Homemade deer sausage is a must have item for the guys in our family. Hubby is a hunter, so are many of the other men in my family. They process their own deer when they get them which allows them to save money, get exactly the cuts they want and I think they enjoy the whole process. Out of the group that hunts, Hubby is in charge of making homemade deer jerky and homemade deer sausage. He recently made the first batch of deer sausage for the season using the kit that Hi Mountain sent us to try out. Thanks Hi Mountain! Hubby has used their other products over the years and was happy to try this version.
There are some tools you will need to make sausage at home. For this batch Hubby used the Hi Mountain Home Sausage Making Kit Salami which contains all of the seasonings, cure, and casings you will need. You also need kitchen string to tie up the sausage sticks, a kitchen scale, and a meat grinder with stuffer attachment. Hubby uses Lem products for a lot of the tools for making the deer sausage as well as when they process the deer.
The Hi Mountain kit makes quite a bit of sausage and Hubby was making a big batch. Before he started he figured out the ratio of ground deer meat and ground pork to combine. He ads the ground pork because venison (deer) is very lean. Some people add just pork fat, but we like the ground pork. Ask your butcher to grind up a cut of pork for you even – that’s what I did.
Hubby thawed out all of the packages of ground deer that he needed. They package them in these little bags in one pound portions when they process the deer. This makes it easy to thaw out what we need for cooking throughout the year.
The kitchen scale is needed to make sure you have the right amounts of pork and deer. The Hi Mountain kit includes a chart of the ratios you need. Hubby found it a tad confusing, but he figured it out.
Measure all of the seasonings and cures and mix them in a bowl on their own. That way you can combine these all well before you mix into the meat. You need a large bowl to mix up the ground meats and seasonings then. Hubby actually had to do this in a couple of batches because we did not have a large enough bowl here at our house. The big containers they use are up at the lake house – we now know to either get one for here at home or bring one home from the lake when sausage making is going to happen.
All the guys like the plain sausage, but then they tasted some with cheese in it and they were hooked. You need a high temperature cheese to mix into the sausage. Hubby orders this online and it is the right kind of cheese and already in small pieces.
After you have everything mixed together take a small amount of the mixture and fry up a couple of test patties. This is to test your seasoning and make sure it is what you want. If you need to add or adjust you can do it before you stuff the casings. Once the sausage is in the casings there is really no turning back.
So this is the important tool to have. You put the meat in the top and crank the handle and hold the casing, oh don’t forget to soak the casing in water first, and the meat is forced into the casing. Ours is a manual but Hubby is thinking he needs an automatic one with a motor. Hubby, myself, and even T took turns cranking to get all the sausages done because it does wear out your arm pretty quickly.
Even though the picture above shows Hubby doing this all himself we actually found it is more a two person job. You kind of need two hands just to hold the casing onto the tip while it is being filled to maintain pressure and make sure it is even. Then when it is filled, take it off and twist the end and have the other person tie it shut with a piece of kitchen string.
These are the raw sausage sticks. At this point you need to let them cure in the fridge for about a day to let all of the flavors meld together. Then you smoke the sticks to cook the meat. Smoking is essential. You can use different flavored woods even to add another layer of flavor to your smoked sausage. Hubby used apple wood with this but hickory is another popular variety.
And here you have it! Your very own homemade deer sausage! Some people call it summer sausage, some call it smoked sausage, our family just calls it deer sausage. This is highly sought after by friends and family too. They gobble it up as soon as anyone sets out a platter of it and they really love if they are lucky enough to be gifted a stick of their own! People have asked Hubby to make more and they would buy it even but he doesn’t do that.
The Hi Mountain Salami Sausage kit provided a great flavor to the deer sausage. It definitely had spice to it, but even my dad, who doesn’t like too spicy, thought this was just right. The addition of the cheese really balances things out as well. Hubby will be getting more of the Hi Mountain kits for the next batch of deer sausage coming up in a few weeks.
It is a lengthy process to make homemade deer sausage but Hubby really enjoys the process and the finished product. He takes a lot of pride that he made this himself.
Have you ever made homemade deer sausage or any other type of sausage?