Not all sausage is created equal. In fact, sausage doesn’t even have to be made of meat. Seafood sausage is a succulent alternative to the usual high-fat, high-calorie pork or beef sausage. Lighter in texture and flavor, seafood sausage is the perfect summer grill option when you want something besides meat. Never had seafood sausage? No problem, here are a few tips for making your own seafood sausage and three healthy seafood sausage recipes.
Tips for making seafood sausage
1. Choose your favorite seafood
Any type of seafood can be used for seafood sausage, and you can even combine a few different types of fish together. Fattier fish, such as salmon and tuna, tend to work better, but halibut, flounder, scallops, shrimp, lobster and even crab will render delicious results.
2. Consider casing — or not
Casing, the thin layer of material that holds sausage together, is not necessary, especially if you are trying to keep your sausage meat-free (casings are traditionally made from pork and sheep, though synthetic casings are becoming increasingly more available). You can use casing if you want a more traditional looking sausage or you can opt for a looser patty-like sausage. Parchment paper can also be used to form your seafood sausage if you don’t want to use casing but still want a traditional look.
3. Form your sausage
Be sure your sausage ingredients are finely chopped (a food processor will save you chopping time). If you choose to use casing, make sure you have a pastry bag or a meat grinder with a funnel attachment specifically made to stuff sausage into casing. Don’t overstuff casing and leave a couple of inches free at the ends so you can tie the casing. If you aren’t using casing, simply form your seafood sausage mixture into patties or your preferred shape.
4. Take care when cooking
Seafood sausage can be cooked the same way as regular pork or beef sausage. Grilled is a good choice for the summer, but seafood sausage can also be cooked in a slow cooker, boiled, broiled, or pan-cooked. Seafood sausage is a little more delicate than regular sausage so, if your sausage isn’t in casing, cook it carefully because it can easily fall apart.
5. Serve creatively
Seafood sausage may not be your first choice for a morning meal, but it can be a unique addition for a summer brunch. You can serve seafood sausage in a sandwich or hot dog bun topped with tartar sauce. You can also partner it with pasta and a light creamy sauce, or simply serve it hot right off the grill alongside your other grilled goodies. Just be creative — once you taste sausage from the deep blue sea, you’ll surely find many ways to serve it.