February Charcutepalooza – Bacon, Sausage and Potato Soup

Getting Ready for the Soup

Back from a great vacation in Mexico for a day and I have to make a recipe for the February Charcutepalooza challenge. No time to go grocery shopping and the deadline is tonight for the post. What can we make? Soup? Yes we can make soup. In fact, we have all the makings of a Tuscan Potato soup! Necessity is the mother of invention they say and that is never more true than in cooking at home sometimes.

All the Ingredients!

Bacon Sausage and Potato Soup

12 oz. Homemade Chorizo Sausage casings removed and chopped (see Sausage Party Post)
8 oz. Homemade Fresh Bacon chopped (see Charcutepalooza Challenge #2)
1 Medium White Onion diced
4 Cloves Garlic minced
3 Large Potatoes Cubed 1/2″x1/2″
1/2 cup dry white wine (we used an Orvieto)
4 cups chicken stock
3 cups milk
2 Bay Leaves
1 1/2 tsp. thyme
1 1/2 tsp. rosemary
1/2 tsp. cayenne
black pepper to taste
salt to taste

Heat a 4 quart pot on medium high heat. Add the sausage and saute until slightly browned. I used a mild chorizo sausage that I made and had in the freezer but an italian sausage or an andouille sausage would work well. Once brown remove from the pot and set aside.

Chorizo Sausage

Add the bacon and saute until crispy. Pancetta would be the first choice for this soup but since mine is not ready for 3 more days I used my fresh bacon. Once it is crispy remove from the pot and set aside.

Fresh Bacon

Reduce the heat to medium and add the onions and saute until they are tender and translucent about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for another minute.

Add the white wine and deglaze the pot. For those of you who may not know, this means that you want to use the liquid and a your spoon to get all of the brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. This is where a ton of flavour for the soup will come from.

Once you have deglazed the pot, then add the stock, milk, thyme, rosemary, cayenne and return the bacon and sausage to the pot. Bring the soup to a boil and add the potatoes. Simmer the soup until the potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve.

The Finished Product

The soup is a nice, rich winter meal with a little heat from both the chorizo and the cayenne. Eat with a fresh baguette and a glass of the white wine.


Sausage Party


15 Lbs Ground and 25 to Go

What better way to spend a Sunday than with friends drinking wine and making 40lbs. of sausage?

That’s what we recently did with 2 other couples at our house. We had been talking about it doing this for months and finally bit the bullet and made the plans.

Each couple were to bring the ingredients for a sausage with the plan being that we would all pitch in and then split the 3 different kinds amongst ourselves. We would provide the sausage casings.

We had to call around to local butcher shops to find natural pork casings but found them on the second try and ordered enough for 45lbs. of sausages. When we saw them measure out the casings we asked them to give us about 50% more. (It still wasn’t enough!)

On the Sunday, everyone arrived ready to do battle. We were making a Chorizo sausage, an Andouille sausage and an Assyrian lamb sausage. We were outfitted with one large hand crank meat grinder with a sausage stuffing attachment as well as a  meat grinder and sausage stuffing attachments for a Kitchen Aid mixer.

In head to head comparison we found the Kitchen Aid meat grinder worked faster and more easily than the old fashioned meat grinder but in the sausage stuffing old fashioned was way faster and easier. As I mentioned before we ended up being short about 10-15 feet of casing so made meatballs with the remainder.

This #@$% Thing Doesn't Work


The recipes:

 Chorizo Sausage (based on a recipe at http://thespicysausage.com/recipes/chorizo1.htm)

2.5 lbs coarse ground pork butt
2.5 lbs coarse ground chuck
1 cup cold white wine
3 Tbsp spanish paprika
2 Tbsp salt
3 Tbsp fresh minced garlic
2 Tbsp cayenne
1 Tbsp cumin
1 Tbsp dried oregano
1 Tbsp freshly ground black pepper

Combine all, mix well & stuff into hog casing
Andouille Sausage (based on a recipe at http://homecooking.about.com/library/archive/bllowfatsausage.htm)

2 lbs finely ground boneless, skinless turkey breast
2 lbs finely ground boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 lbs finely ground pork loin
2 Tbsp browning-and seasoning sauce
1 Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp pepper
1 Tbsp rubbed sage
1 Tbsp ground marjoram
1 Tbsp dried thyme
1 tsp ground bay leaves
2 Tbsp minced garlic
½ cup dry white wine

Combine all, mix well & stuff into hog casing

Assyrian Lamb Sausage

5 lbs coarsely ground lamb shoulder
½ cup pomegranate juice
3 Tbsp chopped fresh basil
1 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
2 Tbsp minced garlic
1 Tbsp salt
1 Tbsp ground black pepper

Combine all, mix well & stuff into hog casing