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Growing up in England, any kind of cooked breakfast was actually a rarity. It usually involved either a) the goodwill of a grandma who would get up at 6am or earlier, regardless what day of the week it was or b) later in life stumbling to a pub that did a full fry up, because hangover. Those were the only two occasions a sausage ever graced my breakfast plate. And, yes, that would be a traditional banger, thankyouverymuch.
Breakfast sausage wasn’t even a concept that made sense to me until my twenties, after a few perplexing Sunday morning experiences at American diners. Where you could find me loudly exclaiming over the portion sizes that could feed me for a day, or the fact that everything seemed to come with limitless carbs (hash browns or potatoes? toast or tortillas? biscuit or muffin?) but asking for sausage AND bacon somehow seemed inappropriate unless one was a beard-wielding hipster-male in plaid. Or something. In any case, I was slowly converted to the idea that sausage didn’t HAVE to come in giant links and that the convenience of having casing-free sausage options was a Good Thing.
While my days of hangover-induced, morning-meat-feasts are thankfully behind me, I’m still however a fan of a weekend breakfast that features a little more protein than I usually enjoy throughout the week, so the humble breakfast sausage does make an appearance in my kitchen and on my table here and there. Having a very meat and taters husband may also have a little sway over the popularity of breakfast sausage around here, too. But, let’s face it: I’m too lazy to stuff my own casings to make links, so despite my upbringing, I’m totally a-ok with keeping my breakfast sausage in dinky little patties that cook up in less than half the time.
While there’s nothing wrong with the traditional sage-heavy breakfast sausage recipes, sometimes I like to switch it up a little. This Chive & Tarragon Breakfast Sausage recipe is one that I turn to when I want something a little different: lighter, but still fragrant with herbs, the use of punchy chives and anise-scented tarragon is just unexpected enough to liven things up without being so far from breakfast flavors that they’re confusing. It’s a subtle pairing that doesn’t overpower, but just keeps things interesting while still going a-ok with other traditional breakfast options.
Now, when it comes to making sausage, the best pork to use is definitely NOT the standard ground pork you can buy in grocery stores, since that’s too lean. You want to use pork that’s at least an 80 : 20 meat to fat ratio. Leaner pork equals dry sausage. Ain’t nobody got time for that. My favorite inexpensive cut of pork for sausage making is boneless country style pork ribs, since they have a great marbling of fat throughout.
Despite the name, boneless country style pork ribs aren’t really ribs at all. They’re actually thick, rib shaped strips of pork cut from the shoulder. I’m a weirdo who usually grinds her own sausage meat at home, since Mr Meatified brought home a meat grinder a few years back during the great “pink slime” grocery store scandal, but you can ask your grocery store butcher counter to grind the meat for you. You could also try out the meat grinder attachment for your Kitchen Aid or The Kitchn has a tutorial on using your food processor to make your own ground meat here.
Like with so many other recipes, this breakfast sausage tastes even better the next day cold. (Why IS that?) If you can make up the meat mixture a little ahead of time, giving the gentle chive and tarragon flavors time to marry together with the meat is a nice touch, too. You can mix up the meat the night before if you want and the patties freeze & and cook from frozen beautifully. Just lay the uncooked patties out on a baking tray lined with wax paper and freeze for 1 hour until solid. Then you can transfer the patties to a sealed container or freezer bag, with a little slip of wax paper between each one to prevent sticking.
Looking for more AIP breakfast ideas? Check out 85 Amazing AIP Breakfasts!
This recipe was part of the Paleo AIP Recipe Roundtable.Print
Chive & Tarragon Breakfast Sausage
- MIX: Add all of the ingredients to a mixing bowl and, using your hands, work the seasoning into the meat until it’s evenly distributed and a little sticky to the touch.
- SHAPE: Divide the meat mixture into 8 evenly sized portions. Roll each portion into patties that are approximately 3 inches / 7.5 cm in diameter.
- FRY: Heat the oil of your choice in a skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add your breakfast sausage patties to the skillet. Fry until golden brown and cooked through, about 4 minutes or so per side.
- FREEZE: You can cook through and then freeze the patties; simply thaw and reheat before serving. Alternatively, you can lay the uncooked patties out on a baking tray lined with wax paper and freeze for 1 hour until solid. Then you can transfer the patties to a sealed container or freezer bag, with a little slip of wax paper between each one to prevent sticking. To cook them from frozen, simply pop them into a preheated oiled pan and cook as above, adding an extra minute or so per side for thawing time in the pan.
The best pork for making sausage isn’t the standard ground pork you can buy in grocery stores, since that’s too lean. You want to use pork that’s approximately 80:20 meat to fat ratio and I find that boneless country style pork ribs are a great, inexpensive purchase with a good amount of fat.
Despite the name, boneless country style pork ribs aren’t ribs at all. They’re nicely marbled, rib shaped strips of pork cut from the shoulder. I usually grind my own at home, since Mr Meatified brought home a meat grinder a few years back, but you can ask your grocery store butcher counter to grind the meat for you.