Pheasant Sausage

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by nicko, Nov 25, 2013.

  1. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    So this past Saturday I did this:




    Myself and my cousin Tom went hunting on Saturday with two excellent field dogs and bagged 9 birds. On Sunday I broke the birds down and made stock from the bones and made fresh pheasant sausage from the meat. I added chopped fresh cranberries and dried apricots with ground clove, ginger, and cinnamon and I have to say they turned out incredibly well. When I fried off the first patty I knew I had a winner. Even my wife said they were the best sausages she has ever tried. And yes, I know she is biased but she is also very honest with me. They really were that good. 

    I used a ratio of 4# of meat to 1.5 pounds of pork fat.

     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2013
    abefroman likes this.
  2. colleens

    colleens

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    This sausage tastes like Christmas!  It is sooo good. I would not have guessed it was pheasant meat; it did not taste game-y at all. In fact this was the best sausage I have ever had.  I bet it made a difference having the pheasant meat so fresh. 
     
  3. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

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    Nicko, the sausage looks wonderful, with your wife liking them so much, they won't last long. I was going to make some Sausage out of some young Roosters I processed a few weeks ago. I have seen that they use oilve oil for the fat, have you ever tried that method ????? ...............take care................Bill
     
  4. ordo

    ordo

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    Gorgeous.
     
  5. kaiquekuisine

    kaiquekuisine

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    This only reminds me , that i really have to get some equipment to start making sausages. 

    Charcuterie and butchering is such a lost art that i really want to get into it , especially with my father and other relatives breaking down whole pigs since they were teens :( 
     
  6. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    @ChefBillyB  You know hunting for pheasants yearly I often find it challenging how to prepare them. They are such a lean bird and the legs have those splintery bones. I have smoked them, made stew, pan fried them but this is by far the best preparation I think. The pheasants are such a lean bird that adding in some pork fat really helps the meat to stay tender and juicy. Throwing in some cranberries and apricots really brought about a tart and sweet flavor to the meet along with the spices.

    The olive sounds really interesting I am guessing that is more for an emulsified sausage but I am uncertain I have never tried it. Let me know if you try it and post some photos here.

    One last quirky thing, these sausages were the prettiest sausages I have ever made. Not only were they nice and pink but they had the flecks of the cranberries and apricots and they just looked like Christmas time. Hopefully I can repeat this. 

    Thanks for all the kind comments.
     
  7. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

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    Nicko, That is really cool that you found a good use for such a lean bird. If you think about the whole process, The hunter goes out to get the meat for the days meal, he then cleans and preps the meat for sausage. I figure you did everything but jump on your horse and ride home. The olive oil was used in the chicken to keep it an all chicken sausage and not adding another animal fat. I for one like the way the fat mixes with the spices for a wonderful flavor. The pig we processed on my post was fat, over 400 lbs we fed her Corn from our field and all the restaurant scraps. With all that fat, the bacon wasn't much to brag about. I plan on using the cherry wood smoked pork belly in sausage when I need a fat to be added, maybe even for that Rooster I was talking about,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,take care.............you should be real proud of that sausage......................Bill
     
  8. everydaygourmet

    everydaygourmet

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    Nicko,

    they look great! Never used (or thought of using for that matter) pheasant for sausage, duck and goose yes. 

    Had pheasant confit though, you may want to try that for your pheasant next time, pretty tasty stuff.

    Best,

    EDG
     
  9. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    @EverydayGourmet  That is another good idea a confit but I am assuming you used a different fat (olive oil, butter) to confit the pheasant? I actually think a rillette would be very nice, similar to a confit.

    @ChefBillyB  Any idea on how to remove the shot from the bird. Did my best to remove as much of it as possible but I am sure I missed some.

    One mistake I would call out is if you notice my links are not all consistent sizes. I knew to cut a piece of string for measuring but just decided to wing it and that is why some are longer than others.
     
  10. everydaygourmet

    everydaygourmet

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    @Nicko, yes, have used chicken, goose or duck fat for lean game bird confit, and yes love rillettes when we confit, you know as a by product.(lol)

    Don't really care for olive oil to confit, imo & e can take away from the flavor. Have you tried grape-seed oil?, find it pretty neutral. 

    Use chicken rillettes in our chicken sausage, meatballs, burgers and loaf as a secret ingredient, same protein and flavor, can control the fat content as well, don't tell anyone!

    Cheers!

    EDG
     
  11. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

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    Nicko, Let me know if the 1.5 lbs of pork fat you used in the sausage was the right amount, or you could have used less. I'm going to make Rooster sausage using the smoked pork belly, sun dried tomatoes and whatever other seasonings I come up with. I guess what I'm asking is, could you have used less in your opinion ??? I figure I will have some oil from the Sun dried tomatoes to add to this......thx............................Bill
     
  12. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    @ChefBillyB  It did not seem to be greasy at all. In fact I think because pheasant is so lean it really helped. I used Brian Polcyn's book  

    In it for a turkey sausage with cherries they recommend 3.5# of meat to 1.5#'s of fat, so a 3-1 ratio. I used this as a guide and actually had a bit more than 4# of meat. It was a bit of a gamble but have worked with pheasants for so long they are just so lean that I felt the fat would not be an issue. In this case it was not I was spot on and very happy with the results. If you wanted to Bill you could easily drop down the fat to 1# and I don't think you would suffer too much.

    I welcome constructive criticism so if you think it was too much fat let me know. What ratio are you planning on for the rooster? There is a recipe in Polcyn's book for chicken with sun dried tomatoes which would probably give you a good ratio.

    Nicko
     
  13. cheflayne

    cheflayne

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    Not trying to hijack the thread but when I saw the name Brian Polcyn i had to jump in. Here is a guy that is a chef's chef and yet labors in relative obscurity. For every Guy Fieri or Bobby Flay, chefs on the Food Network, who bath in the public adoration and spotlight, there are many more like Chef Polcyn who go quietly about their craft and still remain virtually invisible to Joe public despite the high level of their skills. A tip of the toque to Chef Polcyn.
     
  14. kaiquekuisine

    kaiquekuisine

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  15. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    Yes lets stick to the regularly scheduled programming. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/lol.gif
     
  16. chefbillyb

    chefbillyb

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    In it for a turkey sausage with cherries they recommend 3.5# of meat to 1.5#'s of fat, so a 3-1 ratio. I used this as a guide and actually had a bit more than 4# of meat. It was a bit of a gamble but have worked with pheasants for so long they are just so lean that I felt the fat would not be an issue. In this case it was not I was spot on and very happy with the results. If you wanted to Bill you could easily drop down the fat to 1# and I don't think you would suffer too much.

    I welcome constructive criticism so if you think it was too much fat let me know. What ratio are you planning on for the rooster? There is a recipe in Polcyn's book for chicken with sun dried tomatoes which would probably give you a good ratio.

    Nicko

    Nicko, I see in the Chicken & Sun dried tomato and Basil sausage recipe they use 1/4 cup of EVOO, 1/4 cup of Red wine vin, 1/4 dry red wine along with a 3-1 ratio of meat to fat. One of the biggest complaints in Chicken sausage is " NOT" getting enough fat in the mixture. I wanted to know if you felt the 3-1 ratio was a good mix with yours, because I figure it will also do fine with the Rooster sausage. I'm going to try the smoked pork belly for the fat, I'll let you know how it works out..............Bill
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2013
  17. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    Um, the "mathematician" in me made me type.

    3.5 lbs to 1.5 lbs is a 2.33:1 ratio, not 3:1.

    To maintain a 3:1 ratio for 3.5 lbs of meat requires 1.167 lbs of fat.

    Another consideration is the amount of fat contained in the "meat" in question. I'm fairly certain that pheasant will require more added fat than, say, pork shoulder or even chicken.
     
  18. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    If you're at Facebook, checkout a group called The Salt Cured Pig.  Those dudes rock and roll with charcuterie and fermented meats. 
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2013
  19. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

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    And Nicko, although I have yet to make sausage of any kind, your stuff looks GREAT!

    May I also mention a generalization I learned from who I know not, but sausage can be made like pate, the same ratio of lean to fat but seasoned and presented differently.  /img/vbsmilies/smilies/smoking.gif

     And Nicko,  casings that were used for your sausage???
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2013
  20. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    I used Hog casings I got from the sausage maker. Good site that has ample supplies and good prices.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2013