Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Per directions?

When you buy Italian sausage to put into red sauce for pasta, it's going to simmer gently all afternoon, so you can feel confident that it will be cooked through by dinnertime.  But sometimes you just want to slap that sausage onto a plate as soon as you can, and it might be helpful to know how long that should take.

No such luck with this package.  On the front, not a hint.  On the back, a recipe that calls for the sausage to be cooked (so I infer that it isn't cooked already), and helpfully directs you to cook it "per directions" -- which are nowhere to be found.

I grew up in the days when pork had to be cooked a long time, and I have always been hypersensitive to that issue because when I was a kid, some people we knew became extremely ill with trichinosis, not even from eating pork, but from eating hamburger; the butcher had put their beef through the grinder without cleaning it properly after some pork.  

According to the CDC, trichinosis has been almost wiped out, because pigs no longer eat raw meat scraps (that's now illegal), but you do have to cook pork to kill salmonella and E. coli bacteria.  And how long might that take for your Italian sausage?  The Johnsonville people are no help.

Thanks a lot.  Don't worry if you come to eat at my house, because I always cook pork forever, but some people may regret the lack of info.

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