Dried sausages like these hard salamis will keep longer if
you cut off only what you need at one time. For the best flavor, serve
at room temperature.
Sausage is any variety of ground meat mixed with fat
, salt, seasonings
or preservatives and stuffed into a casing. Most sausages are made
, but there are also varieties made from beef
, veal, lamb
or game animals.
Sausage comes in several shapes, sizes and forms including fully cooked, partially cooked and uncooked. Cooked
sausage is ready to eat, while partially cooked
has been cooked enough to kill any trichinae (a tiny parasite that
occurs in mammals, including pigs).
sausage may or may not be
ready to eat depending on whether it's been cured
. This smoke or salt
treatment preserves the sausage, extending storage life. Other
varieties of sausage are dried
from up to a few days to six months. The
longer a sausage is dried, the firmer it becomes.
Popular sausages include:
—Made from pork chitterlings and tripe, this spicy, smoked sausage is traditionally used in jambalaya
—Precooked and highly seasoned, it's usually served as a cold cut.
—A German sausage made of pork, veal and spices (ginger
) that's best grilled or sautéed.
—Widely used in Spanish and Mexican cooking, this coarse pork sausage is seasoned with garlic
and chili powder.
—Usually flavored with garlic and fennel or anise seed, it comes in hot (seasoned with red peppers) or sweet styles.
—This chunky, smoked sausage is usually made from a combination of pork and beef.
—This mix of pork liver and meat can be firm for slicing or spreadable for snacks and sandwiches.
—Firm and dried, this Italian salami is made from pork and beef and seasoned with black
and red pepper
At the market, read the package label to really know what
you're buying. Some sausages contain additives to preserve, thicken or
color the meat mixture. Others may use fillers such as cereal, soybean
flour or dried milk solids to stretch the meat.
All sausage should be refrigerated, but how long it will keep depends on the type.
• Uncooked, fresh:
• Uncooked, smoked:
four to six days
• Cooked, smoked (vacuum-sealed):
unopened, two weeks; after opening, one week.
• Dry and semi-dry:
Sausage can also be frozen for two months.
• Sausage should be cooked to a temperature of 160ºF. When pierced with a knife, the juices should run clear.
• Keep l