Homemade Moroccan Merguez Sausage
These spicy North African sausages are popular in Morocco, where they are grilled and served in a variety of ways--plain, with couscous, in sandwiches, with eggs or stuffed into pastries. Merguez sausage can be made with ground lamb, ground beef or a mixture of the two. My favorite is an omelet with chopped tomatoes, onions, and crema fresca.
- 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
- 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 3 teaspoons ground cayenne pepper omit if you like it mild
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon cardamom optional
- 1 teaspoon ground sumac optional
- 3 pounds ground lamb or 1/2 part ground beef
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup fresh cilantro finely minced
- 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves finely minced
- 6 large garlic cloves finely minced
- 4 teaspoons kosher salt
- In a heavy bottom skillet or cast iron pan, combine the cumin, fennel, and coriander seeds and toast over medium heat for 2 minutes or until fragrant. Let cool slightly, then grind in a spice grinder until fine and powdery. (Note: You can also used ground spices instead of whole, but the flavor will be better with the whole spices)
- If desired, fry a small amount of the meat in a skillet and taste it to check the flavor. Adjust the seasonings as desired.
- To shape, roll the seasoned lamb mixture into small tubes, about 4 inches long by 1 inch wide. You can also make patties if desired. The sausage can be cooked right away, or you can wrap and freeze indefinitely. To cook, grill the sausage or cook in a skillet until cooked through.
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