No wonder Peggy has so many loyal customers. Her sausages are made of the best pork cuts, plus rusk, seasonings, and a bit of water just to bind the mix. That's it. She gave me sections to de-bone and break down so she could mince them. My job was to remove bones, rind (skin), any veins, glands, excess fat, or bruised meat. Peggy won't have any of that nonsense in her sausages.
It sounds a horrible job, but it really isn't. If you've ever had any interest in anatomy it's fascinating from that angle alone. While I cut, she gives me tips on how to hold my knife better (and safer), or where I can seam a joint to make it easier to remove fat. As I get more comfortable with the knife, I can break down the joints quicker. I'm still miles off Peggy's speed though, even with her thumb in traction.
Peggy asked had I ever made sausages before. I had not. I had seen sausages hanging in a butcher's window before and that was the sum total of my experience, besides eating them of course.
Sausages are linked in groups of three, strung together like Christmas lights-
This looked like skilled labor to me. We had over 50 pounds of sausages to make for the wedding and for customers' orders so I needed to get skilled - fast.
I rinsed the natural casings out, which are preserved in brine. Washing them removes the excess salt. Peggy filled them, then demonstrated the technique: pinch and twist, make another, twist and push through the first two, pull up, pinch in half, twist that pair and start again. Easy, right?
Yeah. It made that much sense to me too.
But as I watched her, I realised it was no different than making a basic chain stitch, a common stitch used in knitting and embroidery. It's the basic stitch on your sewing machine -