Boudin Blanc is a delicious white sausage originating in the French town of Rethel. The moist sausage is a mix of meat, starch, milk, eggs, and various spices. While French chefs have mastered the art of making the sausage, getting the taste right is harder than with other types of sausages like traditional German sausages or an Italian sausage like soppressata.
The quality and type of ingredients vary by location, so you may find yourself constantly tweaking the recipe. If you’ve ever wondered what is Boudin Blanc, then this article is for you. We’ll explain what it is and how to create the dish at home.
What Is Boudin Blanc?
Boudin Blanc is in the blood sausage group, except the recipe does not call for blood. The lack of blood is what gives the meat its famous light color.*
And yes, Boudin Noir would be the sausage with blood, which causes a dark color.
The sausage contains either pork meat, chicken, veal, or a mixture. Regardless, it is always made from white meat instead of cuts like beef or venison.
Don’t confuse Boudin Blanc with the same-named dish served in Scotland and Ireland. These dishes are oatmeal-based.
Likewise, the Louisiana Boudin Blanc Creole is rice-based and not a French specialty (even though it’s taken on a life of its own, as you can see in this video).
Boudin Blanc Recipe & Ingredients
You can make around four large chicken Boudin Blanc sausages with this recipe. You may not want to substitute for veal or pork unless you are sure the spices won’t interfere with the overall taste.
To make Boudin Blanc sausages at home, here’s what you need.
- 350 g skinned and chopped chicken rib meat or breast
- 3 slices of bread
- 5 tbsp of milk
- 2 tsp of salt
- 4 egg whites
- 180 ml of double or heavy cream
- 40 g of foie gras (duck pate)
- 6.5 g of grated summer Black truffles
- 1 tsp of cloves
- 1 tsp of nutmeg
- 1 tsp of thyme (preferably fresh)
- 1 meter of hog casings
Some of these ingredients may be pricey and hard to find. You can often find foie gras and truffles in specialty and fine foods markets. Hog casings are available at many butcher shops and grocery store meat counters.
How to Make Boudin Blanc
So, we’ve answered the question: what is Boudin Blanc? Now, it’s time to go over the steps of making it.
Start With the Hog Casings
The hog casings are what hold the sausage mixture together. After mixing the ingredients, they get stuffed into the casings. You don’t want to rip the casings as it will ruin the sausages.
Soak the casings in warm water while you’re mixing the ingredients. It softens them up, making them easier to work with.
Bread, Milk, Egg Whites, and Chicken
You want to freeze the chopped and skinned chicken for about an hour, then dump the pieces in a food processor. Freezing the meat prevents it from heating up in the food processor.
The meat shouldn’t start warming until you’re ready to start cooking.
As the chicken is thawing, tear the three slices of bread into small pieces and soak them in milk.
Toss the thawed chicken in the food processor and let it run for about five seconds. You can try a blender, but it may not be powerful enough to mix the ingredients.
The egg whites are next. Run the food processor for an additional ten seconds. Then you will have a whitish liquid that is gradually starting to thicken. Let the mixture sit for ten seconds before adding the milk-soaked bread.
Time to Add the Foie Gras, Cream, and Other Spices
The quality of meat is crucial for Boudin Blanc sausage, but it’s the spices that give the meat its mild and delicious flavor.
Toss in your spices, and don’t forget the truffles and foie gras. They are what give the sausage a rich and satisfying taste.
Let the processor run for five seconds and shut it off.
Turn the Sausage Mixture into Mousse
You want the sausage mixture to have a mousse-like consistency when you stuff it into the casings. Don’t worry, you are not making dinner or a unique dessert mousse.
Adding the heavy cream to the mixture in the food processor does the trick. Run the kitchen appliance until you have a mousse-like consistency.
Start Stuffing the Casings
Dry off the outside of the casings enough so they aren’t slipping out of your hands. You don’t have to get all of the warm water off.
Start stuffing the sausage mixture into six-inch casings. Don’t forget to twist the ends. It keeps the meat inside the casing and off of your pan.
Try using a spoon to scoop the meat out, but you will still need to use your hands. Go slowly to avoid accidentally tearing the casing. It’s thin and rips easily.
Grab a Pan and Some Cold Water
Place the sausage in a pan deep enough to submerge them in cold water. Cover the pan with foil or baking paper and place in the oven. Slowly bring the internal temperature up to around 176°F. Don’t rush the process. Instead, gradually keep turning the oven’s temperature up.
When the temperature is at 176°F, hold it there for about 20 minutes (for both taste and food safety).
You Need Butter and a Frying Pan
Carefully remove the sausages from the water. It’s hot, so you want to use tongs. Grab a dish towel and pat the Boudin Blanc sausages dry.
Place several pats of butter in a frying pan. Let the butter melt before turning up the heat and tossing the sausages in. Fry the Boudin Blanc until the casing is crisp and slightly brown.
When Should You Make Boudin Blanc?
Originally, Boudin Blanc was a Christmas sausage, but times have changed. The global popularity of the French sausage specialty ensures it is enjoyed year-round.
It makes an excellent breakfast sausage. You can also serve it at dinner, or even in a sandwich.
Anyone who has wondered what is Boudin Blanc has never enjoyed the delicious white sausage (and different than the German white sausage). It’s a French specialty you can enjoy at home with the right ingredients.
Don’t wait for the Christmas holidays to make it. Give the recipe a try and your taste buds won’t stop thanking you!