Albert's Rabbit Sausage ♭

At Christmas time and whenever there is a family gathering at Moore Ranch in Elida, NM, there is inevitably a demand for rabbit sausage for breakfast. I described the tradition for this preparation in the previous recipe, but gave my own Christmas interpretation of it. Here I present the original recipe handed down through Tillinghast generations at the ranch. It is known as “Albert’s Recipe” because Albert Sr. probably taught it to Albert Jr., who wrote it down on a scrap of paper many years ago. I have eaten it prepared by both Alberts, and, happily, even participated in its preparation.

Preparation begins usually the evening before the meal, when Albert would conduct a safari in a pickup truck driven at speeds matching a rabbit’s across the llano estacado pasture, with the rest of us in the truck bed armed with .22 caliber rifles, gleefully hunting down the delectable critters. Rabbits are rife on the ranch, so the hunt usually does not last long.

The ritual hunt is now ably continued by Albert Sr.’s grandson, Joel Moore, the last true cowboy of the line.

The sausage is not only good because of its tradition in the family, but because it also is just a really good tasting sausage!

  • 2 or 3 jackrabbits, deboned
  • 4 or 5 cottontail rabbits, deboned
  • 1/3 × rabbit weight of salt pork
  • ground black pepper
  • leaves from a local sage brush

Albert’s recipe does not specify pepper or sage, but I seem to recall it was always added in (but I may be wrong about this). It also does not say that you put the meat through a meat grinder and form patties. Or that you fry these in a skillet until browned. But you do.

Serves roughly 5-6 patties per pound.