Seasonings and other ingredients for 5 lbs. (2.25 kg)
- 7 1/2 tsp. (37.5 ml) Bradley Sugar Cure (Do not use more than this amount.)
- 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) coriander, ground
- 2 tsp. (10 ml) onion powder
- 2 tsp. (10 ml) black pepper, finely ground
- 1 tsp. (5 ml) salt (optional — see below)
- 1 tsp. (5 ml) mustard seed, ground
- 1/2 tsp. (2.5 ml) garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp. (2.5 ml) marjoram
- 1/2 tsp. (2.5 ml) mace
- 2 eggs, large, well beaten
- 2/3 cup (160 ml) water
- 1 cup (240 ml) finely powdered skim milk
Note: If the meat weighs either more or less than 5 pounds (2.25 kg), the amount of cure mix applied must be proportional to that weight. For example, if the weight of the meat is 2 1/2 pounds (1.15 kg), then each ingredient, including the Bradley Cure, needs to be cut in half.
Prepare 14 feet (420 cm) of small diameter hog casing; rinse thoroughly. Soak in water, in the refrigerator, overnight. Rinse again before using.
Grind 3 pounds (1360g) of fatty pork butt and 2 pounds (900g) of beef chuck with a 3/16-inch (4.8-mm) plate — or use a plate with smaller holes, if available. If the meat is ground twice, it will become a little finer the second time. Chill the meat thoroughly.
- Mix the Bradley Sugar Cure, seasonings, water, and skim milk in an 8 quart (8 liter) stainless steel mixing bowl until they are thoroughly blended and the powdered milk has dissolved. (For a normal salt taste, add the optional 1 teaspoon of salt; for a mild salt taste, omit the salt.)
- Add the meat and mix well with hands (about 3 minutes). Chill again.
- Stuff the sausage in hog casings, and twist the sausage rope into links.
- Refrigerate at least one hour — overnight is better.
- Continue processing by using one of the two options described below. (Frankfurters are traditionally smoked.)
Smoking and cooking
Option 1 — Hot smoked
If you wish to hot smoke the frankfurters, hang the raw links in a 150°F (65°C) smoker until the outside is dry to the touch (this will require at least 30 minutes). Make sure that the damper is fully open. Raise the temperature gradually to 180°F (82°C). Close the damper most of the way in order to reduce the airflow and, thereby, reduce dehydration. Hot smoke at this temperature until the internal temperature is 160°F (71°C). Remove the links from the smoker, and spray them with cold water until the internal temperature is below 110°F (43°C). Hang at room temperature for about 30 minutes. Refrigerate overnight before eating; this allows the smoke flavor to mellow. Freeze the links that will not be consumed within two days.
Option 2 — Smoking and steam cooking
Steam cooking will result in less shrinkage than cooking in the smoker. Follow the directions for hot smoking (above), but remove the links from the smoker when the internal temperature is about 135°F (57°C). Steam the sausage until the internal temperature is 160°F (71°C). Spray with cold water, hang at room temperature for about 30 minutes, and refrigerate.
Alternatively, after smoking, poach the franks in 180°F (82.2°C) water until the internal temperature is 160°F (71°C). Eat immediately, or spray with water and refrigerate, uncovered. After the sausage is chilled, package it in plastic bags. Freeze the links that will not be consumed within two days.
Instructions prepared by Warren R. Anderson, author of Mastering the Craft of Smoking Food.