Raw sage is too intense to eat; you have to cook this herb to both mellow it and release the flavor. We adapted this recipe from American Cooking: Southern Style (Time-Life Books, 1971) by Eugene Walter.
- 2 lb. boneless pork shoulder, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp. fresh sage leaves, chopped
- 1 tbsp. salt
- 1 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- 1⁄2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
- 2 pinches ground cayenne
- 3 tart apples
- 1 tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. cinnamon
- Put pork, sage, salt, nutmeg, pepper, and cayenne into a large bowl; gently mix together with your hands. Form mixture into 16 patties.
- Fry patties in batches in a large skillet over medium heat until well browned, 3–4 minutes per side; transfer to a plate as done. Meanwhile, peel and core apples, then cut into 6 wedges each.
- Cook apples in same skillet, turning as they brown, until just soft, 8–12 minutes. Sprinkle sugar and cinnamon over apples and cook, shaking skillet, until apples are glazed, about 5 minutes. Return sausage to skillet to warm through. Garnish with fresh sage.