Cooked correctly, sausages are tight and slightly crispy on the outside, bursting with moist flavor on the inside. However, there are many different ways to get sausages to this point. Whether you’re grilling, frying, boiling, or baking your sausages, learning a few easy cooking tips can help ensure you get perfect results every time.
1. PAN FRYING
- Heat a frying pan on the stove to medium-high. When the pan is ever-so-lightly smoking or a drop of water immediately starts sizzling when it touches it, you’re ready to cook.
- Add a little oil. Sausages are fairly fatty, so you don’t need to add a lot of extra fat to the pan. A tablespoon of cooking oil spread around the pan can keep it slick until the fats inside the sausages make their way into the pan.
- Lay the sausages on the hot surface. Leave enough space so that none of the sausages are touching. If the sausage casings are connected, cut them apart before putting them on the pan.
- Cook turning occasionally until brown on both sides. Depending on the size of the sausages, this should take between about 10 and 15 minutes. When the sausages are well-browned, cut into one at its mid point. The meat should by firm and cooked all the way through.
- Flatten or butterfly the sausages to reduce cooking time. Waiting for sausages to cook all the way through can be frustrating. Luckily, you can cut down on the time you spend in front of the stove by either flattening them before you start cooking or butterfly them.
- To get started, light your grill and let it build up heat. If you’re using a gas grill, set the burners to medium-high. If you’re using charcoal, light a generous pile of briquettes and let them burn to the point that they are ashed-over and glowing orange.
- Make a “hot” and “cold” side of your grill. If you’re using a gas grill, just turn down the burner(s) on one side to low. If you’re using a charcoal grill, carefully use a metal grill tool to pull most of the hot coals to one side, leaving just a thin layer on the other side. Put the grill over the hot briquettes carefully.
- Sear the sausages on the hot side. As when pan-frying, if the sausage casings are connected, cut them apart before cooking them.Turn the sausages after two minutes. The underside should have a healthy dark-brown sear.
- Transfer to the cold side to cook through. Here, they’ll continue to cook, but you won’t risk burning them like you would on the hot side. Let them cook for about 10 more minutes, turning occasionally. The sausages are done when they are well-browned on the outside and have meat that is firm all the way through with no pink. Juices should run clear.
- Fill a pot with 3/4 of the way with liquid, such as stock, wine, beer or tomato sauce. Boiling sausages won’t give them a crisp exterior, but it will preserver the moisture and fat content within them.
- Boil the water. Use the highest possible setting on your burner — you’re dealing with a lot of water, so you’ll need a lot of heat to boil it. This may still take some time.
- Place the sausages into boiling water. When all the sausages are in the water, turn the heat down so that the boiling reduces to a gentle simmer.
- Let the sausages cook. Cover the simmering water with a lid. Boiled sausages look a little different than grilled or fried sausages when they’re done. They won’t have a brown exterior — instead, they’ll simply be firm and uniform all the way through, with no remaining pink.
- Optionally, brown them in a frying pan.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Prepare a baking pan by lining it with tin foil. Set metal baking racks over the foil-lined pan. The bars should be close enough to each other that sausages won’t fall through.
- Place the sausages on the pan with space in between them. If the sausage links are connected by their casing, cut them apart so that you can spread them out.
- Let the sausages cook for 10 minutes before turning once, then let them cook the remaining 10 minutes undisturbed.
- Check for done-ness before serving. When cooked in the oven, a “done” sausage looks roughly like one that’s been cooked on the grill. The exterior should be brown and crisp all over. The inside should be moist and firm, with no pink remaining. Juices should run clear.