Mostly about food, this blog is just a place for me to throw things that are of interest to me. I appreciate you taking the time to stop by an look around. This represents just some of the stops on the various pathways that this amateur home cook finds himself.

You may find that these foods tend toward protein and away from carbohydrates - this is due to diabetic issues, so I try to only sparingly use carbs, and good ones at that. Of course, sometimes I forget....

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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Snack Sticks

Another experience in the sausage world - snack sticks. I'm going to spare everyone the tedious meat preparation, seasoning and grinding - that pretty much is the same for most types of links.

I rounded up a nice fresh pork butt, prepared a good seasoning mix, and loosened up the casings. Since I don't have a stuffer, and I was only making 5 lbs. of sticks, I re-cleaned and prepared the Jerky Cannon. For those of you unfamiliar with such a thing, it is like a giant, food-safe caulking gun with interchangeable ends. Here's a picture of it next to dozen eggs, to give you the idea of the size of the thing:
Usually it is made for forming jerky, but with a sausage tube it works great for filling snack sticks. Here is the stuffed casing, freshly made:
After running down the length of the casings to even out any over- or under- filled sections, I loaded it all up on a tray for an overnight rest in the fridge:
Once out of the fridge the next day, it had firmed up quite a bit. I then proceeded to cut it all into sticks, getting ready for cooking:
Here they are, after getting to 154 degrees internally. I then gave them a shower to cool them down quickly, and let them sit out for a couple of hours to reach equilibrium:
And finally, it's time to enjoy the rewards of all this activity - eats! These are mighty tasty, but I think the next batch will benefit from the addition of a bit more garlic and red pepper flakes. After all, who wants dull snack stix?

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