Apicius 2.4 Lucanicae

2.4    Lucanicae
 Lucanicus similiter ut supra scriptum est

Teritur piper cuminum satureia ruta petroselinu condimentum bacae lauri, liquamen,
 et admiscetur pulpa bene tunsa ita ut denuo bene cum ipso subtrito fricetur.
 Cum liquamine admixto, pipere integro et abundanti pinguedine et nucleis inicies 
in intestinum perquam tenuatim productum, et sic ad fumum suspenditur. 

Lucanicae are made in a similar way to that written above (refers to 2.3.1, same page)
 Pound pepper with cumin, savory, rue, parsley, bay berries, (spice) and liquamen.  
Add meat which has been thoroughly pounded so that it can then be blended well with the spice mix. 
Stir in the liquameen, whole peppercorns, plenty of fat and pine nuts. Put the meat in the skins, 
draw them quite thinly, and hang them in smoke.

 Smoked sausage? What's not to love?
This is for a fresh-style sausage for immediate use.  

 Well, there are some challenges here.

 What is "condimentum"?
 I read a lot of the book, and the three seasonings that keep coming up are black pepper,
 liquamen, salt, and honey. Pepper and liquamen are explicitly mentioned here,
 but there could not be enough liquamen to season the quantity of meat. In order to properly salt the meat, 
there would have to be enough liquamen to make soup. I opted to use the “condimenti” note to add salt.
 The one I thought about, considered, and rejected, was honey. If the sausage had tasted unbalanced, 
I would have added it.

  Another challenge was the bay laurel berries. I consulted with the herbalist, trying to figure out 
how to approach the problem.
 She did some research, informing me that the flavor of the berries is listed as similar to that of the leaves, 
and that I could make an infused oil in order to extract and disperse the flavor neatly. 
I could also purchase an essential oil, but the flavor value would be uncontrollable in the proportions called for.

 I did some shopping at various ethnic markets, and found ground bay leaves to be used as a spice at a Polish market.
This is what I opted to use, taking the hint and grinding my own in order to have an organic mass rather than adding
 an oil to the product. Since then, we have also sourced the actual berries, and will be able to confirm the 
flavor comparison soon.

 Not having Rue in stock, I skipped it. I also passed on the whole peppercorns and pine nuts;
 although I have them, we discussed and opted to pass for our home usage. 
The whole peppercorns can be an unwelcome dental surprise, and we both find the flavor of pine nuts unappealing.

 I purchased custom-ground meat, laid out the seasonings, and assembled the sausage. 
 After allowing the seasoned meat to sit in the fridge overnight, I fried up a small amount, 
adjusted the salt, remixed, and began stuffing sausages.

 (a note; you don't need the fancy sausage thingy, a funnel works, a carefully cut beer bottle neck works,
 a sense of humor works)

 After stuffing, I used a stovetop smoker. It can work well, but in this case it just made the sausage steam itself. 
This was an issue I could have solved, but opted not to, as I did not wish to smoke us out of the house.
 If I had opened the lid to release steam, I would have also released smoke, effectively stopping my ability to cook.
 I opted for a short-term smoking. The goal, based on my experience with similar sausage types, was a half hour.

 A question to consider is the type of smoke. What woods would have been used in a Roman smokehouse? 
Oak (European, not the same) is available, fruitwoods are as well, chestnut is a part of the local ecosystem, 
 perhaps grape could be an option as well. I did some digging to try to find out what woods are used in similar
 sausage smoking in Lucania now, but no solid answers yet. Mesquite, hickory, and some modernly common others
 are not European, and some woods just taste less good than others.

 I opted to use cherry, as I had it to hand and it is not as assertive as the others which were available.
 I will use apple or grape next time if possible.

  Now I had the spices and the flavors in place, and it was time to go.
With a stove top smoker, a sausage stuffer, and a dishwasher, I had the equivalent of eight kitchen servants.

11.5 lbs ground pork, ground, heavy on the fat.
11 tsp ground bay leaves, sieved
11 tsp winter savory
¼1/4 tsp black pepper, ground
½1/2 tsp cumin seed, ground
11 tbs fresh parsley, minced
11 tbs salt
11 fl oz fish sauce

 an ounce of whole peppercorns soaked in wine or liquamen overnight and three ounces of toasted Italian pine 
nuts would have been added had we a taste for them.

One 5' length of thin sausage casing, soaked, inspected, and with water run through the length.

A half cup or so of smoking wood, in water, in the fridge. I put it in a zip bag and keep it in the fridge,
 if longer than a day, I toss it in the freezer.


 Toss the seasonings together, pour the garum over them. Fold the meat together with the seasonings, blend completely.
 Place in a container, chill for about 20-30 minutes.
Fry a sample to taste, in order to be certain of seasonings. Adjust if needed.
 Allow to sit overnight in the fridge.

 Prepare your sausage stuffing method (pastry bag, appliance, funnel, whatever it takes)
 Fold in the peppercorns and pine nuts if you are using them.
 Stuff the sausages.
  The instructions call for them to be “stretched thin.” I used a thin casing, and considered flattening them, 
but the size of my equipment suggested I keep them as they naturally appeared.

 Prep your smoking method (weber-type grill, offset smoker, dedicated outbuilding?)
and smoke the sausages for about 30 minutes. Much longer can make them acrid unless you are skilled with the task. 
Full kielbasa-grade smoking takes a bit different effort, and salumi-style drying smoke still more finesse.
  Though the purpose of the original is for portability, the difference is in the detail of the smoking.

 When they are done with smoking, they are usually not completely cooked. 
Grill or fry them to completion. 

 I like to make them in a coil, though smaller sausages, hot-dog sized links, or what-you-will would all be perfectly nice.

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