A simple twist on a griling staple. These have turned out to be a favorite at all my bbq’s this year. The concept and execution are both amazingly simple. All you do is slice a spiral the length of a sausage prior to grilling. An easy way to do that is to put the sausage on the end of a cutting board closest to you. Here’s a walkthrough, adjust the method to whatever makes you most comfortable.
Take a sharp knife (really, you should have no other kind), holding the knife in your right hand, at perhaps a 30% angle to the sausage, start on the left side of the sausage (the tip angled left), slice just through the skin, and roll the sausage forward, keeping the knife at the same angle, headed across the sausage. Depending the angle, length of the cutting board, sausage and your arms, you may have to reposition mid-way and roll again.
You can also just do this freehand, but it’s harder to get a consistent spiral. Also, adjust the angle to your favorite width of spirals (this will take some practice). I find that depending on the thickness of the sausage, tighter angles work better on thinner sausages, but there are really no rules here. One benefit, if you’re droping these in a bun, there’s more surface area, and slots for relish, chili, or whatever toppings you choose as well. It does make the dog considerably longer when cooked, up to maybe two times, so take that into account when picking which buns to use with which sausages
Then, just grill the sausage like you normally would. You might think this would reduce the snap of a good sausage, but it doesn’t, nor does it seem to dry them out. They cook faster, so watch out for that, and if you cut too deeply, the cooked sausages become difficult to move without breaking. My favorite sausages for this are Millers. They are not only dense, with a sturdy casing, but taste great. Tried several of their sausages, all worked flawlessly.
Here’s another shot of a batch of them, to get an idea of the spiral pattern you’ll be cutting into the sausages.
A friend sent me this video from chow.com when he saw my post. The exact same idea, they did theirs in June, and I didn’t think about it until prepping for our July 4th grill/bbq, so they get prior art :-). Love that they tried it for the same reasons. The video’s probably more fun than this post, so here’s a link!