Saturday, December 31, 2011

Recipe: Turkey Sausage

Most turkeys taste better the day after; my mother's tasted better the day before. – Rita Rudner

Photo: ancapron, Flickr ccl
First, I have to categorically deny that is the case with my mother’s turkey. Her secret? A lowly meat thermometer.

Has anyone noticed the price of turkeys at one of our local groceries? $0.99 per pound.

Isn’t it funny that turkeys were $2.49 per pound just before Christmas and all last week. You can get a bird (now) to easily feed six for about $12.

You can purchase ground turkey or do your own with either
a grinder or food processor.
I think it’s time to invest in one. Roasting is only the most popular method for dealing with a turkey. If you cut it while still uncooked into individual pieces (breast, thighs, legs, etc.) you could have enough for a few meals. 

Then you also have the option of using the meat as you deem fit, as opposed to having leftover roast sitting in your refrigerator forever (or a 5-6 days maximum for health safety).

Have you ever thought about grinding up a breast to make turkey sausage. Even if you don’t have a grinder a passable job can be done with a food processor, and you can always use the sausage loose so there’s no need to stuff casings.

The upside of using turkey is that there’s no fat (or nearly no fat). You may want to include a little just so the meatballs don’t dry out. As we all know, there’s nothing worse than dry turkey!

I may serve meatballs (browned in a little oil) with pasta, tomato sauce and vegetables (carrot, celery, onion and garlic). Another option would be to make a turkey meatball soup with onion, carrot and green pepper.

You’ll have to come back to see which one won out!

Turkey Sausage
1 pound lean ground turkey
1/2 cup turkey fat (or pork fat)
1-1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
6 ground juniper berries
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

Grind the sausage meat and fat together. If using a food processor, cube the meat and pulse it until well “ground.” Add the spices and mix well. Let sit for 2-3 hours in the refrigerator before using so the flavours develop.

Use for meatballs, turkey burgers or any other use you can think of.


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