Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Smoked Chicken and Roasted Garlic Sausage (with bonus STX Turboforce grinder review)

Okay, this is ostensibly a post about making Smoked Chicken and Roasted Garlic Sausage for the May Charcutepalooza challenge.  But I've been stuffing and smoking meat for a while now and I don't have much more to say about it.  I used the recipe from Charcuterie, for the sausage and once again it turned out pretty darned good.  I used it in a gumbo one night, but it so reminded me of the sausages at Top Dog in Berkeley that I decided to just grill it up and eat it on a roll like they do there.  Pretty darned tasty...

"STX TURBOFORCE 3000 SERIES - 1800 WATT" 2.4 HP RATED ELECTRIC MEAT GRINDER - 3 HARDENED STEEL CUTTING BLADES - SAUSAGE STUFFING TUBES!!!The real news is my new meat grinder.  I've been using it for the past couple of months and I really like it.  I was using the sausage grinding attachment for my Kitchenaid Mixer, but I wasn't very happy with it.  I usually only grind about 5 pounds of meat at a time, but the Kitchenaid struggled to keep up with even this limited amount.  Commercial grinders were much too expensive, but then I found the STX Turboforce grinder.  This is not even close to a commercial grinder.  In some ways it seems less substantial than the Kitchenaid attachment.  But it has #10 grinding plates (see note below), a large hopper for the meat, and all the grinding parts are made of metal (aluminum for all but the grinding plates and cutting blade).

Put into use, the motor slows a bit when under the load of grinding meat.  But it never stalls, doesn't seem to heat up, and grinds the meat much faster than the Kitchenaid.  I don't hesitate if I have a recipe that calls for grinding.  I just throw all the parts in the freezer for a few minutes then grind away.

I highly recommend the STX Turboforce for anyone who wants to upgrade their grinder from a Kitchenaid but doesn't want to pay for a commercial grinder.

Note: My grinder shipped with 3 carbon steel grinding plates and 2 stainless steel cutting blades.  The holes for two the grinding plates measure 5/32", 9/32".  The third plate has pie slice shaped holes for course grinding.  The two grinding plates for my Kitchenaid measure 3/16"and 1/4".  I don't notice much difference between the course plates, but the 5/32" produces a noticeably finer grind than the Kitchenaid 1/4"plate.  This works for sausages like bangers or the Smoked Chicken and Roasted Garlic Sausage, but I would suggest ordering 1/4" and 3/8" #10 plates from or

The stainless steel blades for the STX were a bit dull out of the box.  I touched up the edges with a diamond stone before grinding.

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