Screw Jimmy Dean: Homemade Breakfast Sausage You'll Flip Over
Saturday I was wandering around Publix looking for sundries for a Father's Day brunch I was having at my place for my girlfriend's father. He's a real dad's dad: He enjoys motorcycles, power tools, target shooting, good booze, and, of course, meat. So whatever brunch I put together had to include at least two quality kinds of meaty goodness, preferably made from pork. But I wasn't going to buy some crappy, frozen breakfast sausage, and there weren't any fresh patties ready to go in the meat department. So I decided I was going to make my own. And here's how I did it.
The sausage was actually really easy to make -- I just took ingredients I had around the house and made the patties the night before, then fried them up in the morning in my cast-iron skillet. I was going for a bit of sweet, a bit of spicy, and a bit of freshness from the herbs. And here's what I came up with:
Homemade Breakfast Sausage
1 lb. ground pork
1 Tbs. fresh thyme, finely chopped
1 Tbs. fresh cilantro, finely chopped
1 Tbs. brown sugar
1 Tbs. dijon mustard
1/2 Tbs. olive oil
1/2 Tbs. kosher salt
1 tsp. ancho chili powder
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. grated nutmeg
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Form into eight 2" wide, 1/2" thick patties.
Fry the little patties with a touch of butter or olive oil in a hot skillet, making sure to get them nice and brown (but not burnt) on each side.
This morning I fried up two leftover patties and made an egg sandwich with American cheese and an English muffin.
The sausage was nice and peppery from the chili powder and thyme, while the sugar and mustard imparted a perfect amount of sweetness. The cilantro added just the right amount of herby, floral lightness to balance it all out. The only thing I would do differently next time: add perhaps a quarter-pound of finely chopped pork fat, say fatback, to keep the patties nice and moist and add some textural variation.