Recipe: Bratwurst

October is the perfect time for brats.
(Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times)

Total time: 45 minutes, plus chilling times

Servings: Makes about 3 pounds of sausage

Note: Adapted from recipes by Susan Mahnke Peery and Charles G. Reavis, as well as Bruce Aidells and Denis Kelly. This recipe requires a meat grinder and sausage stuffer. Casings should be properly flushed and softened before using; consult your butcher or the packaging.

1 1/2 pounds lean pork butt


1 pound boneless veal shoulder

1/2 pound pork back fat

1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper (medium grind)

2 1/2 teaspoons kosher or coarse salt


1 teaspoon toasted and crushed caraway seed

1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1 teaspoon sugar

1/3 cup heavy cream

About 3 feet prepared hog casing

1. Cut the pork, veal and back fat into 1-inch cubes. Freeze the cubes in separate bowls for about 30 minutes to firm them up before grinding.

2. Grind the pork, veal and back fat separately through a meat grinder fitted with a three-eighths-inch grinding plate into a large bowl set over an ice bath.


3. Combine the meats and fat together with the pepper, salt, caraway seed, marjoram, allspice and sugar. Cover and freeze the mixture for 30 minutes. Remove and grind the mixture again using the finest grinding plate of the meat grinder. Add the heavy cream and mix well, using your hands.

4. Fry a small patty until done to check the flavor and seasoning (the sausage should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees). If necessary, adjust salt, pepper and other seasonings, then fry another small patty and check again.

5. Stuff the mixture into the prepared casing according to the manufacturer’s instructions for your sausage stuffer. Prick any air pockets with a pin and twist off into 4- to 5-inch lengths. Refrigerate for up to 2 days, or freeze up to 2 months.

Each 4-ounce serving: 282 calories; 22 grams protein; 1 gram carbohydrates; 0 fiber; 21 grams fat; 8 grams saturated fat; 101 mg. cholesterol; 302 mg. sodium.

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