My wife asked if I had ever had hot links before and if I could smoke them. Well, no, I never had them before (gasp!) but after she explained to me that they’re a type of sausage with a little bit of spice and then smoked I figured “how hard could this be?” and figured I’d give it a shot. I love spicy food, and combined with smoke, how could it not be good?
So off I went to Sam’s Club and Walmart to look for some sausage. The challenge in finding the right kind of sausage to use is that my wife suffers from Celiac disease so I have to be very careful when picking out packaged meats. Most prepackaged meats have fillers which contain gluten (a protein found in wheat, rye and barley) and she won’t be able to eat it! Not good, not good!! Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find anything that I felt comfortable enough to serve her. She knows how to read the labels way better than I do, and the last thing that I want to do is cause her to have a problem with something I cooked!
Frustrated, I went to a local butcher shop to see what was available, thinking surely they have to have fresh cuts of meat, and maybe they have something I can use that’s gluten free. There’s a place in town that’s been here for over a year now, and I have always heard great things about the place, and have even sampled some items that some friends have brought over to throw on the grill that was incredible, but I had never experienced the place on my own. Let me just say I wish I had went in sooner!!!
If you’re lucky enough to have a local butcher then you know what it’s like! G’s Meats ‘N More reminds me of the old style butcher shops from way back when, and the customer service is top-notch! I walked in, on a Friday afternoon, looking for something to make hot links out of. When I talked to the owner George and explained to him what I was trying to accomplish, he mentioned that he had some fresh ground jalapeño sausage in the back that he would be happy to put in the casing for me. I asked for two pounds and away I went!
I was already in the process of smoking two pork shoulders and decided to throw on the sausage as an appetizer. The only preparation I did to the sausage was sprinkling a little bit of chili powder on it. After that, on to the grate it went!
2 hours later, we sliced it up, and the reaction that my wife had made all of the searching I had done the day before worth it!! It was so good that she made me take a piece back to George, and I didn’t even hesitate because he had to know how good that stuff was! Thank you G’s Meats for making me look like a rock star!! You will definitely be getting more of my business, especially when we want some more smoked jalapeño sausage!