Are you a fan of summer sausage but looking for ways to take it to the next level? Look no further than adding cheese!
Mixing cheese with summer sausage can result in a delicious and savory treat that’s perfect for snacking, entertaining, or even as a gift.
But before you start, it’s important to know a few tips and tricks to ensure the best possible outcome. In this article, we’ll guide you through the process of adding cheese to summer sausage and suggest some of the best cheese options to try.
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Discover the Best Kind of Cheese for Summer Sausage
Hard Cheeses: A Safe Bet
When it comes to summer sausage, hard cheeses are generally the best option. Hard cheeses have a lower fat content than softer varieties, which means they are less likely to melt quickly. This is important because you don’t want your cheese to melt and create holes in your sausage.
Soft Cheeses: Proceed with Caution
While hard cheeses are generally the safest bet for summer sausage, some people prefer the flavor and texture of softer cheeses.
There are some factors to consider if you decide to go this route. Firstly, make sure you choose a cheese with a low moisture content, as this will prevent it from melting too fast.
Secondly, you may want to consider freezing your cheese before adding it to your sausage. This can help it retain its shape and also prevent it from melting too quickly.
Ultimately, the type of cheese you use in your summer sausage is a matter of personal preference. While hard cheeses are generally the safest option, there’s no harm in experimenting with different varieties to see what works best for you.
You might even consider adding multiple types of cheese to your sausage to create a unique and flavorful blend.
Is High Temp Cheese Necessary for Summer Sausage?
If you’re planning to add cheese to your summer sausage, you may have come across the term “high temp cheese.” But is this type of cheese really necessary for your recipe?
High temp cheese is a variety that is specifically designed to be mixed with meat products. It is sold in chunks that can be easily mixed with sausage meat.
The benefit of using high temp cheese is that it will hold its consistency under heat, and won’t change shape or melt. This makes it a popular choice for grilling and other high-heat cooking methods.
While high temp cheese is not necessary for making summer sausage, it can be a good option if you want to ensure that your cheese does not melt or lose its shape during the cooking process.
If you do decide to use high temp cheese in your summer sausage, there are several specific types that work well. These include:
When using Provolone in summer sausage, stick to harder, high-quality pieces. Deli versions of Provolone are often a good choice, as they tend to be firm and have a strong flavor.
Provolone is a semi-hard cheese that comes in a range of shapes and sizes. It has a smooth flavor with salty undertones and hints of nuts. This makes it an excellent pairing for summer sausage, especially if you’re using pork as your main ingredient.
To get the best results with Provolone in your summer sausage, try grating the cheese and mixing it into the sausage meat before stuffing it into the casing. This will help distribute the cheese evenly throughout the sausage.
Sharp Cheddar Cheese
Cheddar cheese is a popular cheese that can be found in various forms and flavors. One of the most common variations of cheddar is sharp cheddar, which is aged between three and six months.
When it comes to using cheddar cheese in summer sausage, sharp cheddar is a great option.
Its strong flavor can complement the savory taste of the sausage and provide a burst of richness with each bite.
Additionally, sharp cheddar has a firm texture that holds up well when mixed with sausage meat.
Pepper Jack Cheese
Pepper Jack cheese is a popular cheese variety in the United States, known for its spicy flavor and creamy texture. It is a derivative of Monterey Jack cheese, and it is often used in Tex-Mex cuisine due to its heat and flavor.
When it comes to making summer sausage, adding Pepper Jack cheese can provide a spicy kick to your recipe. It is a high-temp cheese, meaning it can withstand high temperatures without melting, making it perfect for mixing into sausage meat.
Pepper Jack cheese contains habanero chilies, garlic, rosemary, and sweet peppers, giving it a unique and memorable taste. While it has a spicy kick, it also has a soft buttery taste that balances out the heat.
Halloumi cheese is a semi-hard cheese that originated in Cyprus and is made from a combination of goat and sheep milk.
What sets halloumi apart from other cheeses is its high melting point, which makes it a perfect grilling cheese and a great addition to homemade summer sausage.
While it may be more expensive than other cheeses, its unique flavor and texture make it worth the investment for a smaller batch of homemade summer sausage.
Can I Use Regular Cheese in Summer Sausage?
So, if you’re thinking about adding regular cheese to your summer sausage, it’s definitely doable, but you need to be careful about which type of cheese you use.
Cheeses that have a lot of moisture, like brie, are not a good choice because they can affect the texture of your sausage.
However, there are some regular cheeses that will work just fine. For example, Swiss cheese is a great option. Cheshire cheese and mozzarella are also possibilities, but just keep in mind that mozzarella has a slightly higher moisture content.
Cheese that has a low melting point won’t hold up as well as high-temp cheese, and might melt and separate from the sausage during cooking.
So, if you can get your hands on high-temp cheese, that’s definitely the way to go. But if you can’t find it or it’s too expensive, using regular cheese with a low moisture content can still be a good option.
How to Add Cheese to Your Summer Sausage
Choose the Right Cheese: High-temp cheese is the best option because it won’t melt and ruin the texture of your sausage. However, if high-temp cheese isn’t available, you can try regular cheeses with lower moisture levels such as Swiss cheese or mozzarella.
Cube the Cheese: If the cheese isn’t pre-sliced, cut it into small cubes to ensure even distribution.
Mix by Hand: When adding cheese to the meat mixture, mix everything by hand. This ensures that the cheese is evenly distributed and won’t clump together.
Refrigerate or Freeze the Cheese: If you’re worried about the cheese melting or losing its shape, refrigerate or freeze it before adding it to the meat mixture.
The Right Amount of Cheese to Use
As a rule of thumb, it’s best to use one pound of cheese for every 10-12 pounds of meat. This ratio strikes the perfect balance of texture and flavor.
When adding cheese, try not to exceed 10% of the meat’s total weight by much. This will ensure that the sausage has a well-rounded taste and texture.
Adding cheese to summer sausage is a delicious way to take your homemade sausage to the next level. By choosing the right cheese, prepping it properly, and mixing it thoroughly with the sausage, you can create a flavorful and savory treat that’s sure to please.
So next time you’re making summer sausage, don’t hesitate to add some cheese for an extra burst of flavor!