Before opening Duck Duck Goat, Gary and I headed to China with some fellow goats for two weeks in search of inspiration. The highlight for us was the Szechuan province, known for its crazy bold flavors, where we ate just about every noodle and dumpling that crossed our path. I particularly love Szechuan peppercorns, which are like fun little spice bombs—but instead of packing a ton of heat, they make your mouth go all tingly and numb. That’s what inspired this spicy sausage blend, which we usually make with goat meat, but it’s just as good with pork. Yes, you can buy a spicy Italian sausage from the store, but I strongly urge you to consider making your own instead. It’s super-easy to do (not scary) and you can use the leftovers to make a round of “This Little Piggy Went to China” breakfast sandwiches.
- Whisk together all the ingredients and store covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.
- Whisk together all the ingredients. The sauce will keep, covered in the fridge, for up to 1 week.
- In a food processor, combine the meat, shallot, garlic, ginger, salt, red pepper flakes, and peppercorns. Pulse until well combined. Turn the machine on and drizzle in 1 tablespoon of ice water and the rice wine until well mixed and the meat is emulsified. Transfer to the fridge to chill for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days before cooking.
- Soak 24 bamboo skewers in cold water for 1 hour to help prevent scorching.
- Scoop the cold sausage into 24 portions. Form each into a 2-inchlong cylinder around the tip of a drained bamboo skewer. Return to the fridge for at least 1 hour before cooking. The sausage will hold its shape and grill up better if chilled.
- Heat a grill to medium-high heat.
- Arrange the sausage skewers around the outside of the grill, so the sticks are over the edge and do not burn. (If the grill grates are hot enough, the cooked meat will release cleanly without the need for oil; otherwise, lightly brush the grates with canola oil before placing the skewers on them.) Allow the meat to cook thoroughly before you attempt to move it; otherwise it will stick.
- Sear the first side for at least 6 minutes, then turn and cook again for 6 to 7 more minutes, until both sides have a dark crust.
- To serve, schmear a thick strip of mint yogurt sauce down one side of a platter. Put the meat end of each skewer in the yogurt. Drizzle with the chile sauce, and garnish with the mint. Serve hot.
Reprinted with permission from Gather & Graze copyright © 2018 by Stephanie Izard. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.