Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby vagreys » Sat Feb 08, 2014 6:59 pm

This book has been announced for April release in the US, and May release in the UK. By buther Ryan Farr of 4505 Meats in San Francisco, it remains to be seen if the book can live up to its title.

http://www.amazon.com/Sausage-Making-Definitive-Guide-Recipes/dp/1452101787/ref=wl_mb_wl_huc_mrai_1_dp

http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=Sausage+making+the+definitive+guide&rh=n%3A266239%2Ck%3ASausage+making+the+definitive+guide
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby DanMcG » Sat Feb 08, 2014 8:46 pm

Thanks for the post Tom, can never have enough books. and if this is the definitive Guide I won't need another. :)
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby JerBear » Mon Oct 13, 2014 12:43 am

I noticed that there hasn't been an update to this post since the book's release so I'll do a very light book report. I like the quality of the book binding/paper choice, quality stuff. The photos of the sausage making process are good, a little on the dark side, almost have an Instagram-esque filter thing going on. I really liked the visual representation of the different casing sizes; sheep --> hog --> beef middles --> beef bung.

This book has a very unique perspective I haven't seen in other sausage books. Each section of recipes is based on the grind of the sausage; coarse, firm, soft and smooth and each section has a "Master Ratio" with measurements in both US weight/volume, grams and % of total. There's also a section for "Combination Sausage" which is pates and the like. Great step by step pictures for lining a pate mold as well as how to assemble a pate en croute. Also cool is a step by step suckling-pig galantine. Next to each recipe is a photo of the sausage cut into a cross section lengthwise, also cool. Last section is condiments, biscuits and buns. There was mention of a "special sauce" elsewhere in the book and I was disappointed that something would be noted by not included... what's the point of writing the book and sharing your recipes if you're aren't sharing all of 'em? (Just my .02)

Some of the sausages are what you might call standards or classics such as cotechino, chorizo, scrapple and marguez. He also goes off into left field a little (which I really like) such as a jerk doggy, guinea hen and kimchee and a foie gras boudin blanc.

Definitely a good read, fun, great pictures and lots of pictures. Overall I feel it's worth the $35 USD.
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby DiggingDogFarm » Mon Oct 13, 2014 3:49 am

Thanks Jered!!!!!



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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby vagreys » Mon Oct 13, 2014 11:59 pm

Thanks for the report! i guess I'll keep an eye out for it on the meat shelf at the bookstore.
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby This Little Piggy » Tue Jan 27, 2015 4:53 pm

Here's the review I posted on Amazon. My title was "far from a definitive guide."

If this book had simply been presented as an introduction to some of the sausages Ryan Farr has developed for his shop, 4505 Meats, and made it clear that he was making things easy by presenting a one-size-fits-all approach, I would probably have given it four stars. But it claims to be "THE definitive guide" to "sausage-making" in general and introduces his way of making sausages as the "master technique." That sets the bar a lot higher; and it fails to measure up to that standard. Hence three stars.

It stumbles, right out of the gate, by failing to understand what makes a sausage. The opening words of the first chapter declare in bold type: "Sausage is an emulsification of meat, fat, and liquid, and it's the relative proportion of these ingredients that determines the texture of the sausage. When protein (ground meat) and liquid are combined, the mixture forms a sticky paste, called farce, that can readily absorb fat."

Unfortunately, not one of these statements about the nature of the meat mixture in a sausage is accurate.

An emulsion is defined as a mixture of two immiscible liquids, one of which is dispersed in the other liquid as small droplets or globules. A sausage is not a mixture of liquids. Proteins in the meat (principally myosin) are soluble in a concentrated brine, and the goal in sausage-making is to release or introduce enough myosin to be able to bind to the fat globules and trap them in a protein web that will prevent them from coalescing as they melt. That's what makes a tasty, juicy sausage. The proteins may be dissolved in liquid, but since they are not themselves liquid it is more accurate to speak of forming a protein web or matrix, which sets into a gel when it's cooked, and not an emulsion - even for what are traditionally called "emulsified sausages".

This would be mere pedantic nit-picking if his misunderstanding of the nature of a sausage did not lead to poor technique and some bizarre recipes.

His "master technique" for making sausage says to continue mixing it until you have "a homogenous paste," as if you were beating or whipping it to make something like a mayonnaise. Such overmixing is entirely unnecessary, and for many types of sausage "a homogenous paste" is simply undesirable. Such overmixing can easily degrade your sausage, because, as he acknowledges, it "damages the cell structure of the meat so that it can no longer absorb the added liquid and fat." (27-8)

This is another misunderstanding. A proper protein matrix does not absorb fat; it coats it and traps it. The reason to avoid damaging the cell structure of the meat and fat (by overchurning it in the grinder, not cutting it cleanly, or by overmixing the farce) is simply that ruptured cells will leak their contents. Again, it is not an emulsion, where you are trying to maximize the amount of liquid that can be dispersed in or "absorbed" by another. You're simply trying to prevent the stuff you're putting in your sausage from leaking out.

His reason for overmixing is that "kneading helps release the protein in the meat." This is another misunderstanding. Myosin is released (or more precisely, solubilized) by salt, not by the mechanical action of mixing or kneading. Since he does not add salt to the meat until he is mixing, it has very little time to do its work (plus it is diluted by the other ingredients in the mix). As a result he has to overmix to try and extract enough myosin to bind the sausage mix together. In a number of his recipes, that's not enough, and he has to rely on additives, such as milk powder, in order to achieve a sufficient bind. Because the salt has had so little time to act, he has you refrigerate the mix for at least 6 hours or overnight before stuffing. If this does work to allow enough myosin to be extracted, you will now have another problem, as the mix can set up so firmly that it will be very difficult to force through the stuffer.

Better technique is to cube or coarse grind just the lean meat, salt it (using the entire amount called for by your recipe), vacuum seal it if you can, and let it sit in the refrigerator until you extract enough myosin (a few hours up to two days, depending on the meat and the degree of bind desired). Then you grind it to the desired fineness with the fat, mix it with the seasoning and liquid just enough to combine, and then stuff in casings.

His misunderstanding of what binds a sausage together and holds the fat in suspension results in some bizarre recipes. For his Cajun Boudin, he has you grind the meats into a bowl over a bowl filled with ice, apparently forgetting that the meats have just simmered for an hour and a half and so concerns about heating them up in the grinder are a little misplaced. Then he has you hold the farce in the refrigerator overnight, a step traditionally intended to extract the salt-soluble proteins from the meat and improve the bind. Except, in this case, the meats are cooked, which means that the proteins are denatured and no longer soluble. Instead, this sausage relies on the starch in the rice for the bind, and if you think about how hard rice sets up as it gets cold, you'll understand why it would be better to stuff the sausages warm and then refrigerate.

Finally, in his introduction to the chapter on "smooth sausages," he writes, "Temperature is extremely important when making a smooth sausage. Your farce must not ever get warmer than 40ºF/4ºC or the emulsion will break, just as when making a mayonnaise, and you'll end up with a sausage that has a grainy texture and a greasy mouthfeel." (112)

Again, this is quite inaccurate. When preparing a meat batter by chopping or grinding, the maximum desirable temperature is significantly higher than he says and depends on the meat: approximately 8ºC (46ºF) for poultry, 12ºC (53ºF) for pork, and 18ºC (64ºF) for beef.

The reason for these temperatures is not that "the emulsion will break" (which happens when you simply can't disperse any more of one liquid in another and it begins to separate out); instead, these temperatures are based on the melting point of the fat, for the simple reason that when fat melts the droplets run together or coalesce and quickly become larger than the soluble proteins can coat and trap.

All that said, many of the recipes in the book look quite tasty and I'm eager to try them. As long as you approach them with an understanding of all that's wrong with his technique, you should get good results.
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby kimgary » Tue Jan 27, 2015 5:53 pm

Many thanks for that.

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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby wheels » Wed Jan 28, 2015 12:31 am

Thanks TLP.

Phil :D :D :D :wink:
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby This Little Piggy » Wed Jan 28, 2015 6:34 pm

Glad to be back!
"Nothing exceeds like excess."

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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby wheels » Wed Jan 28, 2015 7:27 pm

...and most welcome back you are too.

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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby Goaty » Wed Jan 28, 2015 7:54 pm

This Little Piggy wrote:His misunderstanding of what binds a sausage together and holds the fat in suspension results in some bizarre recipes. For his Cajun Boudin, he has you grind the meats into a bowl over a bowl filled with ice, apparently forgetting that the meats have just simmered for an hour and a half and so concerns about heating them up in the grinder are a little misplaced.


I think this is a straight copy & paste job as it's the same for all the recipes in the book. It smacks of lazy editing.

Re: the "definitive" guide, I'd agree with you. He does the same in the companion book "Whole Beast Butchery" which completely ignores beef legs/ top bits, simply French trimming the shin to leave you with a 4' high "steamship roast" weighing roughly 50kg!

This Little Piggy wrote:All that said, many of the recipes in the book look quite tasty and I'm eager to try them. As long as you approach them with an understanding of all that's wrong with his technique, you should get good results.


I've done a number of them & they work pretty well.
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby quietwatersfarm » Thu Jan 29, 2015 2:39 pm

tell us what you really think Laurence! :)

I really like Ryan and a lot of his recipes.

I am also always disappointed when anything at all sets itself up as 'definitive', 'master' the xxxx bible' etc. Just make a book as best you can and hope it contributes to the common cause.

Will probably still get it as so many of Ryans sausages taste so good!
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby DiggingDogFarm » Fri Jan 30, 2015 12:13 am

quietwatersfarm wrote:I am also always disappointed when anything at all sets itself up as 'definitive', 'master' the xxxx bible' etc. Just make a book as best you can and hope it contributes to the common cause.



I wholeheartedly agree!
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby RodinBangkok » Fri Jan 30, 2015 11:10 am

This Little Piggy wrote:Here's the review I posted on Amazon. My title was "far from a definitive guide."


Thanks for taking the time to try and put things straight with yet another "Definitive" book.

Its very unfortunate, but true as Alton Brown noted, 99.9% of the recipes on the web are garbage, and it seems today anybody can publish books with major inaccuracies that will never be corrected.

Trying to find good reliable sources for recipes is very difficult on line. And searching for accurate reference material is also very hard when it comes to the science of cooking and cured meats.

Can anyone recommend a good scientific based book or reference for meats. I'm trying to put together a good reference library that will supplement what I've learned over the years to pass down to my children who will one day take over our business.
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Re: Sausage Making: The Definitive Guide with Recipes

Postby quietwatersfarm » Fri Jan 30, 2015 11:27 am

I agree with everyone views on 'definitive' etc and also the technical flaws we see even in bestselling books. I would suggest though, in this case, the recipes them,selves are probably top notch. I have used many recipes from Ryan and been almost universally pleased with the results.

It m,ay be that the publishers wanted something with 'extra' padding around 'the art and craft' of sausagemaking where a good recipe book would have been better.
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