Bulgarian Sudzhuk

Try your hand at fermenting this herb-infused time-honored Bulgarian sausage that doesn’t need to be cooked before eating.

| Spring 2020


This version employs nutmeg and savory, and makes a larger dried sausage that doesn’t need to be cooked before eating.

Fermentation Time

Fermentation Type: Lacto
Primary Fermentation: 6 days
Aging: About 2 months
Total Time: 2 months and 6 days
Shelf Life:  Up to 1 year frozen in vacuum-sealed bag

Yield: About 2-1/2 pounds.


  • 3-1/2 pounds lean beef trim
  • 1-1/2 pounds pork or beef fat
  • 2 ounces sea salt
  • 0.2 ounce curing salt #2
  • 0.8 ounce dextrose
  • 0.5 ounce cane sugar
  • 0.32 ounce freshly ground black pepper
  • 1.1 ounces freshly ground Aleppo pepper
  • 1 ounce ground savory
  • 0.3 ounce ground cumin
  • 0.68 ounce ground allspice
  • 0.24 ounce ground cinnamon
  • 0.24 ounce ground nutmeg
  • 0.3 ounce freshly ground dried rose petals
  • Pinch ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon B-LC-007 starter culture, dissolved in 0.5 ounce nonchlorinated water
  • Roughly 3-1/2 feet of beef middles of any size, rinsed and soaked until soft


  1. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except the starter culture and the beef middles. Grind the meat mixture twice through the coarse plate of a meat grinder. Reserve one-quarter of the mixture, and send the rest through the coarse plate a third time.
  2. Add the starter culture to the recombined meat mixture, and mix thoroughly with gloved hands until it’s very sticky and everything is evenly combined. Chill the mixture while you prepare the stuffer.
  3. Stuff the meat mixture into the beef middles, tying each sausage off securely with butcher’s twine. Weigh the sausages, and then label them with their weight and the date.
  4. Press the sausages between heavy cutting boards in the fridge overnight, or up to 24 hours. Remove the weight. Let the sausages ferment for up to 5 days at 77 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Hang sausages in a low-light location, such as a curing cabinet, for at least 2 months at 50 to 60 degrees and a humidity of 65 to 75 percent. The sausages will be safe to eat only when they’ve lost 45 to 50 percent of their original weight. Store the sausages in a curing cabinet. Slice thinly before serving.

For More Information on Sausage Fermentation:

Over the past 17 years, Meredith Leigh has worked as a farmer, butcher, chef, teacher, nonprofit executive director, and writer, all in pursuit of good food. Meredith works part time for Living Web Farms, where she travels extensively teaching charcuterie and food production and processing. For more information, visit Meredith's blog!



May 16-17, 2020
Nashville, Tennessee

EVENT UPDATE: Unfortunately, we've had to postpone our Tennessee FAIR to 2021 due to COVID-19.


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