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IMG_5603We celebrated our first sheep harvest with Snag-a-Palooza, our inaugural sausage-making fiesta. An entire beast was put through the mincer, so we invited a number of mutton-connoisseurs and aspiring snag-o-nauts to come and belt out some bangers. With several sausage fillers on the go, including a couple of 5kg hand-cranked machines hired from a butcher, the group made short work of the meat and had a vast amount of sausages ready in time for a barbeque lunch. Despite having armfuls of library books to prime ourselves, there were a few handy tricks we developed over the day to make the sausage-making a little smoother:

  • Don’t tie the end of the sausage while you’re making it to allow air pumped out by the sausage-maker to escape,
  • Allow about 10cm of empty casing either end of the sausage to allow for squeezing the filling to eliminate air bubbles,
  • Construct one big sausage, then make the links afterwards by pinching, then alternate your twists forwards and backwards for each small sausage,
  • Feed the casing out slowly, allowing the mince to inflate the casing with minimal air bubbles,
  • Avoid making sausages in your loungeroom, as explosions, followed by mince showers, are possible.

Guiding fresh sausage into its spiral.


Recipe Highlights
While our sheep looked quite svelte out in the paddock, when it came to slaughter many of them had a fat content that would make bacon blush, so with all our preparations we avoided adding supplementary pork fat. As amateurs, we also opted for natural hog casings as they’re reasonably forgiving when filling. All of the recipes follow the same process: mix the meat with the selected spices by hand, pack the barrel of the sausage-maker and fill. We made all of the sausages to barbeque them fresh, rather than curing or smoking. All of the recipes below are adjusted for about 1-1.5kg mutton.


Sausage-making: a three-person job.

1 tablespoon salt
2.5 tablespoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons fennel seeds
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons thyme
3 tablespoons orange zest
1/2 cup white wine


Mince on the walls: every sausage has its breaking point.


1/2 cup breadcrumbs
Olive oil, a generous slug
2 teaspoons salt
1-2 teaspoons ground black pepper
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons oregano
2 teaspoons sumac

2 teaspoons ground coriander
3 cloves, ground
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons oregano
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 tablespoons paprika
4 cloves minced garlic
2.5 teaspoons salt
80ml vinegar (apple cider, red wine, white, your choice)


A handful of snags.

1 onion, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon anise
Fresh parsley, chopped finely
Fresh mint, chopped finely
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons red wine (at least)

2 teaspoons harissa
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2-1 teaspoon garlic powder


Stray leftovers of mix, made into rissoles and barbequed.

Thanks to all of our snagonauts: Nat, Jess, Oliver, Shane, Asha, Ly, Richard, Robyn, Jeff, Sue, Angela and Robert. A special thanks to Robyn for supplying the super-sized sausage-makers.

Useful books
Farr, R 2014, Sausage making: the definitive guide with recipes, Chronicle Books LLC, San Francisco

Kobler, C 1999, Making great sausage at home: 30 savory links from around the world plus dozens of delicious sausage dishes, Lark Books, New York