As you may be aware from my venison post last week I was recently in Adelaide to visit good pal J Grilla and his lovely wife the Notorious N.A.D.
He made a brilliant suggestion that during my stay we should attend a sausage making course run by local butchers Feast Fine Foods.
Feast seem to be the go-to for all things meat in Adelaide and they run a number of different classes such as the sausage making, ham and bacon making and butchery classes. I read a post about the ham & bacon class the other week and that sounds amazing too as I’ve only ever hot smoked bacon.
We were greeted with a complimentary glass of red from Bremerton Winery while we waited for other attendees and scoped out the set up and equipment. We were also joined by J Grilla’s mate Wolfgangnam Style who warned me not to make any German sausage jokes in my post – they’re the wurst.
The class kicks off with some basic knife skills from Robbie the butcher, with the take home message being that a sharp knife is a safer knife. As I have a sharpening stone at home it was great to learn how to use it properly!
We are then given the run down on sausage making, starting with the cuts of meat used. For this class we are just focusing on the king of meats: pork. For their pork sausages Feast use the pork shoulder as it is an affordable cut with a good ratio of protein/fat. To ensure you get a moist sausage (because everyone wants one of those) you want approximately 70/30 protein/fat ratio based on ‘visual lean’ – e.g. visual approximation.
The guys take us through the recipes for two of Feast’s pork sausages: Pork & Fennel and English Pork.
One thing I found quite interesting was the pork mince requires quite a lot of liquid to help with the binding process – approx 1.5L per 7kg or so. It seems like a lot but it all mixes in pretty quickly.
After all having a go at various stages of making Feast’s sausages we are then tasked to make our own.
There’s a table full of every ingredient you could possibly want and so, armed with two kilos of pork mince, we set off to choose our flavours.
We are advised that it’s best to keep it simple and pick only four or so ingredients, so I went with: worcestershire sauce, smoked paprika, mustard powder and garlic. I also added salt to taste and water to assist with binding.
You’re encouraged throughout the process to fry a little piece of mixture up to taste and one thing I quickly realised is salt = flavour. While it’s not great for us in large quantities, salt really does take it from bland pork mince to flavourful sausage.
The process of sausage stuffing is highly amusing and involves the opportunity for a great deal of innuendo and ‘that’s what she said’ jokes. The highlight was due to an air blockage in the machine I accidentally shot my sausage meat across the other side of the room (heyooooooo!).
After stuffing the sausages you then need to tie them – this is probably the area I struggled the most as I am extremely uncoordinated. There’s a rhythm to tying them, twist, pinch, loop, twist – wait, or was it twist, loop, pinch? (I said step pause turn pause pivot step step). I’m sure it makes more sense with practice.
The sausage class is fantastic value; at $140 you receive the 2kg of sausage you make, 1kg each of the two Feast flavours made and a $25 voucher to use at Feast.
I was concerned that my sausage would be stuck in Adelaide (lol) but after reviewing the state quarantine laws and figuring it was okay to bring them, we froze them and I smuggled them back in my hand luggage (Gusface Grillah: Sausage Smuggler).
I was pretty happy with how the sausages turned out, especially for a first attempt. I’m keen to make more although I think I may need to add a sausage stuffer to my gadget arsenal first.
If you live in Adelaide or you’re visiting and at a loose end I highly encourage you to check out the course there’s more info on their website. The ham and bacon one looks great as well! I wish we had Feast in Perth.