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How to make home-made duck sausage

How to make home-made duck sausages. How to cook them using the sous-vide method, smoke them and preserve them.

For 1kg
750 g of lean duck meat
250g of duck fat
17g of salt
3 to 4 g of finely ground pepper
2 metres of pork intestine (Ref: epiboypm )

Delicious and very easy to make, these duck sausages can be eaten grilled or can be used as part of another dish such as cassoulet. You can also choose to sterilise them in jars, or keep them in jelly, smoke them and keep them vacuum sealed in a refrigerator or even freeze them.

Choose duck fat when possible. The exchange of flavours takes place through the fat and your sausages will be juicier if you use fatty meat. Once you have removed filled and aiguillettes, bone the duck and remove the skin. You should have at least 25% fat. If this is not the case, take a little from around the fillets or add some lard. Cut into large cubes, season and put through a meat grinder with a n° 8 plate. Mix carefully.

The casing
Count around two metres of casing per kilo of mix. De-salt, rinse and keep in warm water to keep the casing supple and easy to fill. If you have opened a new bag of casing, keep the rest in salt in its original packaging. It will keep for months in a cool place.

If you are using a stuffer, fill it with big handfuls of mix that you take straight from the mincemeat tray. By grabbing and throwing it in, you avoid making air bubbles. Place the casing over the funnel and tie a knot in the end. Push regularly holding the casing between your fingers. When all of the mix has been stuffed into the casing, cut it and tie a knot in the end. Pinch every 10 cm between your thumb and forefinger (duck sausage are traditionally quite short) and turn them first one way and then the other to make the sections. That´s it. Place your sausages on a rack in a cool place or on a draining tray to ensure that they are not in contact with any moisture they might shed.

This is not essential, but light smoking can highlight the flavours of the duck. Count around 20 minutes without letting the temperature rise too much inside the smokehouse.

As soon as they are drained or smoked, vacuum pack your sausages. If they are smoked, allow them to mature in the fridge for one day before cooking them. Once vacuum sealed, you have a number of choices available to you:
- Low temperature cooking > 90 minutes at 80°C. All that remains is to grill them in the pan for a couple of minutes before serving
- Freezing > Uncooked or cooked, you will not lose any texture or flavour.
- Cooking from frozen > Place the bags of sausages into the basin of your low temperature cooker while frozen. Once cooked, sear them on a grill and serve.

In traditional preserves
Sterilising your duck sausages is very simple. Pack them into a straight jar and place in the steriliser for 2 hours at boiling point. It is even better if you cover your sausages with jelly before sterilising them. You can also preserve them as a confit by covering the sausages with duck fat before sterilising them for 2 hours at 100°C.
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