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Krautwurst & Kielbasa
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Kevin P
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PostPosted: Mon May 07 12 9:05 pm    Post subject: Krautwurst & Kielbasa Reply with quote

I thought I'd try something different. I made a 2-gallon batch of homemade sauerkraut about a month ago and 30 days later, it's ready to eat. Good stuff! It goes great with all kinds of sausage. But I wanted to make sausage with it...


I came across this recipe for 'Krautwurst' on Len Poli's site and thought it sounded quite good.

So here goes...
To about 4 pounds of ground pork, I add these ingredients:


I had ten pounds of pork shoulder, so I ground up the whole thing. Medium blade...


To the 4-pounds of pork, I ground in the frozen bacon (sorry...blurry action shot)...


Next comes the sauerkraut...


To this, I added all the spices—all were finely-ground except for the caraway & mustard seeds. This all got nicely mixed and I then put it in the fridge until I was ready to stuff. No Cure used as these are 'fresh' sausages; i.e. no smoke.

With the other six pounds of ground pork, I made a traditional Polish kielbasa with garlic, salt, pepper, marjoram and cure#1. Using 38-40mm natural casings, I made two long ropes that barely fit my smoker & poacher. These are headed from my smoker...


I used my little 5-pound grizzly stuffer for all; Not as fast as the Kirby Cannon Stuffer, but it still does the job nicely.
The krautwurst all stuffed into 5-7" links...


These will go on a rack and rest overnight...


Take a peek at the kielbasa. After about 2 hours in, its getting some good color. using oak pellets on this smoke...


After two more hours, it was time to pull the kielbasa and plunge them into the poacher...


At 165° it shouldn't take long for the kielbasa to hit the 152° mark. They started the bath with an IT of 135°


20 minutes later, I pulled the kielbasa & plunged them into an ice bath. Bloom time now...


We decided to go ahead & have the krautwurst for dinner tonight. Sauteed gently in olive oil in butter...


Put together a nice cheesy potato casserole to accompany the wurst...


First impressions of the krautwurst: a very juicy, flavorful sausage! Caraway a dominant flavor, but onion and garlic are there too! The kraut adds a nice, unexpected crunch. Nice texture, too. My wife says its 'like eating a reuben sandwich without the rye bread." Swiss cheese would go good with it. If you enjoy sauerkraut and want to try something out of the ordinary, you should try these! Dark beer with it a real plus!

Kevin

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Beertooth
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PostPosted: Tue May 08 12 1:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hell yeah Kevin. Those look good!

I need to make up another batch. Smile
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PostPosted: Tue May 08 12 1:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great job Kevin.
Now if I can just figure out how to make kraut. Embarassed
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Kevin P
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PostPosted: Tue May 08 12 2:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jarhead wrote:
Now if I can just figure out how to make kraut. Embarassed
Really all you need is cabbage, salt & time. Lactic acid fermentation is easy, good for you, tastes great—one just needs to control a few variables. Wink

Kevin
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patruns
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PostPosted: Tue May 08 12 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice Kevin! And I think your wife is on to something. Just add some swiss and thousand island dressing to the mix next time. Razz
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Griffin
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PostPosted: Wed May 09 12 2:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That looks amazing!! There is starting to be way too much food on my to-do list and not enough time.

So the kraut is just cabbage and salt? No liquid? Do you ferment it in a sealed container? Would love more details on that.
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patruns
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PostPosted: Wed May 09 12 4:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://boingboing.net/2009/01/12/making-sauerkraut-is.html

If you are making whole heads of cabbage (great for stuffed cabbage) you need to add water since you cannot effectively cover the cabbage in salt.
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Kevin P
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PostPosted: Wed May 09 12 4:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Griffin wrote:
So the kraut is just cabbage and salt? No liquid? Do you ferment it in a sealed container? Would love more details on that.

Grated, sliced or shredded cabbage, mixed well with kosher salt (2.5% of the total cabbage weight), pressed down into a container or crock. Brine develops as salt pulls the moisture out of the cabbage, so no additional water should be needed. Keep pressing down until the brine covers the cabbage. Weight it down with stone, wood block, ziplock bag full of brine, whatever does the job. Ideal temps for storage, out of direct sunlight, are in the 66-72°f (19-22°c) and wait time is about 3 weeks. The key is keeping the cabbage submerged in the brine so no scum forms. Bacteria (the GOOD kind) converts present sugar to Lactic acid, which not only preserves the contents, but adds the sour 'tang.'

I used 1-gallon glass jars with an air-lock inserted into the lid (held in place by a rubber grommet). The air-lock lets the gasses release but keeps the oxygen/air out. Ideal for fermentation. Bubble should start forming within a day or so.
After 3 weeks, you've tangy sauerkraut that is tasty, full of probiotics, high in Vitamin c, etc.

Kevin

Just packed & ready to start...
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Kevin P
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PostPosted: Wed May 09 12 10:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I finally got around to trying the kielbasa.
Had it sliced, fried up & served with some cooked apples, hot German-style potato salad & some sauerkraut. Smile

Kielbasa turned out nice, juicy & garlicky, and the oak adds a 'mellower' smokey taste.
You know you have enough garlic in the kielbasa when you can smell it even before you open the fridge door.
Boys & wife said it tasted great, so that's half the battle won right there....

Kevin

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solaryellow
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PostPosted: Wed May 09 12 10:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That krautwurst of yours has me all hot and bothered Kevin. Nice job! Very Happy
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h4ppy-chris
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PostPosted: Wed May 09 12 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

some good stuff going on there Kevin nice one.
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PostPosted: Thu May 10 12 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kevin, although I don't comment much, I read every post you do with a note pad. Man, if that tastes half as good as it looks I would be one round Polack. Good job. I am building a new sausage stuffer that will be finished in a few weeks. Its a monstrosity.
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Kevin P
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PostPosted: Thu May 10 12 10:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Awning Guy wrote:
Kevin, although I don't comment much, I read every post you do with a note pad. Man, if that tastes half as good as it looks I would be one round Polack. Good job. I am building a new sausage stuffer that will be finished in a few weeks. Its a monstrosity.


Thanks, AG! If i didnt have a family of five to help consume all I make, I'd be putting the pounds pronto!

So......when do we get to see the pics of this Monster Stuffer?
Question Question Question

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PostPosted: Sat May 12 12 9:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I should be finished in a week or so. I have some of my students helping me. Mad Lets just say they move a little slow for me, but, were almost there.
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 03 12 7:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kevin,

Beautiful work all the way around. Thank you for posting!
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millstream
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 06 13 10:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I made some krautwurst yesterday and had a few problems. I followed this recipe, thinking it was Kevin's, but obviously it wasn't.


Ingredients

10 lbs. pork butt
3 Tbsp. canning salt
1 Tbsp sugar
2-3 Tbsp chopped garlic, (bottled works fine)
2 Tbsp dried marjoram
2-3 Tbsp course ground black pepper
2 2 lb packages saurkraut rinsed once and pressed dry
1 pint ice water (important to be ice water)

Needless to say, it doesn't have much flavor. Along with that, I think the kraut may have been tearing my casings. Never have I had so many blowout on a 10 pound batch. To further my problems, it was a wet, soupy mess. To look at it in the pan, it didn't look wet, but once I started pressing it through the stuffer. Sad I rinsed and pressed the kraut dry, just like it said to do. I still had juice coming out around the stuffing horn and out the vent on the top of the stuffer. I laid it on racks in the fridge and had to put trays underneath it because of the dripping. I'll bet that batch dripped 2 pints of liquid. Confused

So here is my question. The only thing I did different this time was I ground the pork and had to freeze it because things came up and I couldn't make the sausage immediately. It was frozen for 5 days and then I thawed it in the fridge. When I went to use it there were still ice crystals in it, not so much that it was frozen, but you could see and feel the ice. I'm kinda thinking when I mixed the pork with the other ingredients, the salts melted the ice and it drained out instead of being soaked up by the pork? Question

Thanks for the info!

Scott
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Kevin P
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07 13 12:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

millstream wrote:

So here is my question. The only thing I did different this time was I ground the pork and had to freeze it because things came up and I couldn't make the sausage immediately. It was frozen for 5 days and then I thawed it in the fridge. When I went to use it there were still ice crystals in it, not so much that it was frozen, but you could see and feel the ice. I'm kinda thinking when I mixed the pork with the other ingredients, the salts melted the ice and it drained out instead of being soaked up by the pork? Question

Thanks for the info!

Scott

Hey Scott,

I'm glad to see you took the 'krautwrust challenge' Very Happy but am sorry to hear the results were less than what you expected.
A couple of things to note:
The sauerkraut—I've noticed a significant variety in the amount if liquid content depending upon the manufacturer. Compared to the home-made variety (which tends to be crisper & retains less of the salty liquid), most packaged sauerkraut is overprocessed, soggy and fully of liquid. If I were to use canned/jar of kraut, I'd allow for at least an one or two overnighters in the fridge for 'drain time' in a colander. Because of the high salt content, kraut hangs onto moisture like nobody's business. Too much liquid will indeed produce a soupy sausage.
• Using Frozen meat—freezing breaks down the cellular structure of most meats and when thawed, produces not only the water but also excess cell moisture ('flavor') from the ruptured cells. Salting the meat increases the moisture release.

Personally, I prefer kosher salt vs canning salt. Both are pure, but I find the larger crystals of the kosher aren't as bitter or harsh as the canning salt on the tongue. Additionally, another reason I prefer to use weight ratios versus volume measurements as "3 Tbsp" of canning salt is MUCH more than "3 Tbsp" of kosher salt.

Kevin
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Canadian Bacon
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07 13 8:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very nice job on that Krautwurst and Kielbasa Kevin.....Is it my understanding that your Kielbasa was only 4 hours in the smoker than into 165 degree bath.Looks nice and plump and not dried out....something I have not been able to achieve.I think I need a lot less time in the smoker...pull them and give them a poach to keep them from drying out and keeping them plump.
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Kurt_W
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07 13 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

a good kraut recipie w/sausage is to...
melt a little butter...
add some sliced apples and onions....deglaze/slop on some white wine and add kraut,,, s&p, cook down to desired texture..
goot!
also
boiled taters (carrots, too) and buttered,
salted, peppered and cream/sour (or both) cheese, too.
das goot!
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Kevin P
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 07 13 10:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Canadian Bacon wrote:
Very nice job on that Krautwurst and Kielbasa Kevin.....Is it my understanding that your Kielbasa was only 4 hours in the smoker than into 165 degree bath.Looks nice and plump and not dried out....something I have not been able to achieve.I think I need a lot less time in the smoker...pull them and give them a poach to keep them from drying out and keeping them plump.

CB, let me check my notes on this job....from last May! Shocked
Actually I don't vary my procedure that often. I'll do 3-4 hours of moderately heavy smoke, with the smoker temps going from 130° to about 160°F before pulling the load & moving them to the 165°F poacher. In most cases, with average diameter links (28-32mm), the internal temp of the links is about 130°-ish right out of the smoker, so they'll hit 152-154°F in the poacher in about 30 minutes. Longer for bigger links & chubs, but not nearly as long as finishing them in the smoker.

I suppose how long you leave them in the smoker depends on how dry or moist you want the final product to be. Some like kielbasa nearly as dry as a meat stick; other want em a bit juicier. I tend to want them on the juicy side as they'll get re-heated in a pan or grill & I dont want the links to turn into polish jerky! Very Happy

Kevin
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