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Grilling: Buffalo Chicken Sausages

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[Photographs: Joshua Bousel]

Buffalo sauce is made for wings. My steadfast belief in this is probably why it took me so long to finally give into my friend's urging to try buffalo chicken sausage. While staying true to my initial belief, I have to admit these spicy, tangy links are pretty good.

I figured they'd be super easy to make at home. Buffalo sauce + ground chicken = great sausage. So it was a big surprise when the links exploded on the grill, had little flavor and a broken texture. That took me back to the drawing board. The issues were probably caused by the large amount of butter in my homemade sauce, so I had to lose it, but didn't want to sacrifice the buttery flavor. To solve this, use Frank's RedHot Buffalo Wings Sauce—they make a "Natural Butter Type Flavor" with no actual butter. It also packs much less of a punch than the original Frank's, so you can add cayenne to get the heat where you want it to be.

I then marinated cubed chicken thighs in the sauce and ground it together to fully incorporate the buffalo sauce into the meat. This solved almost all the shortcomings of my first attempt—the links were well-seasoned throughout with a fine, homogenous texture. There was still an exploding link here and there, but not to the degree I experienced before. I have to thank my friend for letting me in on the magic of buffalo chicken sausage.

About the author: Joshua Bousel brings you new, tasty condiment each Wednesday and a recipe for weekend grilling every Friday. He also writes about grilling and barbecue on his blog The Meatwave whenever he can be pulled away from his grill.

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