Smoking Sausage

I have smoked brisket, pork ribs, and pork butts so far. It was time to try to make my own sausage. I have been scared to make it. I thought I would f- it up. I have been smoking/cooking quite a few things lately on Sundays and decided it was time to tackle this beast. Amber got me the Kitchenaid attachments one year for Christmas, and I was finally able to use the sausage stuffer.
I found natural hog casing at HEB for under five bucks. You could make a lot of sausage with one package. My plan was to make a few links. I was going to use 50% beef chuck and 50% pork butt. I thought I had grounded up beef chuck leftover from making Italian sausage, but I was wrong. It was pork butt. I need to label stuff before I put them in the freezer. I guess I was going to do an all-pork sausage. I had about seven pounds of pork. I added salt, black pepper, garlic, and crushed red pepper. I pan fried the mixture just to make sure it tasted okay. I was happy with it.
You had to soak the casing for about it an hour before you can stuff it. This part was hard. I was going to make three long links but ended up making only one. Amber had to help. It took forever to fill the whole casing. If I was going to make sausage more often, I would invest in a better setup. I will suck it up for now.
The plan was to give the sausage an oak smoke bath for a few hours. I only put one log in the firebox to start with. The sausage hit an internal temperature of 160 degrees in one hour. My sausage was done already. Dammit. I HATE my smoker. I need to get a new one. It is too small and crappily made. Any recs? For it being my first time, I was kind of proud of myself. The sausage tasted good. The grind was perfect. The casing was snappy. I will try to make a beef one next time and also try to do a creative one soon too. I want more smoke next time and to increase the fat content. I will probably save some brisket fat trimmings and add it to the next mixture. I had a ton of leftover mixture so I have been eating it as breakfast sausage for the next week or so.

I want to give out props to all of the BBQ joints that make their own sausage. It is not easy and is time consuming. I promise I will not be hard on you guys the next time I roll through...

Until next time, happy smoking...

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