Smoked Polish Sausage

Smoked Polish Sausage

I've finally got my new smoker up and running - albeit only the hot-smoking side of it at present.

Monday saw and me off to Ashwood Smoking Chips in Kettering (01536 523220) to pick up supplies of wood for smoking. The people there are great - I got 15kg of Beech and 15kg of Oak for £13.60 and they gave me half a bag of cherry to try - as 15kg of cherry is nearly £35 this was a great gesture - thanks guys!.

To trial my smoker I decided to make a Polish Smoked Sausage recipe that I got from Sausagemaking.org forum member Wittdog.

I forgot to take photos of the sausage making process - I must remember to do it next time. However once made I put them into the smoker and used the cherrywood to smoke them.

We've tried them today - they taste great! My only complaint is that the smoking makes the skins a little tough and that they could do with even more smokiness.

Wittdog details the process of making them in four YouTube videos:

Well worth a look.

The unsmoked sausage



New Toy

Remote ThermometerI've got a new toy!

I've been building a more permanent smoker for some time now with the intention of being able to both hot and cold smoke.

I came across this smoker/barbeque temperature monitor online, ordered one via ebay, and it's duly arrived from the US.

The great thing about this thermometer is that it not only records the smoker temperature, it also monitors the internal temperature of the meat. Not only that, but it then sends the lot by wireless so you don't even have to go outside to know what's going on!


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Hugh's Chicken Run

Seems that the 'world and his blog' are writing about chickens this week. It's hard to avoid all the fall-out from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's programmes

Now, if you set yourself up as any form of champion you can expect a certain amount of criticism, whether it's from the National Farmers' Union about the term 'Battery Chickens' or Stonehead, asking whether 'Hugh has been naughty' as in 'economical with the truth'.

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Artichoke Soup

Jerusalem ArtichokesIt started last week when Dad asked me what root veg has a top like a sunflower – turns out, it's Jerusalem Artichoke.

Now, the only thing I know about this veg is its propensity to give one flatulence – that's the posh way of saying that it makes you fart!

Anyway, I asked my mate Bob about them on Friday and he confirmed that they have tops like a sunflower and, did I want some? I'm sure that if I'd asked about a veg that is only meant to grow on the higher peaks of The Andes, he'd have some growing in his garden!

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Salt (Corned) Beef

In this country we are used to corned beef out of a tin. The corned beef I am making is more like an unsmoked version of Pastrami. It gets its name from the 'corn'; grains of coarse salts used to cure it. Traditionally made with brisket it can also be made with other cuts – in this case a piece of topside weighing about 3lb.

The corned beef

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Happy New Year

A somewhat belated 'Happy New Year' to everyone.

I suppose I ought to be posting a review of the past year and my predictions for next but, to be honest, I can't be bothered and a) nobody's interested and b) predictions are like Jack Russells – they have tendencies to come back and bite you!

So what shall I write? If you blog you're more or less obliged to write something, at least occasionally – this blog's about local food so I suppose that had better feature somewhere.

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