Rudolph the Red Nosed Hot Alaskan Sausage
This year, Ali’s parents lived up to the ideals of retirement and drove their motor home from New Jersey to Alaska. They spent something like 2-3 months fly fishing, seeing the sights, and avoiding grizzlies. I know they took a ferry to Alaska at some point, but then they drove through Denali National Park, up to Fairbanks, south to the town of North Pole, and then eventually back through Canada. They made lots of stops but those are the ones I remember. Usually their stories of fly fishing and travelling include bears staring them down, getting trapped under fallen trees, or being lost in a canoe in the pitch black Canadian wilderness. But this trip had an even better story. It’s the story of how they thought of the blog and brought me back a pack of hot Alaskan reindeer sausage!
In addition to an Alaska t-shirt and a big chopping blade with a bone handle, I received a pack of spicy sausage from Alaska Sausage & Seafood Co.
What’s that, Sherlock Holmes? You say that the label says ‘Reindeer Meat Added?’ Ok fine, so they are not strictly reindeer sausage, but also a mix of beef and pork. I’m sorry but no one meat can satisfy. But don’t take my word for it, why don’t you let these gentlemen expand on my point.
According to the site, the sausage links are seasoned with white pepper, coriander, and other spices, and then alder smoked. (Alder wood chips are usually used to smoke salmon. One site selling alder chips says that it is a clean, smoky flavor that is not peppery but has hints of vanilla). My palette is not that sophisticated when it comes to smoke flavor. But I thought this was a great tasting and hot sausage. The taste was potently smoky and quite meaty. It has a snap that almost lifts the back end of the sausage out of the bun. It did not have a gamey taste that I would assume with reindeer, but maybe that’s because of the mix with beef and pork and other flavors. I had three of these left in my pack so I decided to make all of them. I decided to saute some onions as a topping and also used some white horseradish for extra kick.
I shouldn’t have eaten three of these in a row. It strange when you can actually feel an excess of nitrates coursing through your system. I’m pretty sure I had some shamanic visions that night of reindeer spirits. But it’s good to know that you can just order these online and have them at your door whenever you want! Many thanks to the McDonalds for thinking of me and the sausage community on their adventure!