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Chistorra

Chistorra is a type of fast-cure sausage from Aragon, the Basque Country, and Navarre, Spain. It is made of minced pork, or a mixture of minced pork and beef, is encased in either lamb tripe or plastic, and has a fat content that varies between 70 and 80%. The sausage is flavoured with garlic, salt, and paprika, which gives it a bright red colour. It is usually baked, fried, or grilled and often accompanies other dishes, sometimes as part of tapas. The final cured product tends to be thinner than traditional chorizo or sausage, with a diameter of approximately 25mm. The sausages average 40 cm (16 in) in length, though there are cases when they reach up to 1 metre (3 ft 3 in) long.

In the Aragonese Pyrenees there are two different sorts of txistorra; one of them made only of pork meat and another made of lungs, boned pig head and the pancreas, called berika.

The local variety of chistorra available in the province of León is called Chistorra de León, and is made with a larger percentage of beef.

Preparations

One of the most popular dishes involving chistorra is huevos rotos con chistorra y patatas, a dish with fried eggs and potatoes.

Chistorra is usually fried whole, but served chopped into smaller sections as a tapa. Fried chistorra is often accompanied by beer or wine, especially of the Txakoli variety. Fried chistorra is also a typical bocadillo (sandwich) filler (bocadillo de chistorra).

Other common dishes include croissant preñado, a croissant with chistorra filler, and tortilla con chistorra, a potato or egg omelette with chistorra. Chistorra is traditionally served on the feast day of Thomas the Apostle (December 21) in San Sebastián. During the festivities, chistorra is often served alongside talo and is accompanied by cider.

Chistorra
Author:
Ingredients
Meat
  • 700 g lean pork
  • 300 g back fat, jowls, hard fat trimmings
Ingredients per 1000g (1 kg) of meat
  • 5 teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon pink salt (cure #2) powder
  • ½ teaspoon dextrose (glucose)
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 3 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1½ teaspoons hot pimentón or cayenne pepper
  • 1½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 0.25 g F-LC or L-HP culture (use a scale for exactness)
Instructions
  1. Grind pork through 8 mm plate.
  2. minutes before use, mix culture with 15 ml (¾ tablespoon) de-chlorinated water.
  3. Mix all ingredients with the ground pork.
  4. Stuff firmly into 24 mm sheep casings. Make 60 cm long links.
  5. Ferment at 24ºC for 48 hours, 90-85% humidity.
  6. Dry at 12 - 16ºC,, 85-80% humidity for 3 weeks. (a larger diameter casing will require longer drying time);. The sausage is dried when around 30-35% in weight is lost.
  7. Store sausages at 10-15ºC, 75% humidity.
Notes
Chistorra sausage is consumed often fried and in such a case it can be served at any time after stuffing. It will, however, develop a different flavour after being fermented and dried.
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