Mexico livens up these delicate turkey or chicken sausages.
Hot chilies and fragrant cilantro give a Mexican slant to these delicate white sausages made of chicken or turkey. You need a food processor to prepare the sausage mixture and two pairs of hands to squeeze it from a pastry bag into casings. However, the procedure goes quickly, and the sausages can be served freshly made or stored and reheated when you like.
Jalapeno Chicken Sausages
1/2 pound pork fat
3 medium-size onions, chopped
3/4 cup fine dry bread crumbs
1/2 cup milk
4 to 6 canned whole jalapeno chilies
6 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 cups lightly packed fresh cilantro (coriander)
2 pounds boned and skinned chicken (dark and light meat) or turkey breast, cut into small pieces (about 3 1/2 cups)
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 egg whites
1/2 cup whipping cream
Sausage casings (following)
Butter or margarine (optional)
Whirl fat in a food processor until finely chopped. Put half the fat in a 10- to 12-inch frying pan and cook, stirring, over medium-high heat, until it begins to melt and lightly brown. Add onion and stir often until it turns a light gold, about 20 minutes.
Add to food processor the remaining fat, bread crumbs, milk, chilies, garlic, cilantro, and onion with drippings. Whirl until pureed. Scrape out into a bowl.
In the processor, puree chicken with salt, eggs, egg whites, and cream (you may have to process in 2 batches). Stir into bread crumb mixture and mix thoroughly.
Fit a pastry bag (best if plastic lined) with a plain large metal tip with at least 1/2-inch opening. Fill bag 2/3 full with chicken puree. Thread casing onto a narrow plastic handle, such as one on a rubber spatula. Insert handle into the pastry tip and push the casing onto the tip; let 3 or 4 inches of the casing extend from the tip. Twist the bag with even pressure to force mixture through tip into casing; you'll need 2 pairs of hands--one to squeeze out sausage, the other to form the links.
At 6-inch intervals, twist casing to make links. Also twist end to close. If air bubbles form, prick with a pin to deflate. If casing tears, force meat out with your fingers and tie off. Once a length of casing is filled, tie the end and retwist links to secure. Repeat until all mixture is used. In an 8- to 10-quart kettle on high heat, bring 5 quarts water to boiling. Turn off heat and at once add sausages. Cover and let stand until sausages feel firm and springy when pressed, 25 to 30 minutes. Drain and cut links apart.
Serve firmed sausages hot as is, or brown in butter: Melt enough butter in a frying pan to coat bottom. Add as many sausages as desired and cook on medium-low heat until browned, turning occasionally; high heat will make sausages burst.
Or let firmed sausages cool, then refrigerate up to 2 days; freeze to store longer (let thaw before heating). To reheat, brown in butter or cover with boiling water and let stand about 10 minutes. Makes about 20 links, about 3 1/2 pounds.
Sausage casings. Purchase 7 to 8 yards natural sausage casing, 1 1/4-inch diameter, from a meat market (you may need to order ahead). If casing is all one length, cut into 3 1/2- to 4-yard halves. Working with one piece (keep remaining casing in cool water), set casing in a colander and slip one end onto a faucet; hold in place as you run cool water through to rinse; repeat. Keep in cool water; to use, drain and squeeze gently.
Photo: Use chicken to make pale sausages. Cilantro, jalapeno chilies, onion, garlic add boldness; eggs, milk, bread crumbs lend moistness
Photo: With fingers, work casing from spatula handle over tip of pastry bag; handle keeps casing untangled and untwisted
Photo: Accompany butter-browned sausages with bulgur pilaf and orange salad
Photo: To fill casing takes two pairs of hands-- one to squeeze mixture from pastry bag, one to twist links as they're made
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|Date:||Aug 1, 1984|
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