Saturday, February 15, 2014

Chicken-Apple Breakfast Sausage Patties

Snow bound but the power is still on.  On days like these, shovelers and snowblower drivers deserve a really good second breakfast when they make it to the end of the driveway and back.  Easy to make, homemade Chicken-Apple Breakfast Sausage Patties are the answer.  They are good on their own, next to some eggs or, my favorite, topping a piece of toast slathered with cream cheese.  (I earned my chicken sausage patty shoveling the back porch.)

This mixture, like all fresh sausage recipes, likes to sit overnight before forming patties and cooking but is fine to mix up before you head outside and cook up quickly after the snow moving work is over.  There are generally two types of chicken sausage – lean and regular. For these, I use regular which is a mixture of breast and thigh meat.  It yields a moist, rich flavor assisted by the grated apple and a light touch of maple syrup in the recipe.  You can use a lean ground chicken mixture for this as well. If so, add a little more apple tot he recipe to prevent it from getting dry when cooked. 

Chicken-Apple Breakfast Sausage Patties
Yield: 9-10 patties

1 pound ground chicken
½ peel and grated apple
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 tablespoon ground sage
1/2 teaspoon crushed fennel seed
¼ teaspoon paprika
¾ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper

To make sausage patties:
  1. In a medium bowl, mix all ingredients together.  Use a fork or your clean fingers to ensure spices are well distributed.  
  2. Test mixture for seasoning. Form a small meatball with a teaspoon and place in a small bowl or ramekin with a few teaspoons of water.  
  3. Microwave for 30 seconds to cook through.  Allow to cool before sampling.  Taste for sweet, salt and spice.  If you like your sausage spicier add more black pepper or a pinch of cayenne. Adjust with a light touch; herbs and spices will be more flavorful when they are fully absorbed into the meat after resting. 
  4. Cover bowl and refrigerate an hour or overnight.  
  5. Form small patties (about 2 inches across) and cook as directed below. 
To cook sausage patties:
  1. Lightly oil a skillet and heat to medium-high.  
  2. Place patties on skillet in tow batches.  Cook on first side 3 minutes.  
  3. Turn patties and cover pan.  Cook an additional 2 minutes and check temperature (should read at least 165˚F) and have no trace of pink.  
  4. Remove patties to a paper towel lined plate and cook remaining patties in the same manner. 
Did I say the snow clearing is over?  I meant we are resting.  Good thing there are more chicken sausages.  Five more inches expected today.  Chicken-Apple Breakfast Sausage Patties freeze well for the next storm and reheat easily in the microwave (no need to defrost).  If it ever stops snowing, this is pure quick breakfast component.  Store cooked patties in the freezer.  Microwave and wrap in a roll or tortilla before heading out the door.