There is nothing better than making your produce at home. We especially love making meats such as liverwurst.
However, especially with liverwurst, you always end up with a ton of products if you have to use a whole liver. The best solution would be to freeze it, but is it possible?
Can you freeze liverwurst? Yes, you can freeze liverwurst. Freezing is the best way to preserve it, as liverwurst can last only a few days in the fridge, but up to 2 months in the freezer. You can freeze liverwurst as a log, in slices, or as a pate.
It is very possible, even recommended, to freeze your liverwurst! In this article, we will look at how to freeze different forms of liverwurst as well as the safety measures required and some tips and tricks.
What Is Liverwurst?
If you are unfamiliar with or completely new to liverwurst, it is really just a type of sausage.
It is extremely popular in Europe, specifically Austria, Germany, Poland, and Russia to name a few. It is also popular in certain regions of America like Chile and Argentina.
This sausage is unique, as it is made from the liver of a mammal. There are many variations of this sausage depending on what animal the liver is from (pork, beef, or lamb), other ingredients added, and production methods used.
Its consistency closely resembles that of polony, but the texture can vary depending on other ingredients used and the purpose of the product.
Now, you might be wondering why there is a need to freeze liverwurst. Buying it from the store helps you choose exactly how much you want, after all. The problem, however, comes when making it at home.
Because you are using such a specific and uncommon piece of meat, you will need to use a whole liver if you don’t have anything else to make with it. This means that you will most likely end up with a large batch of sausage.
You can, of course, store the sausage in the refrigerator; however, the shelf life isn’t very long, about 3-5 days. So unless you are planning a big party, freezing would be the best solution.
Luckily, liverwurst freezes very well – it is the best way to preserve it! If frozen properly, it can last anywhere between 1-2 months.
Because there are so many different types of liverwurst, it is important to know what it is made of as that might affect the freezing process.
It is also important to remember that if the liverwurst is stored for too long, it will begin to lose its flavor and its texture will begin to change. Try to use the sausage within the use-by date.
How to Freeze Liverwurst, Step-By-Step
All right, so you have liverwurst you want (or need) to freeze. But how do you do it?
1. Identify the Contents
This is a very important step as ingredients such as fresh herbs, spices or nuts will affect the shelf life.
Raw meat already has a short shelf-life, thus having other ingredients that do not freeze as well or might have an even shorter freezer life, like nuts and herbs, will ultimately affect how the liverwurst freezes.
2. Wrap the Liverwurst in Plastic
How you wrap the liverwurst depends on which form it is in. If you have a whole log, whether it has been cut or not doesn’t matter. You will still need to tightly wrap the log in plastic or saran wrap.
If you have sliced liverwurst, it is best to stack them into a log shape, separating the slices with non-stick or wax paper to prevent them from merging when thawing. Wrap the log with plastic wrap as you would an uncut log.
If you have a liverwurst log without a casing, wrap it in wax or parchment paper before wrapping it in plastic. This will help the log keep its shape.
3. Cover the Log with Foil
Next, cover the log with aluminum foil so you can label the contents. The foil only acts as a surface to write the label on (next step).
Do not skip this step and write directly on the plastic wrap. The ink from the market might leek through the plastic and come into contact with the liverwurst.
This will stain the content, give off a chemical smell, and make it inedible as the ink is hazardous and not safe to consume.
4. Label Your Product
This is an important step that not many people do. It is very important to write the following information on the foil or the container:
- Name of contents i.e. liverwurst and also include possible flavors.
- Date it was made (even if you bought the sausage, the packages usually have a manufacturing date on them).
- Date it was frozen (this will assist in stock rotation).
- Use-by date (usually between 1 – 2 months after the manufacturing date.
This might seem like an unnecessary step, but it is crucial for two reasons. First, to ensure that the oldest products are used first to prevent wastage – this is called stock rotation or the FIFO (first-in, first-out) method.
Secondly, that if any meat goes off, you can check the label to figure out why. It might be because of several factors, but labeling the products will help you eliminate some of those reasons.
5. Place in an Airtight Container
Place the labeled log in an airtight container to protect it from being damaged (dented or misformed) by other objects in the freezer.
The container also acts as another barrier of protection against foreign objects and odors. You can also write all of the labeling information on the container if you prefer.
6. Place the Container in the Freezer.
Be sure to place the liverwurst somewhere in the freezer where it will not be subject to extreme temperature fluctuations. See our food safety and tips & tricks section for more information.
How to Freeze Liverwurst Spread
Liverwurst spread, or pate, is just liverwurst, but in a different, more pliable consistency. You can easily make it using liverwurst sausage or you can buy it in-store.
When freezing pate, use it within 1 month of the initial freezing date. You can keep it in the freezer for longer, but it won’t be nearly the same in texture and taste.
Because it has a very specific consistency, it will be affected much more quickly than liverwurst in a log form. Liverwurst pate is also much more susceptible to freezer burn if not stored correctly due to its high moisture content.
Steps to Freeze Liverwurst Pate/Spread
- Place the spread or remaining spread in a clean plastic or glass airtight container. Before adding a lid, place a sheet of plastic or saran wrap directly on the surface of the spread. This will help prevent oxidation and accidental contact with other ingredients.
- Wrap the container with foil or label directly on the container.
- Label as per the instructions above on the foil or container.
- Place it in the freezer in an area that can be easily accessed, since this treat won’t last long.
Your freezer should have no fluctuating temperatures that will cause the meat to defrost and re-freeze, as this will cause the meat to spoil or have a much shorter freezer life.
Your freezer should also not have any strong odors inside as the meat will absorb it and when eventually consumed, relay those flavors.
Because meats are organic materials, they can go off very quickly. It is very important to use clean, stain and odor-free containers to store the liverwurst in as any foreign object (especially bacteria) could result in your sausage going bad.
Glass is the most hygienic option, just note that it could become very fragile in the freezer.
Tips & Tricks For Freezing Liverwurst
Here are even more steps you can take and things to note to ensure your liverwurst-freezing process is as smooth as possible:
- Liverwurst will only remain at its freshest in the freezer if your freezer has a consistent temperature of 0 degrees Fahrenheit (-18 degrees Celsius).
- Most liverwursts are enclosed in some form of a casing (natural or artificial). These will help protect the meat from foreign objects and odors and will help the meat from freezing evenly.
- You can also store the liverwurst, regardless of its form, in re-sealable freezer bags. We still recommend placing these bags in an airtight container, however, to protect the contents from any damage.
- Use containers that stack nicely to optimize the space in your freezer.
- Try to section your freezer into different areas such as meats, vegetables, bakes, etc. This way you can store the liverwurst in the meats section and whenever you are looking for meat, you will see the package and not forget about it.
We hope this guide has been useful so far and that you feel totally confident about freezing your liverwurst (or pate) now.
We’ve also included this related questions section just in case you have more questions about this topic that you’ve been dying to ask.
How Do You Thaw or Defrost Liverwurst?
To thaw frozen liverwurst, remove it from the freezer one day before you need it and defrost it in the refrigerator overnight. This ensures it stays at a safe temperature during thawing.
How Do You Thaw Liverwurst Pate?
Liverwurst pate (or spread) has a specific consistency that will be affected when freezing, however it can still be frozen. Defrost it in the same manner as the logs or slices, but you may also need to drain any excess water from the container.
Can This Method Be Used for Other Processed Meats?
This method can be used to freeze other processed meats, however, it is important to still check the shelf-life of any food you decided to freeze or store.
Not every processed meat may have the same shelf-life as liverwurst. In general, we recommend keeping meat in the freezer for no longer than 4 months. But again, you’ll want to check the best-by date for all of your food.