HUNGARIAN SAUSAGE- Magyar Kolbász by Clara Czegeny

Hungarian Kolbász – consists of pork and beef seasoned with traditional flavours of Hungary’s cuisine – paprika, garlic, salt and pepper. The fresh sausage freezes well. Years ago then did not have large freezer, so sausage was smoked to keep. This sausage is heavy on garlic and paprika. The recipe that follows is for fresh sausage. Fresh Kolbász is roasted in the oven and served with fresh white bread, dill pickles or beets and a glass of red wine.

My father carried on the traditions from his family especially when he arrived in Canada. He used to make smoked sausage in the true old-fashioned Hungarian way. Some of the sausage would be prepared immediately and cooked fresh, while the rest would be smoked and dried like pepperoni to be used in all kinds of dishes with potatoes and sauerkraut: such as Rakott Krumpli, Kolbászos Paprikás Krumpli or Lecso.

(Although this recipe sounds like a LOT of meat, it only makes about 11 pairs of 2 lb links.  That’s not a lot considering the number of recipes you can use it in.)

22 lbs coarse ground pork (butt or shoulder)
¼ cup black pepper
¼ cup salt
5 – 6 garlic cloves
2 cups water
1/3 cup sweet paprika
2 tbsp hot paprika (erös)

Crush garlic cloves with a flat knife and course salt on a wooden cutting board. Then, place all spices in a large bowl with meat. Mix everything together well. Keep the meat mix cool. Stuff into casings using meat grinder attachment. Let the sausages hang for a day in at least 20°F centigrade. Smoking is not necessary if you plan to eat Kolbász fresh or freeze it.

You can prepare Kolbász in a variety of ways. Here are just two.

Method 1: Take several fresh links and place in a heavy frying saucepan with a cover. Pour approximately 2” of water over the sausages, cover, and bring to boil. Then, turn down heat and simmer sausages until they take on color. Turn sausages over and add more water if evaporated. Be careful not to burn. When both sides are reddish-brown, leave the cover off and continue cooking slowly to reduce liquid. You will know that it is ready, as the colour is dark reddish brown and the aromas are heavenly.

Method 2: Place links into large shallow roasting pan. Pour 1 cup water in bottom. Bake at 400°F for 45 minutes until casings become toasty brown and split. Serve with rye or crusty white bread.

Note: Sausage casing are readily available at your grocer. They are usually sold in 1 lb plastic containers preserved in vinegar.

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