Every year, Brett Wittman and Jason Marwedel compete in a Basque sausage-making contest in California's Sacramento Valley,
along with uncles, an aunt, and even Jason's mother. This is a version of their prize-winning sausage. It's a flavorful explosion
of five different kinds of chiles—four of them Spanish-style and the fifth a nod to California, ancho chile powder.
To make this sausage, you'll need a stand mixer equipped with a sausage grinder attachment (available at kitchenware stores and from amazon.com). If you want to stuff your sausages, you'll need a stuffer attachment (also available at kitchenware stores and from amazon.com) and some hog casings (pre-order from a butcher shop). It's undeniably an adventure to stuff sausages, but well worth it. If you don't feel like going to the trouble of stuffing sausages, you can form the meat into patties.
This may seem like a lot of sausage, but trust us, you will be glad, because everyone you know will want some. Both the sausages and patties freeze well.
The cousins' main piece of advice: Use the best and freshest spices possible—it really matters.
Recipe: Basque chorizo