Saturday, January 10

55 Pounds of Sausage, 25 Pounds of Salami - Vegetarian's Beware!

Last week we got together with our new friend Vittorio outside of Fano (on the coast) for a day of sausage & salami making! Vittorio has a sausage making haven in his backyard - all in old converted garage. He has been doing this for years not for work but for the pleasure of it & the passion he has for the meat!

In a little over 4 hours we had produced 55 pounds of sausage & 25 pounds of salami - all from absolute scratch!

Vittorio takes his sausage making VERY seriously - so seriously, that he has no real recipe, all done by the eye. All winter he turns hundreds of kilos of raw pork into sausages, salami, lonzo and pancetta all for his lucky friends & family! Winter is best for curing meats with the cold air passing through the tiny prick marks left in the casings.

It is a bit ambitious to make sausages at home, especially if you are reading this in the States so I won't type out the entire recipe - BUT if you make your way out to Le Marche this Spring the 25th of May - 2nd of April we have organized a sausage making class & week of cooking classes!

Sausage Making Basics:

Find the best pork shoulder possible
Salt & pepper
Half a glass of white wine

Grind it all up together & stuff it into casings.

The sausages can be eaten immediatly or hung to dry for about a month in a cool dry place. Then placed under oil, lard or in a vaccum sealed bag - this is will last for a good six months.

Of the 15 kilos that we made about 12 kilos are being dried for our guests to devour this spring & summer. So the next time you are at La Tavola Marche you just may be lucky enough to try our homemade goods!

At one point I heard Vittorio call to his wife - "prendi un pentolino e forchetta" (bring me a little pan & a fork) ... Oh I knew what this meant - SAMPLE TIME!! And boy was I right - not long after the sweet smells of sizzling sausages filled the garage. After all the meat, I was a bit parched & asked for a glass of water - Vittorio grinned - "No bevi il vino!" (no drink the wine) I love that wine is perferred at all times over the inferior aqua.

I laugh to myself thinking of a particular episode of Seinfeld where Kramer uses Jerry's apartment to watch a movie - cut to Jerry opening the door with tons sausages hung from the ceiling - what is going on in here? "You said I could watch a instructional video on how to make sausages!" For some reason this gets me everytime! Now we look like Jerry's apt with vines of meat hanging from our 200 year-old wood beam rafters!

It was a great way to spend a cold winter morning - elbow deep in meat! Grazie Vittorio!

For more information on our cooking classes & sausage making email me:

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