Ever since my experiment with a Pickled Meal in a Jar I’ve been looking for a commercial source of pickled sausage for a reality check. This week I finally found one, a jar of Jerry’s Pickled Kielbasa at Oscar’s Smokehouse in Warrensburg, NY. Oscar’s is a well-regarded local distributor whose products are seen at better markets around the Saratoga area, and I know they wouldn’t put it on the shelf if they didn’t consider it a worthy example of the category.
So how is it? Tastes like kielbasa that’s been sitting in a spicy vinegar brine, that’s how. Once you get past the outer layer there is no “pickling” vs. preserving effect. But the preserving is important since, while a sausage might last a long time in the refrigerator, the outside might get either dried out or moldy depending on the moisture level.
These are going to be just fine for a very long time, so if you see a jar on a bar top I’d say dig in. If you want to make pickled kielbasa (or another sausage) at home I recommend you start with cooked kielbasa and submerge in your favorite brine, then refrigerate.