the perfect breakfast sausage.

I wish I could say this is the definitive recipe for breakfast sausage, the culmination of our quest. In truth its flavor was a little lacking. For one thing, the sausage was underseasoned – for once I needed a heavier hand with the salt. I also thought the fennel flavor should have been stronger and would have loved a little spice. Any maybe the garlic was a little strong (or, more likely, not strong enough). Let’s call Breakfast Sausage #1 a valuable learning experience that is hopefully a step toward the ideal sausage, be it Breakfast Sausage #2 or Breakfast Sausage #47.

Breakfast Sausage #1

  • 2.5# pork shoulder (boneless)
  • 92 g onion, minced
  • 19 g garlic, minced or pressed through a garlic press
  • 11 g fresh sage, minced
  • 6.5 g fennel fronds, minced
  • 12.7 g sea salt
  • 3 g black pepper, coarsely ground
  • Sausage casings

Cut the pork into ¾” cubes. Place on cookie sheet and freeze for 20 minutes, to firm the meat.

Spread onion, garlic, sage and fennel over meat chunks. Grind using coarse plate. Lightly toss ground meat mixture with salt and pepper to distribute evenly.

Stuff the sausage into casings (if you plan to case the whole recipe, you will need about 4′ of large casings). Leave enough room to twist smaller (3″) links. Twist, cook and serve.


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3 comments on “Breakfast Sausage #1”

  1. Linda 28 October, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    Did you try the breakfast sausages at Café Zinc when you were there? I was favorable impressed. The ones in your above photo resemble them.

  2. Antonia 7 July, 2012 at 9:39 am

    At last! A breakfast sausage that I can eat here! Omg, YAY. It looks really yummy, just like one my dad makes. Can’t wait to try it!