Wednesday, January 18, 2012

How is Smoked Thuringer Cooked?

Thuringer is a semidry style of sausage typically made from pork, beef or a combination of the two. It is mildly seasoned and can contain a variety of spices and herbs. Smoked thuringer undergoes thermal processing to add smoke and heat once the sausage is prepared and stuffed into casings. Thermal processing, followed by partial drying, contributes smoke flavor and helps preserve the meat to extend its shelf life. Because the process heats the sausage to a sufficient temperature to kill food-borne pathogens, smoked thuringer is safe to consume without further cooking. However, you can cook it in a variety of ways in addition to eating it cold.

Step 1

Grill the smoked thuringer over a charcoal or gas grill. Heat the grill to medium. Place the smoked thuringer on the grill on an area of the grate that is hot enough to heat the sausage thoroughly and crisp the outer casing but not so hot that the skin splits open. Using tongs, turn the thuringer frequently to prevent charring. Cook until the internal temperature, measured at the thickest part of the sausage, registers 165 degrees Fahrenheit on a meat thermometer and the outer skin is nicely browned.

Step 2

Simmer the smoked thuringer. Fill a stockpot with water and heat to boiling on top of the stove. Add the sausage and immediately lower the temperature to keep the water at no more than a simmer, as boiling the sausage can cause its casing to break open. Continue to cook at a simmer until the inside of the smoked thuringer reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit. For flavor variety, simmer the sausage in beer rather than water.

Step 3

Combine the simmering and grilling cooking methods to intensify the flavor of the smoked thuringer. For example, simmer the sausage in beer for five to 10 minutes before transferring it to a hot grill to finish cooking. Alternatively, grill the sausage until crisp and browned, score the cooked thuringer in several places and soak it in simmering beer for several minutes.

Tips and Warnings

  • Maintain the regional character of smoked thuringer – named for Thuringen, the area in Germany from which it originates – by serving the cooked sausage with sauerkraut and mustard. Avoid using a fork to move the sausages, as the tines can pierce the casing and cause moisture loss.
  • Keep uncooked smoked thuringer refrigerated for freshness and safety. Store cooked smoked thuringer in the refrigerator if you do not eat it soon after cooking. Piercing the sausage with the meat thermometer can cause the release of juices; therefore, minimize the number of times you check the internal temperature of the smoked thuringer.

Things You'll Need

  • Grill
  • Tongs
  • Meat thermometer
  • Stockpot
  • Water or beer
  • Stove top

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