A Long, Long, Longanisa Story

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UPDATE 06/09/09:
See my new and improved recipe for Homemade Longanisa.
Below is my original post on longanisa.
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Sausage is as near a universal food as you can get.  Of course, France, Italy, and Germany all have their own unique sausage incarnates, but so does China, Mexico, Spain, the good ‘ol USA, and countless other cultures.  But, seeing as I’m Filipino, and this is a Filipino Food Blog, I must mention with pride that most distinct Filipino sausage redolent of black pepper, vinegar, and garlic: Longanisa.

Although I’ve only somewhat recently come to appreciate the vinegary virtues of Longanisa, there was a time in my life when I avoided this sausage at all costs.  One hot, San Fernando Valley summer when I was a wee little boy, my dad sweated away in our little kitchen making homemade Longanisa.  I remember him squishing fatty pork chunks through his old school hand-cranked meat grinder, and then stuffing this slippery mess into lengths and lengths of pig intestines.  While this scenario may be old-hat to grizzled sausage-making veterans, it was a bit disturbing to me as a little kid, what with all the grease and pig guts.  Quite simply, I was grossed out.

This isn’t to say I avoided all sausage consumption. Oh no. I ate my fair share of hot dogs as a kid.  But every time I saw Longanisa on our dinner table, I remembered pig guts and my dad’s greazy meat grinder—memories strong enough to prevent me from enjoying a truly delicious Filipino specialty.

Years later, after reading “The Jungle” in high school, I figured that there were worse things that could end up in sausage besides grease and pig guts.  And last I checked, my father had all 10 digits in tact.  As such, my aversion to Longanisa slowly gave way, link by garlicky link. 

I started eating the Longanisa my mother would sometimes bring home from the Asian market.  These store-bought links were fairly decent, if not overly sweet and filled with preservatives, food coloring, and who knows what else.  But nothing compared to the gold-standard of Longanisas in my family—those made by my grandmother’s sister.  Yup, my great aunt twists a mean Longanisa link—chopping her pork and stuffing her casings all by hand.  My great aunt’s homemade Longanisa, I slowly learned, was the best sausage I’ve tasted—grease, pig guts, and all.

Even more years later, after reading Michael Ruhlman and Brian Polcyn’s Charcuterie and after returning from a charcuterie and salumi-filled vacation in Europe, I learned that grease and pig parts are to be revered rather than feared. It also helped that the Filipino love of pork that was hardwired into my brain eventually made itself more dominant.

So, a few weeks ago, I decided I’d try my hand at homemade Longanisa, using Charcuterie as a guide.  Although Charcuterie was written by non-Filipinos, I wanted to use it as a guideline for making Filipino sausage because it’s a great cookbook with sound sausage-making advice regardless of who wrote it.  While there is no Longanisa recipe in Charcuterie, Ruhlman and Polcyn have a great “master ratio” for a standard sausage that consists of 5 pounds of pork and fat, 1.5 ounces of kosher salt, seasonings, and 1 cup of ice-cold liquid.  Armed with this master ratio, and my Pinoy tastebuds, I went about creating my own recipe for homemade Filipino Longanisa.

[Sausage-making is a long process that is well worth the effort.  And if you couldn’t already tell from the title of this entry, this will be a long post that is (hopefully) well worth reading.]

Ingredients-wise, Longanisa is a very straightforward and simple sausage.  There may be some variables between the different sausages in the different regions of the Philippines, but Longanisa usually contains pork (of course), salt, black pepper, vinegar, and garlic.  The latter two ingredients in that list are what makes or breaks Longanisa.  For those who have never had this Filipino sausage, it sometimes verges on being a vinegar and garlic sausage laced with pork, rather than the other way around.  And that’s not necessarily a bad thing if it’s done right.  But for my sausage, I wanted the porcine to be the protagonist.

For my purposes, I cut Ruhlman’s master ratio in half since I knew five pounds of sausage would last my wife and I for five years.  Also, pork butt is the cut of meat to use for most sausages since it contains a near-perfect amount of meat and fat.  So I started with 2.5 pounds of the fattiest and most high-quality boneless pork butt I could find:

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A beaut that pork butt is, no?  It’s an all-natural organic pork shoulder (pork shoulder and pork butt are the exact same cut of meat) from Whole Foods.  After purchasing your pork, it will go through what I call the “Four Stages of Chill”: Seasoning and Chilling, Grinding and Chilling, Stuffing and Chilling, and finally Cooking, Eating, and Chillin’ Out.

What’s with all the chilling and/or chillin’ you ask?  Like Andre 3000 once posited, “What’s cooler than being cool?  Ice Cold!”  So, keeping your pork cold is perhaps THE most important aspect of sausage making.  Chilling the pork helps to keep the fat solid; if the fat melts, the finished sausage will end up being dry and bland and then you will weep and curse the heavens.  Keep the fat cold at all costs!  Ice Cold!

Whenever you are done prepping the pork in one of my aforementioned stages, stash it in the fridge to chill out.  You should also be sure to stash in the fridge any other implements that will be touching the pork during grinding as well.  So if you are using a KitchenAid, as I did, you should place your mixer bowl, the grinder attachments, and the paddle attachment in the fridge.  Don’t worry, this will all make more sense as we go along (I hope).

Seasoning and Chilling
I started by cutting the pork butt into pieces that were small enough to fit into the feeder tube of the meat grinder attachment of my KitchenAid stand mixer.  Yes, hand chopping your pork gives way to the best, and most traditional, texture for Longanisa.  But if you are like me and have little patience and time, a meat grinder makes sausage-making that much easier and enjoyable.

After cubing the pork, I then seasoned it with 0.75 ounces (about 1.5 tablespoons) of kosher salt to stay in line with Ruhlman’s ratio.  After that, I was on my own as far as the rest of the seasonings went.  So I dumped in some freshly ground black pepper, some red pepper flakes, and some finely diced garlic.  I mixed the meat and seasonings together in a big bowl and let it sit in the fridge overnight so that the flavors would meld and the pork would chill (Ice Cold!).

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If you’re keeping score at home, so far I have the pork, salt, and seasonings from Ruhlman’s master ratio.  All that is missing is the ice-cold liquid.  Ruhlman uses ice-cold red wine for a lot of his sausage recipes because red wine not only provides another flavor, but since it is cold when mixed in with the meat the red wine also helps to keep the fat from melting.  Instead of red wine, I chilled some beer and some cane vinegar overnight in the fridge.  I kept the beer and vinegar in separate containers from the pork and seasonings.  They were to be mixed together the next day after grinding.

Grinding and Chilling
After a night in the refrigerator, the pork was ready to be ground.  Following Ruhlman’s suggestion in Charcuterie, I ground the pork using the small die of my meat grinder rather than the large die.  Remember, all of the grinder parts should have also been chilled in the fridge, and you should use a chilled mixer bowl set in a larger bowl of ice to catch the ground meat:

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After all of the seasoned pork has been ground into the cold mixer bowl, place the mixer bowl onto the base of your stand mixer and mix the ground meat for 1 minute using your chilled paddle attachment.  While the meat is mixing, pour in the chilled beer and vinegar:

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Mixing the meat and liquids together helps to ensure that all of the seasonings and flavors are evenly distributed.  It is at this point where you should check that these seasonings and flavors are to your liking.  After mixing the meat and liquids for one minute, make yourself a small patty of this sausage mixture and fry it in a skillet until the patty is cooked through (you should return the rest of the meat mixture to the refrigerator while you do this). 

Taste the patty.  Does it taste good?  Does it need more salt, more pepper, more garlic?  For me, I found that there wasn’t enough of a vinegar flavor—the cane vinegar just wasn’t providing enough bite.  So I added cider vinegar to the meat mixture, mixed for another minute, and made another patty to taste.  This time it was closer to the vinegary flavor of Longanisa I was looking for.  If you skip this taste-testing step, you will possibly stuff your sausage casings with underseasoned meat and end up with a whole batch of sausage that won’t taste as good as you’d like.

The flavor of beer is probably negligible in the final cooked product, but I put it in my recipe because there’s nothing cooler than telling someone “There’s beer in that there homemade sausage!”  It’s true.  The mere mention of beer makes any homemade product that much better.  For instance: “There’s beer in that marinade!” or “There’s beer in that sauce!” and “There’s beer in that ice cream!”  Well, OK, it probably doesn’t work for everything, but you get the point.

After finding the right balance of flavor for the meat mixture, it was time for another chill session.  I put the mixer bowl of the seasoned ground meat in the refrigerator for another hour.  This hour in the fridge helped to ensure the meat stayed cold after the beating it took from the mixer.

Stuffing and Chilling
Ok, this was the step I feared the most: working with the sausage casings.  Although you can buy synthetic casings made from collagen, I wanted to use the real thing: hog casings that are the linings of a pig’s small intestines.  Yummy!  I found my hog casings at Claro’s Italian Market, but if you don’t live in SoCal there are numerous places on the web from where you can order hog casings.

The hog casings I used came packed in salt, so I soaked them overnight in water, changed the water in the morning and soaked for another hour, then rinsed the insides out by running the tap through the end of the casing.  Although the memories of my father and pig guts ran through my mind, working with these casings was not as gross (or even as difficult) as I thought it would be.

After ensuring that my sausage casings were well rinsed and free of any salt, I was ready for stuffing.

I placed the stuffing attachment onto my mixer and fed the ground meat into the stuffing attachment just until it peeked out of the end:

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After the ground meat was in the stuffer, I placed the entire length of hog casing over the stuffing tube, leaving a couple of inches at the end.  I tied this end with kitchen twine and poked a tiny hole through the casing with a pin (this lets the meat flow into the casing more easily). I then turned on my mixer at medium speed and stuffed away.

Notice that I placed my stand mixer on a lower plane than my work surface so that there was less stress on the sausage casing (I didn’t want it dangling above my counter):

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Once all of the ground pork was stuffed into casings, I tied off the open ends with kitchen twine:

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Now the fun part began—twisting off individual Longanisa links.  You can use a ruler to measure off exact lengths of Longanisa, but I just used the width of my palm to measure.  Once you find the desired link length, pinch the sausage and twist to form a link and then tie off each link with more twine:

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Once you have your links tied off, poke any air pockets in the sausage with a pin.  Then, wrap the Longanisa in foil, place in a zip-top bag and return it to the refrigerator to chill until you are ready to cook.  Ruhlman says freshly made sausage will last a week in the fridge, or up to 3 months in the freezer, so keep that in mind for long-term storage.

Cooking, Eating, and Chillin’ Out
The hard part is done folks.  But trust me, the few hours spent in the kitchen making your own homemade sausage is well worth the effort.  That is, unless you end up overcooking your sausage.

I triumphantly brought some of my freshly made Longanisa over to my parents’ house so that they would heap praises upon me and declare me as their favorite son to the whole family.  Unfortunately, all was lost once my father got his tongs on my links.

My dad grilled the sausages over the grates of Hell, wringing out every ounce of juice and fat as he tortured my links over direct high heat for at least 20 minutes:

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With each sizzle and spit over the hot coals, I knew my sausages were dying a slow death at the hands of my father.  I just didn’t say anything because you can’t tell a man his business at his own grill—especially my father.  Had I said anything to him he would have ripped my heart out with his tongs, or at the very least punched me in the throat.

When the merciless burning was done, my sausages were rendered into something resembling Satan’s poo:

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Although burnt to a crisp, all was not lost.  My parents said that the flavor was darn close to my great-aunt’s Longanisa, but the texture wasn’t right and it just lacked the fat needed to make it juicy.    I agreed with them about the flavor and texture, but I quietly nodded my head and kept my mouth shut about all the fat being lost to the fire.  Fortunately, I still had more sausages waiting in my fridge for me to cook my way.

In Charcuterie, Ruhlman recommends cooking freshly made pork sausage until it reaches an internal temperature of 150-degrees Fahrenheit.  Luckily, I am the proud owner of an instant-read thermometer and a probe thermometer (Nerd!), so hitting that 150-degree mark was easy for me whether I was grilling, sautéing, or broiling my Longanisa.  And yes, I did cook my Longanisa in all those various ways.

Despite the incident on my dad’s barbecue, I must say, grilling was definitely my favorite way of cooking Longanisa.  I first browned the Longanisa over direct heat on my grill for about 3-5 minutes a side.  I then placed my probe thermometer into one of the links and moved the sausage to a cooler part of the grill and cooked over indirect heat until I hit the 150-degree mark.

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Ruhlman is right on with the cooking temperature as the sausage was fully cooked but still juicy, fatty, and delicious.  If you don’t have a thermometer, it’ll take some practice cooking the perfect Longanisa.  But if you first get some color on the casings, then continue to cook very slowly over very low heat, you will be rewarded with juicy sausage.

After my first batch of sausages was consumed, I actually made another batch the following weekend, tinkering a bit more with my recipe.  Instead of using cane vinegar as I originally did, I used all cider vinegar for my second batch.  I also upped the amount of garlic and used the large die on the meat grinder rather than the small die I used before.  I found the coarser grind of meat made for a better Longanisa as it was closer to hand-chopped.

The recipe I provide below is all my own, but all of the sausage-making techniques I used came from Charcuterie. I can’t recommend that book highly enough.  In addition to having a number of recipes for sausages and other preparations for cured and smoked meats, it provides a great baseline from which you can create your own unique sausages.

While my Longanisa will never match that of my great aunt’s, it was perhaps one of the most satisfying experiences I’ve had in the kitchen, maybe even in life.  I made my own sausage for cryin’ out loud!  Two weekends in a row!  Despite my childhood fears of grease and pig guts, I’ve learned that there is nothing better than making your own Longanisa from scratch, cooking it, and then eating it with some tomatoes and steamed white rice while chillin’ out with a cold beer (Ice Cold!).

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Homemade Longanisa (Filipino Sausage)
Yield: About 18-20 sausage links

2.5 lbs. boneless pork butt (make sure it is well-marbled with fat), cut into small cubes
0.75 oz. (about 1.5 tablespoons) kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
10 large cloves of garlic, finely diced
¼ cup chilled beer
½ cup chilled cider vinegar
Hog casings, soaked overnight in water and then rinsed well.

Combine the cubed pork, salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes, and garlic in a large bowl.  Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Using a meat grinder attachment and stand mixer, coarsely grind the chilled pork mixture into a chilled bowl set within a larger bowl of ice.  Using the paddle attachment of the stand mixer, mix the ground pork while pouring in the chilled beer and vinegar.  Continue to mix for one minute.

Form a small patty from the sausage mixture and fry the patty in a bit of oil until cooked throughout.  Taste the cooked patty for seasoning.  Add additional seasoning to sausage mixture if needed, and mix again for another minute.  Cover and return the sausage mixture to the refrigerator and chill for one hour.

After fitting a sausage stuffer attachment to the stand mixer, feed the sausage stuffer with the sausage mixture just until the meat appears at the end of the stuffing tube.  Place a length of rinsed hog casing over the stuffing tube, leaving a few inches extra. Tie the end of the hog casing with kitchen twine and poke a small hole in the end with a clean pin.

Turn the mixer on medium speed, and stuff the casing with all of the meat mixture.  Tie off the open ends of the casing with more kitchen twine.  Using the width of your palm, measure off individual links by pinching the sausage, twisting links, and then tying the links with kitchen twine.

Cut off individual links as needed and cook until the sausage reaches an internal temperature of 150-degrees.

Although Longanisa can be enjoyed any time of day, it is usually eaten for breakfast in the Philippines, along with fried rice, tomatoes, and a fried egg:

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  • The Diesel July 17, 2007, 9:31 pm

    I too remember when father sweated in the kitchen when making Longanisa. Not only was I distressed at how those links were made, but do you remember when he would place them on a metal hanger to dry out in the hot San Fernando, level 1 smog alert, summer? I’m no foodie, but what he curing the meat?

    Reply
  • waya July 18, 2007, 2:49 am

    greetings from manila! i found your blog through tastespotting.
    it’s fun reading about someone discovering/re-discovering dishes i’ve sort of taken for granted all of my life.
    ive been recently trying to get together recipes from both sides of my family, and you just gave me a wonderful idea. i think i’ll attempt to blog the recipes, instead of just setting them down on paper. that way my relatives from the states can participate as well! (i have some opinionated titas who would probably have different memories of each dish) :)
    keep cooking and writing!!! and love the fork and spoon!!!

    Reply
  • Wandering Chopsticks July 18, 2007, 9:00 am

    You’re killing me here Marvin! Another long post and I read through all of it. But you made sausages two weekends in a row and didn’t invite me? Hmph!
    Great photos. I thought I’d be icked out by your initial description but I got hungry instead. Should you try twisting the casing as you’re stuffing the sausage? I’m afraid tying it off afterward would pop it.
    Oh, and my friend tried a Guinness tiramisu flavor at Scoops and she said it was delicious. So yes to beer and ice cream!

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  • elmomonster July 18, 2007, 10:49 am

    I enjoyed this post immensely. Humor, useful info, perfect post! You got some cojones and talent to do this…but then I’m a wimp who buys his longanisa.

    Reply
  • Steve July 19, 2007, 11:15 am

    Longanisa! I spent four years stationed in the Philippines and those little sausages are my second favorite Filipino food, close behind sisig baboy.
    I’ll have to try out this recipe as soon as I get a sausage stuffer attachment for my KitchenAid.
    Thanks!

    Reply
  • Burnt Lumpia July 19, 2007, 8:30 pm

    Diesel, yes I do remember dad’s wire hanger/pantyhose contraption that was meant to hang the Longanisa while keeping the flies away. And yes, he was trying to cure them.
    waya, I’m glad you’re having fun reading my ramblings. And blogging is definitely a good way to log your recipes.
    Dub C, I couldn’t help but write a long post about this! Thanks for reading. And don’t worry about the sausage casings popping, they are very resilient.
    Elmo, thanks for the kind words. It took a while to make the Longanisa, but it’s definitely worth a try at least once if you buy and eat Longanisa fairly often.
    Steve, if you’re planning on making any kind of sausage, and if you already have a kitchenaid, the meat grinder and sausage stuffer attachments are a good investment.

    Reply
  • Janice July 21, 2007, 12:22 am

    mmm…longanisa. it’s sad to say, i’ve never had the homemade kind…my mom buys it. tsk tsk.

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  • WengN July 23, 2007, 3:21 pm

    Wowwww – homemade longanisa!!! I thought I’d just say – you are one patient man! :) Congrats – the pictures are so awesome, am so hungry now! :)
    A Pinay from Calgary, AB (Canada)

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  • Burnt Lumpia July 23, 2007, 9:39 pm

    Janice, there are many store-bought Longanisas that are pretty good, so don’t fret too much;)
    Welcome WengN! A Pinay in Canada? Psssst, eh? Sorry, terrible joke;) Thanks for your comment.

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  • WengN July 23, 2007, 9:50 pm

    *laughs* on the ‘eh’!!! 😉 too funny!

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  • toni July 24, 2007, 11:02 pm

    Oh my, that IS a long, long process. Good thing you have the patience for such! Even with a meat grinder, the cooking seems to take a long time. I’ve come to have a better appreciation of the longganisa on my plate now!

    Reply
  • Mila July 26, 2007, 12:55 am

    In a lot of turo-turo places around the Pinas, the tendency is to burn those links till they’re salty crackly carbon forms. So I might just enjoy how your dad cooked your links to death.
    Have you tried panboiling the links in a bit of water, then frying it up after the most of the water has evaporated? Might give you that caramel flavor without losing all that unctuous love of oil and fat. Then you can cook your garlic rice in that! Cholesterol heaven!

    Reply
  • Burnt Lumpia July 26, 2007, 8:02 am

    Hi Toni. Yes, it was a long process to make the Longanisa, but keep in mind that that was my very first time making them, and I was very particular about keeping everything cold. I’m sure my auntie would laugh at how slow I was;)
    Mila, I did cook them with water like you described and I got good results. But I didn’t think to fry my rice in the leftover fat in the pan. That is a great idea!

    Reply
  • joey July 27, 2007, 3:12 am

    OMG! Idol! I have no words and you have rendered me speechless with admiration! I love longanisa and if I ever made my own I would probably be so pleased with myself that I would pass out! I hope to do this one day…until then…100 thumbs up to you!!! :)

    Reply
  • Lyra August 1, 2007, 8:48 am

    Actually, in the caribbean, specifically Jamaica, beer ice cream is quite popular-just ask any Jamaican about Guinness ice cream and they will tell you:)

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  • Burnt Lumpia August 1, 2007, 9:14 am

    Thanks Joey! I must admit, making my own homemade Longanisa was very gratifying.
    Lyra, I must find some beer ice cream now! I had no idea.

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  • Mita August 2, 2007, 6:29 pm

    OMG…you actually MADE your own longganisa?? AMAZING. You’ve just inspired me to take out the kitchen aid attachments and see what can be churned out of it…

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  • vhinna August 12, 2007, 5:35 pm

    ill try ur longanisa recipe and talagang cacareeron ko na to.ill open a meat shop nxt month and ill make ur longanisa one of our specialty,tnx!

    Reply
  • Burnt Lumpia August 13, 2007, 8:32 pm

    Mita, I’m glad I’ve given you inspiration.
    vhinna, I’m cool with that, but at least name the longanisa after me;)

    Reply
  • Just a Plane Ride Away September 18, 2007, 12:43 pm

    Oh my gosh! I am in awe. My mother and I made some longanisa in May–her recipe. We formed each sausage by hand and lovingly wrapped each one in pastic wrap. I may have to try the casing, however.
    Beautiful blog–thanks for sharing all of your culinary adventures.

    Reply
  • ria November 9, 2007, 5:52 am

    i’ve lusting over a KA meat grinder attachment eversince i saw your longganisa post….i live in scandinavia and if there is something i truly miss, it’s longganisa…….
    the only store that sells KA in the little city where i live in is closing and had a closing sale…got the attachment, faster than a speeding bullet
    have to order casings and pork from the butcher and i’m off to try your recipe…thanks a lot for posting this!!

    Reply
  • nady December 17, 2007, 7:30 pm

    Do you know where to buy longanisa casing in the philippines wholesale? I have a small canteen and I need it for my continues cooking of longanisa.
    Thank you very much.

    Reply
  • Babee March 24, 2008, 5:52 pm

    Sorry to say but your dad’s version over the grill looks better to me… love crispy near-burnt sausages! yum.

    Reply
  • Maricel March 24, 2008, 7:43 pm

    Wonderful post! We like our longanisa parboiled then fried over low flame until the casing is browned and crisp. We find that the slow frying removes the “malansa” taste.

    Reply
  • gi-gutom-nga-raqi March 25, 2008, 3:22 pm

    This is very informational and you are a great writer.. you got me to read the long long story…now i have to get a kitchen aid and the rest..and i like burnt longaniza and chorizo!!! so, kudos to your Dad!

    Reply
  • quiapo March 25, 2008, 5:54 pm

    Nice one!! Bought longanisa tneds to be too sweet for my taste, and in Manila there was one place in Quiapo market which had it just right,and withminimal fat (they ground the fat with the meat). I think it was called “Julia’s”. Now that I am overseas I can try longanisa custom made to my taste. By the way, I often cook sausages when I bil rice, inserting them at different stages of the process according to the sausage type. Chinese chorizo which is dense and dry I put when the rice starts to boil; it leaves a nice flavor to the rice, and is so nice with raw onions later. Other sausages such as hot dogs I put at the “inin” right near the end, and they are gently steamed to suculence.
    Congrats on a terrific page.
    Quiapo
    Newcastle, Austrlaia

    Reply
  • jostarjr April 6, 2008, 10:26 am

    Fantastic post. Very well illustrated and informative. I am from Nueva Ecija and I am sure this is the recipe for the unsweetened longanisa variety that I am so nostalgic about. I can’t wait to try it.
    I will let you know how I made out.
    Thanks

    Reply
  • joe May 27, 2008, 12:29 pm

    excellent blog! i love longanisa and have been wanting to make it for a long time. my late mother use to make it fresh.

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  • josh! September 20, 2008, 9:24 pm

    It took me over a year, but I finally got around the making my own longanisa using your recipe. It makes an excellent sausage, but I made some modification I thought I’d share.
    First, I added about 1/2 a pound of fat back so it’ll stay juicy on the grill.
    Second, instead of beating the meat with the paddle attachment, which would make an emulsified sausage, I just sent it through the grinder using the large die, then mixed in the liquid by hand, not over working the meat. This made a coarser sausage, which is closer to the longanisa the fiance’s Mom makes for us :)
    I actually think the longanisa I’m used to is even coarser, so maybe next time i’ll try chopping the meat in a food processor instead of a meat grinder.
    Thanks again for the recipe, it’s excellent.

    Reply
  • mr nonesense March 13, 2009, 4:04 pm

    wow. everything i need to know about my favorite pinoy breakfast. thanks.

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  • rabies warrior April 25, 2009, 6:09 am

    This was a great post. Thanks for detailing everything. Now we’re hungry! masarap-masarap!

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  • M January 3, 2010, 4:18 pm

    Try using Ilocos vinegar. It will make a world of difference.
    Al’s daughter

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  • Filipino-Kielbasa January 19, 2010, 10:43 am

    Thanks for the recipe! I also have Ruhlmann’s book and have made about 7 different sausages, including an emulsion that I’m very proud of.
    I tried your recipe, but I found that there was a lot of liquid inside the sausages. When stuffing the sausage, there was vinegar squirting out and leaking onto my counter top. When cooking, I found that a lot of liquid also excreted from the sausage. Ultimately, the sausage was a bit dry. My wife, who has a bio-science background, suggested adding sodium phosphate. Her reasoning is that the vinegar lowers the pH of the meat, decreasing its ability to retain moisture. Thus, adding the phosphate will balance the pH. Have you run into this problem?
    I forgot to mention… I added about 1/3 cup sugar. I deviated from your recipe because I knew longanisa has a sweetness to it, but found that your recipe had no sugar. Any thoughts on this also?

    Reply
  • Burnt Lumpia January 19, 2010, 11:00 am

    Hi Filipino-Kielbasa. I never had any problems with extra liquid seaping out of the sausages, but I’m sure it’s possible.
    Also, this particular recipe may be dry because I’ve found that there isn’t enough fat. However, I do have an updated recipe that includes more fat and can be found here: http://burntlumpiablog.com/burnt_lumpia/2009/06/homemade-longanisa.html
    Also, my longanisa has no sugar in it because it is based on the sausages I’ve had in different towns in Ilocos Norte (none of them sweet). But by all means, add sugar if you like.

    Reply
  • Lisa January 24, 2010, 7:36 pm

    Oh my.. this is a LOT of effort!! Good job! I just had Longanisa over my filipino friends for breakfast and fell in love with it. The sweetness and charred flavor were amazing. Thanks for posting this. I will definitely bookmark and give it a try. Next, gotta buy that fancy standing mixer 😉

    Reply
  • Ela Sison June 20, 2010, 9:20 pm

    Longanisa here in the Philippines are really good. If you like to try our homemade longanisa and by chances you come by hundred islands, alaminos city in Pangasinan, you can drop by in 060 Marcos Avenue, Palamis. You can also contact us at 09273145014.

    Reply
  • g September 21, 2010, 12:51 pm

    Just to let you know, someone is using your photo and text, even put a watermark on YOUR photo here:
    http://www.facebook.com/notes.php?id=421434910106&s=10#!/note.php?note_id=420181083500&comments
    he has a blogger account where he posts copied entries…

    Reply
  • Rody November 14, 2011, 4:40 am

    Visited Ilocos Norte/Sur last week and got two kilos of Laoag longganisa from Lourie, near the market. Will try to do a batch of my own, using your basic recipe but with the addition of cayenne pepper and perhaps some turmeric and paprika. I do a mean embutido and a killer calderreta.

    Reply
  • val guiala January 21, 2012, 10:07 am

    In Hawaii, my dad used to make longanisa and would put them in a homemade dry box on the roof to cure. I guess the vinegar took care of any threat of botulism. Have any of you made your longanisa per the recipe and tried drying your longanisa in the sun for a few days prior to eating?

    Reply
  • Cleofe Aqui February 22, 2014, 2:25 pm

    My mom Nanay Doring, who lived on Saticoy and Oakdale in San Fernando Valley made longanisa from the late 70’s to the late 90’s, she had a lot of following all over Southern California…She first made it for us in our family, but while my sister and I were working at Cedars-Sinai was when it took off, just by word of mouth….she moved to Florida in early 2000 and the recipe is still in her head.

    Reply
  • sampaguita August 24, 2014, 2:26 am

    You can use Ilokos Vinegar and anisado wine.

    Reply

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