Sausage Party: Fennel and Red Wine Sausage

When we last left off with the sausage party, I had just turn 2 of my 3 lbs. of ground pork into chorizo. So, what about the last pound (well, 1.36 pounds). I wanted to take a swing at Italian sausage that I could make without casings for, well, whatever may come up.

Italian sausage is largely a fennel and pepper operation, with the crushed red pepper dictating just how hot things should get. Personally, I liked a milder sausage, but really like the fennel flavor that comes along. If I increased the fennel, I would need something that contrasted and complemented (like the red pepper). In this case, I thought the red wine would work. I thought about adding cheese, but thought that it might make things too salty.

Whereas my chorizo recipe was based on a few different suggestions that I found online, this was done completely by guesswork. I fried a small piece of it afterwards and was largely satisfied with the end product. If I changed anything in the future, I would probably add more wine. 

Note that I don’t put the sausage into casings. I rarely make meals where the sausage is cased. Usually, I find myself cutting the casing away and cooking with the lump sausage.


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Fennel and Red Wine Italian-Style Sausage
By Jared Paventi

  • 1 lb. ground pork, not lean
  • 2 tbsp. red wine
  • 3 tbsp. fennel seed
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced

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Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix on medium-low for 2 to 3 minutes until everything is thoroughly combined.

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Makes approximately 1 1/4 lbs. of sausage.


  • Mark Strong says:

    I make a similar sausage with chunks of Parmesan, it is excellent. Over time I have found I much prefer sausage in casings, if they are going to be eaten in a sandwich or the like. If it is going in a dish then loose is fine of course. I find that patties take longer to cook and have a different texture because you are missing out on the additional cooking that happens inside of the casing itself. This book is my sausage making bible

  • jaredpaventi says:

    I’ll have to take it under advisement. This was really my first foray into the sausage game, and much of what I’ve made recently has me removing the casings from the sausage before cooking. I’m not averse to casing them in the future, but I’ve also never done it before. First time for everything, right?

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