Finally got time to post the recipe. Hope it is of some use. (This was a compilation of several recipes I looked at on the internet.)
4 lbs. ground pork. (I used country ribs to keep it on the lean side. Pork butt is recommended.)
1 Tb. paprika
1 1/2 Tbs. kosher salt
1 1/2 tsp. coarse black pepper
3/4 tsp. ground red pepper
1/4 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. cumin
3/4 tsp. file powder
2 Tbs. finely minced fresh garlic
1 tsp. pink curing salt or Morton's Tender Quick curing salt
*1/2 cup cold water
Cut meat into pieces that will go through a meat grinder and mix seasonings into them as evenly as possible. Some recipes call for allowing this to marinate for several hours or overnight, but I did not do this.
Run the seasoned meat through a grinder with coarse disk (as for hamburger).
*At this point, most recipes call for grinding the sausage into hog casings. I assume this is why the water is recommended to allow it to go into the casing easier.
Since I hadn't done casings before, I didn't include the water. Instead, I rolled it into approximaely 8" links about 1" around and refrigerated them about an hour so as to become more firm for handling.
Smoking - Again most recipes call for cold smoking for up to 10 hours. I smoked mine for three hours with pecan wood at app. 200-250 degrees.
Final result. This sausage tastes better than any I have ever bought. It has a slight kick to it, which I like. Most store bought versions seem bland to me and don't taste any different than other types of sausages. However, it is somewhat on the dry side due to no casings and not cold smoking it. So far, we have eaten it as a snack on crackers. Haven't tried it yet in gumbo.
According to how it works in gumbos, I may get some casings and try my luck at that version next time.
That's all I know at this point!
Edited by fishslime (Today at 09:32 AM)