Rice and Offal Sausages: Slovak Jaterničky

Slovak Jaternicky rice and offal sausages

Next of the products made from a traditional Slovak pig butchering is jaterničky (ya-ter-nich-ky), sausages stuffed with rice, offal, and various herbs. The idea of eating offal is hard for many to digest but with these sausages, I promise you would never know you were eating any untoward parts of a pig.

Seriously, if you have trouble with the thought of the taste of organs, this is the recipe to try (well, besides my amazing beef liver pate, that doesn’t taste strong at all).

If you’ve butchered an animal but not known what to do with the organs, especially the lungs, honestly try this. I do not like lung, I tried it once and was not impressed; in jaternicky, any offal taste is not even detected. 

Making Slovak Jaternicky, rice and offal sausages

Jaternicky are one of my favourite zabiačka foods, partly because of the taste and partly because they are so convenient. Afterwards they are frozen and can be pulled out at a moment’s notice, popped into the oven, and be served piping hot 20 minutes later.

These sausages are quite fatty and so pair perfectly with sauerkraut, fermented Slovak cabbage stuffed peppers, or other fermented vegetables.   Most Slovaks like to eat it with bread, I prefer not to.

The organs used for this are the soft ones – lung, various glands, some skin, and some liver. These have already been cooked in the cauldrons, along with bones. The rice used for jaternicky is cooked with the same broth, so you are getting the benefit of bone broth in a sausage.

I mentioned caramelized onions in the set up post as well, and this is where you use a large amount of them.

How to Make Slovak Jaternicky, rice and offal sausages

Other things that will be made today (subscribe in the sidebar so you don’t miss the recipes):

  • mozgy: ground meat mixed with eggs and brains that is always lunch.
  • tlačenka: head cheese, which is bits of meat, herbs, and garlic held together with gelatin (remember filling those cauldrons with bones?)
  • lard and cracklings (and I’ll show you what you can make with the cracklings).
  • bacon.
  • podbradnik: literally meaning under the chin, it’s basically fat smeared in garlic and paprika.
  • black pudding: barley is cooked with broth and blood to a pudding consistency.
  • klobasa: Slovak style smoked sausages.
  • liver pate
  • baked meat, which is supper, although at this point I usually just want a salad.

Again, this recipe is an overview of what they added, not exact amounts.

Rice and Offal Sausages: Slovak Jaterničky
  • 5 kg (11 lbs) pork and soft pork organs
  • 5 kg (11 lbs) short grain rice (white)
  • 20-40 g ground black pepper
  • 20 g marjoram
  • garlic, ground (a couple handfuls?)
  • salt
  • caramelized onion, ground (6-8 cups?)
  • sausage casing
  1. Cook the rice in a massive pot, using the broth from the cauldrons (refer to set up post). Allow to cool.
  2. With a meat grinder, grind the meat and organs. First use organs and then meat if needed to make it up to 5 kg.
  3. Put the caramelized onions through the meat grinder (refer to set up post).
  4. Mix all ingredients in a large container.
  5. Using your preferred method, put the mixture into the sausage casing (video above). Fill container with rice and offal mixture. Make sure there are no knots in the sausage casing, which has been sitting in warm water. Slip one end of the casing onto the funnel/spout (I'm sure I'm not using proper words) and gently pull the rest on, poking randomly with a pin. Poke a piece of wooden shish kebob stick through the end of the casing and make a knot. Turn the handle to push through the rice and offal mixture until the end of the casing, and use a stick to make another knot. Every 20 cm or so, twist the casing to form an individual sausage. Repeat until the end.
  6. Slip a string through a batch of jaternicky and dip in simmering water for about 30 sec and then dip in cold water. This cooks the casing and shrinks it a little.
  7. Let rest about 8-10 hrs, then freeze.
  8. To serve, thaw jaternicky (although this is not strictly necessary in a pinch), and bake at 180C/350F for about 20 min. Serve hot, bonus if with fermented veggies.

Dipping Slovak Jaternicky, rice and offal sausages