Making homemade Merguez is well worth the effort. This sausage originated from North Africa and it’s characteristic red meat is bursting with flavor thanks to some heavy seasoning. Centuries ago, Merguez was made with lamb and then dried. This offered a portable source of protein that could withstand the warm temperatures.
For extra reading, check out my article on the history of sausage, which includes Merguez.
If you crave all things hot, add a teaspoon of sumac to this recipe. This is a commonly used spice in North Africa and is available is specialty food stores or from online food stores.
- 500g lamb shoulder (cubed ¾”)
- ½ Tbsp of paprika
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 3 tsp harissa paste
- 1 clove of crushed garlic
- 1 ½ tsp Kosher salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 50 ml ice water
- Lamb casings, soaked in warm water for 30 minutes
- Add cubed lamb, paprika, coriander, cumin, cayenne pepper, harissa paste, garlic, salt and black pepper to a large bowl and mix thoroughly.
- Add to freezer for half an hour until the meat is starting to harden.
- Grind meat into a bowl, sitting in ice, using a meat grinder with a fine plate.
- Use a stand mixer with a paddle to stir the mixture and add the water. Continue mixing until the water is full combined and the meat is sticky but holds its shape.
- Take a small amount of the meat and cook in a skillet for a few minutes. Taste the meat and add seasonings if required.
- Stuff the sausage meat into the casings using a sausage stuffer. Once you have used all the meat you can begin tie off the end of the casing and begin twisting the sausage at 6″ intervals to create links. Remember to alternate the direction you twist the casings to avoid the links from unravelling.
- Refrigerate the links overnight.
How to Cook Merguez
To cook this sausage you’re best to use a frying pan and cook on a low heat for about 20 minutes. A hot pan will cause the casings to burst and you’ll lose all the juices. The end result – a dry sausage.
Once you’ve cooked your Merguez, serve on a bed of couscous with lemon segments to offer some extra zest.
For further reading, check out my in-depth article on how to make sausages – the ultimate sausage making guide.