Sausage making

Get your sausages right.

Step 1

Take the freshest meat you can find for sausage-making as, the fresher it is, the longer the bloom on the sausages will last.

Craig prefers to use shoulders of pork as the cuts have less fat than other parts of the pig.

Even so they will need to be derinded. Use a professional derinder as it will save you time. Cutting the fat off by hand can be time consuming if you are planning to do a high volume trade in sausages.

Step 2 There may still be rind left so remove it with a knife along with any cartilage and gristle.

No matter how hard you try, the rest of the preparation will all be in vain if you cut corners here, says Craig.

Remember, a customer will vote with their purse and competition judges will mark you down if they find a trace of the rind in your sausages, he adds.

Step 3 Weigh the meat. If you have 20kg of pork you will have enough meat to make 30kg of pork sausages.

If you want to make a consistently high-quality product you must ensure that the ingredients weigh the same every single time, insists Craig.

If you are not aware that the law says that meat should account for 65% of pork sausages and 80% of the content of other sausages you should be, Craig says.

Step 4

Put the meat through a mincer twice.

Although once may be sufficient if you want a coarse grade of sausage, Craig prefers to put the pork meat through twice to give it the finer grade that the customers of Hinchcliffe's prefer and that has won it many competitions.

However, it is a matter of customer preference; they may want a coarser grade for a change.

Step 5

Spread the 20kg of minced pork meat in the mixer.

Add seasoning and protein and mix for an even distribution. Then add a third of 5kg of chilled water and mix. Add another third of the water and mix. Finally, add the remaining third of water and 2.5kg of rusks and mix gently until the rusks are folded in evenly.

(The water should be chilled to increase sausage shelf-life as each ti me the meat passes through machinery it will heat up).

Step 6

Place the mixture into a sausage filler.

Attach a spool of natural pork casing onto the sausage filler and start filling the skin with just the right amount of meat to an even tension.

Do not overfill the skins or they will burst. However, underfilling will make for unappealing-looking sausages, says Craig.

The result should be award-winning sausages and plenty of satisfied customers.

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