Region: Italy, Apulia
Category: Sausage, Grilled Sausage, Mixed
Difficulty: Labor Intensive
Zambitta are sausages from the province of Bari in Apulia made with fatty beef or veal and lamb meat. In this grill preparation the sausage is formed in one long link that is coiled and secured with long metal skewers and grilled. If the meat you use is very lean you must add about 2 pounds of mixed beef and lamb fat.
This recipe yields 6 pounds of sausage. For 4 to 6 servings, set aside 2 pounds of sausage. Divide the remaining sausage into 2 large zipper plastic freezer bags for future use.
Zampitte, zampina, or zambitta are Barese dialect words that means "leg" because the sausage was made large and flattened so it looked like a leg. According to Prof. Luigi Sada's La cucina pugliese published in 1994 the sausage was invented by the Tarantino agricultural writer Giambattista Gagliardo in the 19th century in the commune of Turi in the provnce of Bari. It is made in one long coil, not tied off and grilled with olive wood. The recipe is "secret" says Sada, but apparently was given to him by a parson who lived in Turi.
Yield: Makes 6 pounds
Preparation Time: 1:30 hours
2 1/2 pounds coarsely chopped or ground beef (not more than 75% lean)
2 1/2 pounds coarsely chopped or ground lamb (not more than 75% lean)
1 pound chopped lamb or beef fat (ask the butcher)
1 cup freshly grated pecorino cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
3 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons fennel seeds
25 feet (sausage) hog casing
Three 20-inch metal skewers
1. Prepare all the ingredients (except the casing) into sausage meat and seasonings, and stuff the casing, according to the instructions at Fresh Homemade Italian Sausages, without marinating and without twisting into links.
2. Arrange the sausage in one long spiral and skewer with 20-inch metal skewers in 3 places to hold together.
3. Prepare a low charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill on low for 15 minutes.4. Place the sausage spiral on the grill. Cook, turning it frequently with hot pads, until brown and no longer mushy to the touch, 30 to 40 minutes.
This sausage is not par-boiled, usually an essential treatment to prevent bursting; therefore both sausage and fire require some attention during grilling to prevent flare-ups, hot spots, and bursting.