What would life without sausage be like? Healthier, but less exciting perhaps. In recent years the artisan craft of sausage making has gained momentum (and popularity among consumers), on farms, in kitchens and in butcher shops. As a main attraction, sausage can stand on its own at breakfast, lunch and dinner, but is also an essential background ingredient in hearty soups, stews and rice dishes. Lentil and Sausage Soup, Jambalaya and Paella are a few of my favorite sausage based recipes. At farmers markets and grocery stores, sausage is sold loose (without a casing and resembling ground meat), or in link form (in casings, which are usually lamb or artificial).
In the Hudson Valley and Saratoga regions here are a few of my favorite sources for raw and cooked sausage products:
Eagle Bridge Custom Meat & Smokehouse
139 Center Road
Eagle Bridge, NY 12057
Eagle Bridge is known for high quality smoked and cured pork products. They sell retail from their store in Eagle Bridge and at the Cohoes Farmers Market on Fridays. Favorite sausage flavor – Maple breakfast sausage. Kielbasi is a close second.
Bornt Family Farms
275 Logwoods Road
Troy, NY 12180
Gerry Bornt is a fourth generation farmer who has been naturally raising pastured pork for decades. He sells raw and smoked pork products at the Troy Farmers Market on Saturdays. Favorite sausage flavor – Andouille
Fleishers Grass-Fed and Organic Meats
307 Wall Street
Fleisher’s is a full service butcher shop that carries local meats, cheeses, milled flour, and dairy products. Fleisher’s produces a delux line of great tasting sausages. favorite flavor – Rockin Moroccan lamb sausage. Try their Landjager as well.
10 Cochrane Road
Durham, NY 12422
Frank Hull is a seventh generation beef and meat farmer. Specialties include dried aged beef, smoked pheasant, and a full line of cured meats and sausages. Favorite sausage flavor – pork breakfast sausage
Mariaville Angus Farm
2978 Duansburg Churches Road
Delanson, NY 12053
As one of the original members of the Vorheesville Farmers Market, Mariaville Angus Farm hooks market going customers with freshly cooked samples. Stand-outs include the Chorizo and the hot Italian sausage. Look for Mariaville at the Schenectady Farmers Market at the Proctor’s Theatre and at the Vorheesville Farmers Market.
Sweet Tree Farm
138 Karker Road, P.O. Box 88
Carlisle, NY 12031
Frank Johnson of Sweet Tree Farm is organically raising beef and pork, and smokes a variety of pork products including ham, bacon and a full line of sausages. He sells at the Troy Farmers Market on Saturdays. Favorite sausage flavor – Luau
Heather Ridge Farm
989 Broome Center Rd
Preston Hollow, NY 12469
Heather Ridge Farm produces an exceptional line of grass-fed pork, beef and chicken sausages. Pork flavors include Asiago Garlic Parsley, Honey Apple and Italian (sweet and hot). The Guinness Short Stouts are all beef. In the summer and fall look for chicken sausage flavors – Herbs de Provence and Country Breakfast. In years past, Times Union and local food writer Jennifer Gish rated the Asiago Garlic Parsley sausage “the best sausage ever”.
The smoked sausages of Oscar’s Smoked Meats in Warrensburg are avilable by mail order
Looking for healthy tasty and locally made chicken sausage? Look for Bilinski’s in Hannaford and Price Chopper locations throughout Albany and Saratoga