I get homesick sometimes. When that happens I like to make myself a treat of some kind of food that I can’t get locally. That might be Cincinnati Chili, or Frisch’s Tartar Sauce on a big old burger, or White Castle inspired sliders.
One other thing I really miss is Schmidt’s Sausage Bahama Mama’s. Schmidt’s is an amazing restaurant in the German Village in Columbus, Ohio. If you’re in the area go there. Or you can go to Oktoberfest Zinzinnati and have a Bahama Mama there. And also a cream puff as big as your head! And ps for my Wisconsin peeps, they make the cream puffs the right way, with custard, not whipped cream. I’m going to run now.
You can surely order the sausages from Schmidt’s for delivery, but be prepared to take out a second to pay for them (and the shipping). I’m cheap so I decided to make them. This is my second attempt.
Because I’m not a sausage maker on the regular (though I did learn how to in home ec in high school. That just shows you how old I am), I sought out the Googles for a place to start. I ran across this thread on smoked meat forums, and these people seemed to know their stuff. The first time I followed eDJs spicing scheme for my spicing, but I did a more coarse grind. The spicing was amazing, but the texture wasn’t quite what I was looking for (though they were delicious!)
This time I followed curious aardvark’s recipe pretty much to a T including the instructions, and the texture was spot on, though my husband and I recalled that the Bahama Mama was just a bit spicier.
The spicing. I didn’t have hot paprika, and that probably made a difference. I used smoked paprika.
First round of grinding for the pork, coarse grind.
Pork after the second round of grinding.
Pork, beef, spices and liquid. Here’s where I diverted from curious aardvark. I found a Leinenkugel’s Creamy Dark in the garage and used the heck out of that instead of water. Because why use water when you have beer?
And I mixed the crap out of it. What you’re going for here is some emulsification of the fats and liquid. That contributes to the dense and homogeneous texture in a sausage or hot dog.
The meats. After it’s beat. I put in the refrigerator overnight.
The next day, I stuffed them. This is a two-man operation unless you have a dedicated sausage maker. These LEM pre-tubed hog casings make it a bit easier. You’re going to want to soak these in cold water before using and I’m going to warn you, they smell. I get it that some people object to the smell, but folks…think about what they are. Regardless, I wouldn’t use any synthetic or casein casing. It just wouldn’t give you the right *snap*, in my opinion.
5 pounds of sausages. I’m not going to lie to you, this was a complete pain due to how glue-y the texture is on these but it’s totally worth it.
And make into links. Check out a video on how to do this because clearly I’m not the authority (and I muddled my way though it. Inconsistently as you can see).
Then I poached them in water, and gave them a cold water bath as curious aardvark suggested. My husband cold smoke them over hickory for about 2 hours. We use a Masterbuilt Smoker and love it, though people will tell you it’s not authentic. And I suppose it isn’t but it works and it’s easy.
And grilled. The snap was amazing. Next time I will kick the spicing up just a bit but the texture was perfect on these!
I served them with some homemade buns and homemade spicy brown mustard. They were very good and well worth the effort!
Copycat Bahama Mama Sausages
- 3 lb fatty pork shoulder
- 2 lb cheap beef
- 1 cup ice cold water I used beer.
- 1 cup skimmed milk powder I used whole milk powder because that's what I had on hand.
- 6 good tsp salt
- 5 tsp paprika I would also add 1/2 teaspoon cayenne next time.
- 4 tsp sugar
- 2 tsp hot mustard powder
- 5 gm cure #1
- See written instructions.