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Home Sausage Making: How-To Techniques for Making and Enjoying 100 Sausages at Home Paperback – December 7, 2003
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"Reavis shows readers in step-by-step illustrated fashion how to make a variety of classic sausages…a complete guide to sausage preservation along with care and storage advice for the individual varieties included." -Booklist
"The instructions for making the most of the sausage variations are surprisingly simple."
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Top Customer Reviews
Unfortunately, this is kind of where the good news ends. So far, I've found the recipes to be kind of wanting. They're clever, and it's a comprehensive selection of sausages, but all the ones I've made have been pretty weakly spiced. I'm not talking about them not being hot enough--I like spicy food, but I don't think everything needs to be spicy--I'm talking about not having sufficient quantities of spices. For example, the bratwurst I made from their recipe didn't taste much like anything except meat. This is a fairly subtle sausage at the best of times, but as recommended in the book it's flavorless.
I have consistently found that I need to greatly increase the amount of spices in the sausages beyond what the recipes call for to get a flavor that seems appropriate. I'm a serious and very experienced cook, so I don't think it's a problem on my end. But your mileage may vary.
With that said, though, I still can recommend the book as a good starter into the concepts and techniques of sausage making. Would I buy it again? Maybe not. Will I refer to it again now that I have it? Definitely--on the technical side, it won't steer you wrong, and it's very user-friendly.
Furthermore, the recipes utilizing sausage are unimpressive as well. Most cooks experienced enough to make fresh sausage probably don't need a recipe for a sausage omelette or sausage pizza.
Finally, and most importantly, the book misses some important techniques that are essential to proper sausage making. While they do make mention of freezing meats for 30 min. before stuffing, they don't sufficiently emphasize how essential it is to maintain near-freezing temperatures throghout the process until the casings or stuffed. Failure to do so will result in dry, crumbly sausages, something I learned the hard way. Additionally, there is no discussion of the "primary bind," an essential step in sausage making whereby the ground & spiced meat mixture is beaten (either by hand with a wooden spoon or with a paddle attachement in a stand mixer) for a couple of minutes before stuffing. This allows the meat to bind together, preventing a loose & crumbly sausage, yet this essential step is entirely absent from the book.
My recommendation would be to look at "Charcuterie" by Michael Ruhlman & Brian Polcyn. Not only does that book provide all the ins & outs of sausage making (plus the reasoning behind them) from award-winning professionals, the recipes are perfectly seasoned every time. The book has the added benefit of providing information on some more exotic things to do with meat as well, such as dry-curing hams, prosciutto, salami, etc.
Now, I read another book on exactly the same subject and I find an even better book that addresses all of the criticisms I had of the Aidells and Kelly book. Specifically, it makes liberal use of illustrations of both equipment and technique, with the added bonus of being very specific about health hazards and the means for avoiding them, by being clear about cooking, aging, and smoking temperatures. Thankfully, there is enough difference between the two books and they are both inexpensive enough to make it worth your while to own both. If you really need to limit yourself to one, the Aidells / Kelly book is better for the armchair sausage buff, who is more interested in things to do with sausage and with the scoop on what is in the sausage he buys at the deli, megamart, or specialty meat store. Peery / Reavis is better for people who are really interested in actually making sausage, based on the much better illustration of sausage making equipment and technique, and fewer recipes, compared to Aidells / Kelly on what to make with sausage.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This helped out tons while I was learning to make sausage over the winter. Remember the colder it is the better to make sausage, fat melts in the heat and your sausage making will... Read morePublished 7 days ago by Victoria S
Very good book. Well written and the descriptions if various sausage techniques are well handled. I read this and watched Alton Brown's Sausage Episode and felt pretty comfortable... Read morePublished 13 days ago by orgusa
I love this book!
I have made a few different sausage recipes from it. The books authors do a great job encouraging all readers to venture into the journey of sausage making. Read more
Great Book, after getting one with my sausage stuffer, ordered more for relatives.Published 1 month ago by Mudderpwee