Májas hurka Hungarian Liver Sausage…Igen!!!


I love Hungarians!

Continued from Hungarian Sausage…Igen!!!!!


Gizzards always look like jewels to me! And these have been gifted for a shared sausage making venture from one of our beautiful local farms, Friendly Haven Rise Farms. http://www.FriendlyHaven.com These babies are thawing so I can clean them for the making of a very traditional Hungarian Sausage! When cooking, I believe love must be woven into the making. They are now finished, so am writing more on making them. As always, the food comes with story. A memory, as food for me is as much living present, contribution to the future, and memory of old.


Thawing Chicken Gizzards from Friendly Haven Rise Farm!

When I was growing up, there were many interesting places I would find around my Grandfathers houses. In our Family, when we were young, we lived with Grandfathers and Grandmothers, who had many nooks and crannies on their homesteads. As I grew older, being a military child, we moved all over the world, but I was lucky enough to return during the summers to stay again with Grandfathers and Grandmothers. So my Great Grandmother Zsa Zsa was a true chicken farmer, on a very large scale (a thousand plus at a time) watched and guarded by her and the dogs. She knew so much about everything, about growing, about sewing, about making…she made just about everything she owned!

And in this growing, raising and sewing, she also preserved everything in ways that required mostly just the cold of the ground beneath the house, things wrapped in cloth, in hay, sand, newspaper, string, covered with afghans. From the ceiling in a dedicated food room, she had meat hanging and sausages. She would have the peppers in strands, and garlic in braids. Dried mushrooms danced on strings, herbs in bundles and paper bags. In the food room, she had stacks and stacks of foods and boxes of jars of home-made things, things I swear are beyond the imagination of what can be preserved with certain olden ratios. Cakes and breads, pie makings, cheese. I am not sure if our modern day recipes really reflect safety and improvement, rather, there is a dependence on appliances instead of Earth. That’s a writing for another day!

So making sausages reminds me of her, anya Zsa Zsa. Of how, when we make something, it is a celebratory event. It is making love with ones hands and ones heart and ones head and ones senses, ones touch, ones smelling, ones seeing. It is a process of faith that whatever is made will turn out just perfect….because the teaching of the rural mountain dweller is you cannot always go buy what a recipe calls for, you use what is on hand in the larder that you and your neighbors have grown. In these days of wondering what the future will ever bring in our society, I can just imagine my nagy Nagyanya Zsa Zsa’s response! She would have spit on the ground for dramatic emphasis, and she would point to the Earth!

And so, here are the jewels, the gizzards, given to me by Jacqueline and Joseph Freeman, to make sausage out of. Here is the process for making Májas hurka, a fresh liver and offal sausage.


A Pig Heart

Gather your meats. Submerge your meats in ice cold water up to a day before processing, so as to leach any last remains of blood from the organs. While there are Hurka sausages made of blood, they are fresh blood only, not old. I use only meats of animals well raised, humanely, in traditional style. Beef grass-fed only, pastured pigs, pastured chickens. I used 51 chicken gizzards from Jacqueline’s Farm, an assortment of livers, hearts and gizzards and tail flap fat pads from my own recently butchered chickens, 2 pig livers and 2 pig hearts from my friend Barbara John’s, and a batch of frozen head cheese that I had made about three weeks prior from my friend Melissa Church’s pigs. To this, I added some chopped grass-fed beef fat and organic pastured herb eating pig fat from my friend Lynn Tidland’s pig. Be sure to clean your meats well, wash them very clean, and cut extraneous veins, trim off membranes from the heart. A rule of thumb is to keep meats very cold to make the slicing easier and keep them fresher.


Pig Liver

Here are the chicken gizzards cut open. I love to cut gizzards with a good buck knife! Here I have sliced them in half, revealing their stomach contents. Clean out the stomach contents, but do not throw away. Cut away the meat from the gizzard wall. Pictured below, left is the gizzard wall after meat is removed.


Gizzard Wall with Meat Removed


Chicken Gizzards Sliced In Half

Here is a picture of the gizzards with stomach contents removed, waiting for another bath to remove stray particles before the meat is cut away.


Sliced Gizzards with Contents Removed Waiting for Bath

Next, this picture is a little wonky because I am trying to get a good angle of a tendon attached to a gizzard. Remove the tendons. Wash them AGAIN.


Remove Those Tendons!

Drop the thrice cleaned gizzard meat pieces into a bowlful of Cold Rosemary Garlic Vinegar while you process the rest. This handmade vinegar below is made by my close friend Cynthia Hoffman. The vinegar will keep the gizzards fresh and flavor them beautifully.


Gizzard Meat Soaking in Cynthia Hoffman’s Homemade Rosemary Garlic Vinegar!

Remember I said do not throw away the gizzard contents? In this case, they are full of organic grass, little pebbles and quality legumes. I saved everything I scooped out and fed to our own chicken flock. They are so thankful for these tidbits as they go wild for them! You can also compost them in a special bin or a special place you bury animal trimmings.


Gizzard Contents Shall Not Be Wasted! To the chicken flock they go…watch their excitement!!! 🙂

Next, chop your fats! Pastured, organic fats only please! I used fat pads from retired layers, pastured beef fat from my friend Heather Velazquez, and pastured pig fat from my friend Lynn mentioned above and a little left over from my friend Melissa mentioned above.

Place all prepared meats and fats together in a large crock or bucket, and mix in spices. I used Sage, Marjoram and Thyme from Erin Harwood’s Farm Garden Delights http://www.gardendelightsfarm.com.


Organic Marjoram from Garden Delights


Organic Thyme from Garden Delights


Organic Sage from Garden Delights

Garlic and Basil from my friend’s farm Storytree Farm and my own garden plot here at Serendipity Plant Lore School of Ethnobotanical Studies!


Organic Garlic from Storytree Farm and Serendipity Plant Lore School of Ethnobotanical Studies

Himalayan Sea Salt from our Serendipity Azure orders group.

Black Pepper from Mountain Rose Herbs. I would grow this if I could!!! But when I cannot grow or forage something locally up here, first I check with other local area Herbalists, and then I use Mountain Rose Herbs as the backup larger regional supplier, because their standard of ethics is in line with my own values, and they are supportive of the deep tradition of Herbalism we are part of, as opposed to marketing products


Organic, Fresh Ground Pepper!


This black pepper, to be as fresh as possible, is not ground until it is added to the meat mixture.

Kalocsa, Hungary Paprika. I used plenty of sweet smoked from Kalocsa and Hot Paprika from Kalocsa. I used some Szeged Sweet Paprika as well, along with a special Turkish pepper from Aleppo, Turkey. The Paprika is very special, they each have their own flavor profile, and each Paprika from each region of any place has its own, distinctive flavor as it works with the particular soil nutrients, sun, and rainfall patterns and palates of people in a region. For Hurka sausages, these are the best places to obtain paprika for the traditional style. The Magic Mountain Basil I grew in my own yard. I also used a goat culture.


The BEST Paprika and Magic Mountain Basil grown in my herbal garden!


Aleppo Pepper from Aleppo, Turkey!

Mix all these wonderful spices and fresh garlic cloves! Put all prepared meats on ice, in a freezer, or someplace in ice cold well water prior to grinding. Here they are sitting in Pyrex bowls before being cooled.


Meat and Fat Mixed with Spices ready to be cooled down!

Bring your near frozen meats to your grinder and grind away!


Freshly Ground Offal Meats!!!

At this point, I tried some ground sausage in a home-made batch of Chili Verde from tomatillos growing wild in my yard and from one of my favorite farmers Anne Lawrence, looking good! This chili verde had been cooking ongoing for 4 days…when it becomes PERFECT! Here is a post I made about Chili Verde a while back, I have a long history with fire roasting Hatch New Mexico peppers and green chili cooking under the watchful eye of a Mexican Family I worked for. The Family would go on an annual pilgrimage to Hatch, and we would spend two weeks fire roasting them in a great big roasting wheel, together, over fire, taking turns in a task that takes much energy. We would roast truckloads to put away for the whole years worth of chili verde! If you’re interested in the step by step recipe and more pepper musings, read it here:



My homemade Chile Verde. Pretty much to die for!!!

Time to season and taste again with some home-cultured sour cream and fresh dill!


Taste Test!

When spices are splendid, then I added some Tokaji Furmint for a binder. Amazing, and gives extra fermentation potential for the sausage as it short ages (some sausages require longer aging, but I made these for to be fast and fresh and for braising).

Make the sausages and age them for 2 days….voila! They will deepen in flavor as they age.


I LOVE the look of home-made Sausages!


Drying out and Aging. 🙂

Now, to eat them up Hungarian way! We eat these gently braised in an oven at low temperature, in hard apple or fresh apple cider (you could use apple juice too). Serve them up with cultured sour cream and dill on the side, baked in acorn squashes with butter and apple cider (we did this with our LAST 2 acorn squashes from the previous year grown from Yacolt Mountain Farm and Nursery http://www.yacoltmountainfarmandnursery.com or simmered in a pot or oven on a bed of sauerkraut, Traditional Hungarian style!!! What a nutritious and beautiful way to eat the the whole of the animals we raise, or our local neighbors raise. 🙂

This has been a beautiful shared opportunity from a precious farm, that also honors something I hold dear to me, the traditional foods of my family for generations. The pure fun for me to share this with everyone has been a gift. There was a time, in the making of food, where the good food came from the ground of soul, the food radiating from a place between places. The food comes through hard work and sweat and combined interests, but also from a place that exists before the food even existed. When bringing about gifts of Spirit, we are bringing about something from that place, and THAT is the Great Knitter, the Great Weaver, the Great God that is working through all of us.

For the sausage to be and become made, we must, in the deep tradition of my Grandfathers, be there in the making of it every step of the way. Not a product, not a thing, not something that is not something from the beyond, but IS the beyond, the beyond here present in the making. So we make, and we cook, so we take the precious bones of a process so old, and we infuse ourselves into it fully. My Grandfathers and Grandmothers, my Great Grandmother taught me that. For when we tend to the home fires, the home fires of soul, our food comes from that. We give thanks for the grace, for the heat we are given, for the kitchen that holds and keeps the home together. There are little homes, and there are greater homes, and homes within homes. All fires lit, all lives given over to the Great Beyond in the making of these sausages send their gift and their blessing back to us from that very place. Always we honor that place, whether the people have passed on that we love, our animals, our plants, our loves. This is the Great Knitting that we are all knitted in. The Great Weaving that I and my larger Family eat from. 🙂

Happy Májas!!!

(c) 2014, Summer L. Farkas Takács-Michaelson, CH

All Rights Reserved. If you share this, please attribute credit for the pictures, writing, and recipe. This is all my life, my lived experience with my community and family, and should be honored as such, as yours should be honored in the same way. Thank you! 🙂

September Azure, Pastured Egg and Tea Orders and Shelter Donation!!!

Hello Serendipity Azure Folks!
It’s time again for our Azure gathering, our August order cut-off is this coming Friday, September 12th at 4 PM with delivery the following Wednesday, September 17th, pickup times from 2-6 PM.Nice Day! 031
I’m putting out a request to those who pick up CSA produce boxes from Storytree Farm…my neighbor who picks up my produce box on Azure Wednesdays is out of town…would anyone be willing to pick up both her box and my box this coming Azure Delivery Day? Thank you so much in advance!!!
If you would like me to source some pastured eggs to have with your order, please let me know how many you would like! These may come from various local farms and sellers in our group or associated with our group, so prices will vary according to source.
Benjamin’s Organic Egg Shoppe will have one or possibly two dozen organic, free range, corn and soy free eggs for sale at $6.00 a carton. This is Ben’s little side business that helps support his flock of beautifully loved chickens that he tends. Chickens receive garden pickin’s, hand made feeds, a bit of clabbered raw milk, spouted peas/lentils/radish seeds/misc. beans and scraps from our kitchen, and homestead bugs, snails, wild weeds and nutritious greens.
Red Salmon Fish Bliss Pickup is the following Friday after Azure Wednesday, on September 19th! For those who ordered fish, please follow instructions in the email!
The Herbal and Wild Foods Apprenticeships offered by Serendipity Plant Lore School of Ethnobotanical Studies have been announced for the 2015 year, interviews have already started! If you are interested and would like information about the programs, send an email to lemonlotus@gmail.comhttps://serendipityherbals.wordpress.com/2014/04/12/accepting-applications-for-2015/
Share Shelter Donation!!!
THANK YOU all who donated to Share Shelter AGAIN!!! Let’s go for a new donation round!!! We’ve been keeping this shelter love going for a few years, let’s light some more fires and clean our homes! Ordering an extra can of decent food for the Shelter is an idea that Erin H. came up with a little while ago. Here’s a picture below of some of what was collected and donated to the Orchard’s Share Shelter! Other things we can collect are gently used items for kitchen, clothes, backpacks, hotel samples of hygiene supplies, books and magazines!
Garden Delights Bulk Organically Grown Herbs! Supporting local Herbalists and local Herbal Farms helps to keep money in our communities, provide fresher and stronger herbs than commercially available, and helps to keep local and bio-regional Herbalism alive! Here we have some amazing bulk herbs from Garden Delights, a farm that I highly recommend for ethics and care in the arts of growing and processing. Prices range from $.50 to $2.00. Choose from: Parsley, Chives, German Chamomile, Roman Chamomile, Sage, Lemon Balm, Yarrow, Plantain, Peppermint and Thyme.
Serendipity Plant Lore’s Tea Listing! 
These teas and herbs are highly medicinal, and are extras from my own organic garden and wild forages. All ethically harvested, the exceptions to the herbs that I’ve grown or foraged myself are those like Cinnamon, All Spice, and Red, Black and Green, and Olive Tea Leaves. These are ethically obtained from other Herbalists who have the same great care and ethic. These Tea Herb extras help to support the consultation work for those those in need of receiving free services. I thank you for your support, and hope, in return, you are tantalized with amazing Earth Medicine for your own health care and lovely, compost-able gifts! Some NEW offerings too! Limited Quantities. 🙂

Serendipity Plant Lore has beautiful hand grown, hand sourced, sustainable and ethically wild-crafted herbal teas for $7 a box/sack. Each of the tea offerings has been used by this herbalist for many decades to aid health, enjoyment and vitality, recovery from many health problems. They have “lived” with me for so long, they have become part of me, and I am excited to have these offerings which truly support our family and the work as I continue my ongoing education and offering sliding scale consultations for those in need.Choose from:

~Lovin’ Liver Tea (your liver will be happy!)
~Summer Time Afternoon Tea (relaxing and sweet)
~Great Grandmother Gertrude’s Memory Lovin’ Tea (brain cell oxygenating crew!)
~Green Tonic Tune (tuning cells and soul together!)
~Vanilla Coffee Substitute (nourishing and coffee like)
~Cinnamon Coffee Substitute (nourishing and coffee like)
~Great Gert’s Cold Hand and Foot Tea (circulatory warming tea for the cold)
~Galloping Gertrude’s Tea (relaxing and locally nutritious)
~Flu Flummox Tea (just befuddle your flu bugs in style!)
~Arabian Summer Tea (a tea to remind you of the smells of an Arabian Love Garden, with plants that touch our center, build up the immune system, and sweep away what needs to be swept away.)
~Shepherd’s Tea! When you want to corral those irksome viral beings and nondescript inflammatory triggers, what you need is a Shepherd to round ‘em up and over the bluff!
~Olive Leaf Tea, an anti-viral, anti-oxidant tea to ward off the minions of Mordor!
~Delicious Radheish Chai!
~Spicy Radheish Chai (inspired by my great friend, Radhe G.)
~Mother’s Milk Tea…to help Mother nourishes Baby Ones.
~Comfrey Leaf
~Dandelion Leaf
~Elder Flowers
~Pineapple Sage
~Garden Sage
~Rue (only to practitioners)
~Shitake Mushrooms
~Chanterelle Mushrooms
~Lobster Mushrooms (seasonal offering)
~More offerings, please inquire and I will check the Apothecary.
(c) 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 Summer L. Farkas Takács-Michaelson, CH