On any given weekend, there's a good chance I'll head to my local Whole Foods for groceries on a Saturday or Sunday morning. And if I do, there's also a good chance that on my walk there, the smell of pancakes and sausages cooking at the diner down the street will waft my way, triggering my breakfast cravings that I probably haven't addressed yet.
Which is why, when I get to the store, I am often powerless in the face of the sausage section of the meat case. Sausages probably aren't on my list, but it won't matter. I will be buying breakfast sausages to fry up as soon as I get home.
Recently, I noticed that the store was selling an intriguing breakfast sausage, a pork version flavored with maple syrup and...blueberries? What? I had to try it! It sounded just weird enough to be unexpectedly great.
And it was! But my desire to eat like, four of those sausages in one sitting was maybe going to become a problem, so I thought about the giant bag of frozen wild blueberries in my freezer and decided I could remedy this potential problem, by making my own batch of sausages, with turkey instead of pork, so I could lull myself into a false sense of virtuosity. Also? I just happen to really, really like turkey sausage. And turkey burgers. And anything with ground turkey.
Thanks to the wonder that is The Food Lab, figuring out how to make my own sausage at home was stupidly easy. Turns out, the trick is salt and some time. Who knew? So I threw together a mix of turkey, maple syrup, and blueberries and let it all hang out overnight. The next morning, I shaped the mix into link shapes and fried them up. These sausages were flavorful, a little sweet, a little salty, and with the springy texture of the best breakfast sausages. I somehow managed not to eat the whole batch, and stashed some away in the freezer for future breakfasts. I'm sad to report that I finished these off on Sunday, but it's not a problem, I'm definitely making more!
Maple Blueberry Turkey Sausage
Adapted from The Food Lab
- 1 lb ground turkey (not breast meat)
- 1 1/2 tbs maple syrup
- 1 tbs kosher salt (or 2% of the weight of the meat)
- 1 tsp dried sage
- 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup wild blueberries (drained and thawed if frozen, see note)
- Combine all ingredients in a bowl until well mixed, cover with plastic wrap or transfer to a plastic, sealable bag and refrigerate 12-24 hours.
- When ready to cook, massage for 5 minutes by hand (this is obviously easier and less messy using the bag).
- Heat a pan with a little oil over medium-high heat. Shape meat into patties or links and cook until well browned and cooked through. Serve hot!
- You can use fresh or frozen regular blueberries for this too; wild blueberries were what I had and their smaller size worked well with staying contained in the sausage, but use what you can find!