Square sausage, also known as Lorne sausage, is a popular breakfast item in Scotland and parts of North America. This distinctive type of sausage is characterized by its shape, which makes it easy to stack between slices of bread.
But what if you have square sausage in your freezer and need to know whether you can cook it from frozen? In this article, we will explore the ins and outs of cooking frozen square sausage.
Understanding Square Sausage
Before diving into the details of freezing and cooking square sausages, let’s first establish what this culinary delight actually is. Square sausage is a type of ground meat that is typically made from beef, pork, or a mix of the two. The meat is seasoned with herbs and spices before being shaped into large blocks that are then sliced into smaller pieces.
The ingredients used in making square sausages vary depending on the recipe and personal preference. Some people prefer to use only ground pork or beef, while others use a combination of both. The seasoning blend may include salt, pepper, coriander, nutmeg, sage, and other herbs.
When it comes to preparing square sausages for consumption, there are several ways to cook them. Grilling, frying, broiling, or baking are all viable options that can produce delicious results.
Basics of Freezing Food
Freezing food is an excellent way to extend its shelf life while preserving its quality. The process involves lowering the temperature of food below its freezing point (usually around 0°F) using specialized equipment such as a freezer.
When food is frozen quickly at low temperatures (preferably below -18°C), ice crystals form within its cells instead of between them. This prevents damage to cell walls resulting from expanding ice crystals during rapid water expansion between cells.
Freezing does affect the taste and texture of some foods more than others due to temperature changes affecting moisture content or other sensitive properties. However, good freezing practices can mitigate these effects to some extent.
Freezing Square Sausage
Freezing square sausage is a convenient way to preserve it for later use. The key to properly freezing square sausage lies in ensuring air tightness to protect against freezer burn and other forms of deterioration. Here’s how you can do this:
- Wrap the sausages tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil.
- Place the wrapped sausages in an airtight container or freezer bag.
- Label and date the container or bag before placing it in the freezer.
Following these steps will help ensure that your sausages stay fresh and free from any negative effects of long-term storage.
Cooking Frozen Square Sausage In The Oven
Cooking frozen square sausage in the oven is quick and easy. Here’s how you can do it:
- Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C).
- Take out your frozen square sausages from the freezer, unwrap them, and place them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
- Cover the tray with aluminum foil and bake for 25-30 minutes until slightly browned on all sides.
Make sure that you flip the sausages halfway through cooking so that they cook evenly on both sides.
Cooking Frozen Square Sausage In The Microwave
Cooking frozen square sausage in the microwave is also possible but has its own set of advantages and disadvantages:
- Faster cooking time
- Less energy consumption
- No need for oil or added fats
- May cause some moisture loss
- Risk of uneven cooking
- May result in rubbery texture
If you choose to cook frozen square sausage using a microwave, follow these instructions:
- Remove sausages from their packaging, place them on a microwave-safe plate, cover them loosely with a damp paper towel, and microwave for 1-2 minutes on high power.
- Turn the sausages over halfway through the cooking process to ensure even heating.
- Once they are fully cooked, let them rest in the microwave for an additional minute or two before serving.
Note that your microwave’s wattage may affect cooking times, so adjust accordingly.
Defrosting Frozen Square Sausage Before Cooking
While there is no harm in cooking square sausage from frozen, it is generally recommended that you defrost them first for enhanced flavor and overall better quality compared to cooking from frozen. Here’s why:
- Defrosting helps soften the meat fibers, making it easier for seasoning and other flavors to penetrate.
- It reduces cooking time and ensures more even heating.
- It can preserve texture and moisture content better than when cooked from frozen.
To defrost your square sausages:
- Take them out of their freezer bag or container.
- Place them on a plate or tray in the refrigerator overnight. This will allow them to thaw slowly without risking bacterial growth.
- Once defrosted, cook as per your preference – frying, baking, broiling, or grilling.
You can also defrost frozen square sausage by microwaving it on low heat settings (50% power) for about 5-10 minutes until thawed but not hot. However, avoid thawing in hot water as this method poses a risk of bacterial growth that can affect taste quality.
In summary, you can cook square sausage from frozen but better results are obtained if you defrost it first before cooking to preserve its texture and flavors fully. There are several ways to prepare square sausage including grilling, frying, broiling or baking with each producing delicious results when done correctly.
Whatever way you choose to cook square sausage either using the oven or microwave or after having defrosted it properly following our guide, enjoy it hot and fresh off the grill. With these tips on your side, you’ll never have to worry about cooking square sausage from frozen again!
- Q: Can the square sausage be cooked from frozen? A: Yes, the square sausage can be cooked from frozen, but it will take longer to cook thoroughly than if thawed beforehand.
- Q: How long does it take to cook a frozen square sausage? A: When cooking from frozen, it typically takes about 20-25 minutes for the square sausage to cook through completely. However, cooking times may vary depending on the thickness of the sausage.
- Q: Will cooking a frozen square sausage affect its taste or texture? A: Cooking a frozen square sausage should not significantly affect its taste or texture. However, as previously mentioned, it may take longer and require more attention during cooking to ensure that it is cooked evenly.
- Q: Is there a recommended method for cooking a frozen square sausage? A: The best method for cooking a frozen square sausage would be to preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C) and place the sausage on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Bake for 20-25 minutes until fully cooked through, flipping once halfway through the cooking time.