Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Make Ahead Recipe: Chorizo Beef Sausage

Art is a lie that makes us realize truth. – Pablo Picasso

The recipe makes more than this amount... Whenever you make sausage always
be sure to fry a small bit to test the spices. I learned this trick from Julia Child.
Since chorizo is Spanish, I thought I would start with a quote from one of the most famous Spaniards the world has ever known. I suppose my variation of this amazing sausage is a bit of a "lie" but I wouldn't go as far as to call it "art."

This is the spice for 2 lbs of meat. It looks like a lot, but it's not.
Why is it a "lie"? Chorizo is, very strictly speaking, a hot-spiced pork sausage. Although other meats “can” be used (even venison), purists will fight to the death to defend that it’s only pork.

I tend to agree with them, but I’m so sick of pork lately. I try to buy what’s on sale at the grocery, to pinch a penny, and it seems there’s been nothing but a steady stream of pork sales lately.

But, lo and behold, today I found ground beef at a local grocery on sale at half price. Half price! How can one pass it up? Honestly…

Originally from the Iberian peninsula (Spain and Portugal) Chorizo is a sausage that is made in two styles. One is fresh, the other is preserved. Preserving itself takes several forms, most commonly fermenting, curing or smoking.

Chorizo derives its distinctive red colour from an abundance of hot paprika (dried chilli peppers). From there the mixture is a bit of a craps shoot. Every region has its own take on this popular and useful meat mixture.

Before mixing.
In fact this sausage has made its way around the world. Besides Spain and Portugal, there are variations common in Mexico, South America, India and even the Philippines.

Of course there are other beef chorizo recipes around besides mine. I don’t know what made me think to try my hand at it except for the sale... Since I don’t have a sausage stuffer (yet) my sausage is bulk, but that’s OK. I’ll find plenty of ways to use this delicious concoction.

The heat can be increased or decreased at your personal whim. You really should always cook a little of any meat mixture before saying it’s correct. That’s the stage you can fiddle with the spices to get it just right, and in the process end up with a version that is completely your own.

I hope you enjoy this recipe. As you can imagine, stay tuned over the next week for a recipe or two using this spicy, tasty meat. After all I do now have 2 lbs of meat!

NOTE: By my standards this makes a fairly mild chorizo, so if you like spicy, make sure your paprika is HOT and perhaps increase the cayenne.

After mixing.
Chorizo Beef Sausage
2 lb medium ground beef (or use the traditional pork)
1 tbsp minced garlic
1/3 cup red wine
1 tbsp hot Spanish paprika
3 tsp cayenne (depending on the heat in your paprika)
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp salt
1 tsp cracked black pepper
1 tsp liquid smoke

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well with your hands. Take a small piece and fry it to test the spices. Adjust any that you need.

Once satisfied with the taste use loose if desired or stuff into casings. Although able to be used right away, it’s best to let the spices in the meat “bloom” overnight in the refrigerator.

If you wish you can cure or smoke the cased sausages. Look for recipes on how to do so using Google.

This sausage can be frozen very easily as well. 


If you like this post retweet it using the link at top right, or share using any of the links below.
Questions? Comments? Derogatory remarks?

No comments:

Post a Comment