On soup, and sausage

img_0330Sausage/leek soup with potatoes and carrots

I have lately been in the habit of making sausage.  It’s not hard to do, frankly, and like nearly everything else (breadmaking, soups, etc.) sausage is a vast and deep category, accepting thousands of variations.  Mostly, with all the meat (1/2 pig, 1/4 cow, 40 chickens) in the freezer, I am in serious need of uses for the less-than-prime pieces of it, and sausage is a great outlet for the tougher bits of flesh.  I find that getting out the hand grinder is a meditative task, and like the pasta roller or potato ricer or even the food mill, using the crank is so appealing that even the five year old here stays interested enough to complete the task.

But soups:  save the ubiquitous chicken soup, our weekly soup is usually a vegetarian affair.  It’s a habit, frankly, borne out of 16 years of vegetarianism:  I just don’t think to grab a hunk of flesh to sex up my soups, you know?  Entirely unnecessary.

Until, that is, you make about 3 lbs. of sausage that you can’t refreeze:  how about using some of it in soup?  Indeed.

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8 responses to “On soup, and sausage

  1. Bummer, now I can’t stop by for soup.

  2. Dern, that looks yummy! How about a recipe?

  3. yes, indeed, very handy. I love sausage with bean soup, but I also use them to flavor mostly vegetable soup: makes a little meat go a long way.

    I make rillettes with subprime pieces of pork too, no need to chop/grind at all.

    Now, would you tell me what’s the meat grinder you’ve got (brand, model), and if you bought it new, where you got it? I am currently chopping by hand (laborious) or using the food processor (wholly unsatisfactory for sausage) and have been pondering models – hand-powered preferred. Are you happy with yours? any reservations? Thank you.

    PS – my freezer has some beef left, 1/2 pig, a deer, 1/2 a goose and various poultry – all locally sourced. Not 40 chicken though! I am looking forward to when we get there.

    Sylvie

  4. “I just don’t think to grab a hunk of flesh to sex up my soups, you know?”

    Best line on a food blog in ages. Seriously.

  5. looks delicious – making me really hungry!

  6. Jules, hah, I didn’t really follow one, but Epicurious has one that’s fairly similar. (that’s one of the great things about soup: it’s pretty forgiving.)

    Oh Sylvie, rillettes!! (Ah, I need to do more experimenting.) You know, my meat grinder is a cheapo one, probably from the 40s or 50s; Tom bought it at a thrift store for something like $3 and it shows. It can get jammed up pretty easily with the stringy chicken I use; I usually just use the biggest blade to avoid that. I know there are models that work so much better than this one does, but I am never trying to convert a half of an animal to sausage at any one time so this little clamp-on one works fine for my needs. But yeah I can see how a food processor would completely screw things up!

    Hah, Kelly! (bows deeply)

    Amy, get souping!

  7. hey, I’ve got nothing against used and inexpensive, if they work! and I only do a few pounds at once too. Looks like you get value out of it, so that’s what matters.

    Thanks for the response.

    Sylvie

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