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Fennel seed is one of the main ingredients in Italian sausage, and this recipe includes Asiago cheese for added flavor. Try making your own at home. You can use a food processor to chop up the pork. This sausage is just as good in patties as in casings.

Prep Time: 12 hours, 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 12 hours, 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 Boston pork butts, skinned, boned, and cut into small chunks (including fat), weighing 6 pounds after trimming
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 5 tablespoons minced broadleaf parsley
  • 1/2 cup grated Asiago cheese
  • 4 tablespoons crushed fennel seeds
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

Preparation:

Crisp fennel seeds in a pan in a preheated 325-degree F. oven for 10 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine pork, salt, pepper, red pepper, parsley, Asiago cheese, fennel seeds, and garlic. Thoroughly blend with your hands. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight for flavors to meld.

Put seasoned pork chunks through medium plate of a food chopper. Place in a large bowl and mix thoroughly to evenly distribute seasonings. Fry a sample patty in melted butter to test for proper seasoning.

All sausages can be prepared as patties (the easiest and many think the most flavorful method of preparation), or run through a sausage-stuffer into hog casings, then frozen. All food choppers or grinders come with sausage-stuffing instructions.

Yield: about 6 pounds

Source: The Meat and Potatoes Cookbook by Maria Luisa Scott & Jack Denton Scott (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
Reprinted with permission.

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