Buffalo Braunschweiger

When my friend Ben asked me if I wanted the liver out of his buffalo I jumped at the opportunity. Little did I know what an undertaking a buffalo liver was going to be. I am very used to using the livers from my deer that might be 2 pounds but this buffalo liver was a little over ten pounds. After frying some and eating it I wanted to try my hand at something new. I wanted to make braunschweiger. I grew up eating the stuff and have continued to enjoy it so figured with all that liver why not.
A while back I was at one of my favorite meat markets and found a buffalo braunschweiger so I knew it was possible. That breaunschweiger was considerable drier than the stuff you buy at the grocery store. I wanted to make sure that mine didn't dry out at all so I made sure to add some extra pork fat. I had a few odd chucks of bacon that I had made so I ground those into it as well.

I had looked for recipes in all of my books and a few recipes online and they all varied greatly. Some used curing salts some did not. Some called for powdered milk others didn't. In the end I used a conglomeration of all the recipes I found and opted not to add the curing salts not because I didn't want to but because I had run out and didn't have time to order more. If I make this again, which I probably will, I will be using the curing salts.

The end result was a success, the flavor was spot on and it didn't dry out at all. Texture was really the only thing that was different than the store bought stuff. Mine is a little firmer and doesn't spread at all although I don't think it really matters. Just for fun I put a plate out at brunch with my in-laws and to my surprise everyone enjoyed it. My wife even tried and gave me that look, like I had just done something wrong. She normally doesn't like to eat anything with offal in it but this was good enough that she didn't mind. I always get a kick out making people change their minds about foods they normally wouldn't eat. I made a little onion marmalade to go with it and that really topped it off.

Buffalo Braunschweiger 

2.5 lbs. buffalo liver
2 lbs fresh pork belly
8 oz. pork fat back
4 oz. cured bacon
40 grams  kosher salt
2 tsp. Marjoram
5 grams  nutmeg
10 grams onion powder
10 grams garlic powder
3 grams ground allspice
5 grams finely ground white pepper
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp mustard powder
1/2 tsp rubbed sage
1 cup powdered milk

Prepare the liver by removing the membrane and slicing it about 1/2 inch thick and laying it in a deep 13x9 casserole dish. Bring 6 cups of water to a boil and pour the water over the liver slices. Stir the liver around to ensure that all surfaces of the liver are warmed by the water. Let the liver sit in the water for about 10 minutes. Pour off the hot water and run the liver under cold water until completely cooled and rinsed. Set the liver in a colander and let dry.

Prepare the rest of the pork by cutting it into small enough pieces for your grinder, then cut the liver into smaller piece for the grinder. Using a 2 mm plate feed the pork and the liver through the grinder. Mix all the dry ingredients together and add them to the ground mixture. Mix thoroughly and stuff into 1 1/2 inch clear fibrous casings. Tie the casings and then submerge the sausages in water that is 180 degrees and poach for about 2 hours or until the sausages reach 155 degrees on the inside.

Remove from the water and rinse under cool running water for ten minutes. Let the sausage sit until room temperature and the place in the fridge. If you want to add some smoke you can smoke these in a smoker with apple wood at 165 degrees for about 5 hours. I like the flavor the smoke adds and would highly recommend it.