Makes 100 to 120 balls
This makes plenty, but the recipe can be cut down proportionally quite easily. Any extra sausage balls can be frozen cooked or uncooked. The trick to any mixture like this is to have everything the same texture, so that they will combine evenly. Chilling the finished dough makes it easier to divide into the balls.
1 pound well-seasoned pork sausage
1 pound finely grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup self-rising flour
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Thoroughly crumble sausage and place in a plastic bag. Add cheese and flour. Work toge-ther sausage, cheese and flour to form a dough and refrigerate 20 to 30 minutes. Divide dough into 4 portions. Working with one portion at a time, keeping the remainder refrigerated, take a tablespoon of sausage mixture and roll it into a 3/4-inch ball. Move to a rimmed baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough. Bake 15 minutes. Balls will puff slightly when cooked. Remove pan carefully from the oven as there will be hot fat on the pan. Discard the fat and serve the sausage balls immediately. They may be refrigerated overnight and reheated, or wrapped well and frozen.
Variation: Add salt, pepper, cayenne or herbs as desired.
Nathalie Dupree is the author of 11 cookbooks, most recently "Southern Biscuits." She lives in Charleston and may be reached through Nathaliedupree.com.