Thursday, April 17, 2008


So, what's the deal with sausages?
There's a bit of a love-hate thing going on there with me.
Some of them make me feel really sick. Those are the ones packed with MSG and cereal filler, the cheap ones, usually from the supermarket.
Sausages are easy meat.
Sausages are a cheap meal: ubiquitous and simply-cooked. Sausages are not usually trustworthy, meatwise, either. Sausages are how butchers use up all the stuff no one wants to buy or look at in its natural form. Who knows what lurks within the depths of some of them...
Sausages are what you see sizzling at the dodgiest fete stall and on the grottiest backyard barbecue. Sausages can be pale, greasy, spitty, partly-charred tubes of meat-flavoured by-products, eaten by the lowest common denominator, cared for not particularly by anyone.

On the other hand, I have had some really special and wonderful sausage experiences. The thin, hot and flavour-packed merguez sausages from North Africa, sliced and layered over a huge square sheet of pale cheesy pizza, bought from a seedy street food vendor in the back streets of Marseille, saved me many a dime in cheap lunches and delivered a straight shot of authentic Southern France to my veins.
The Marseille locals also came up with merguez-frites: a sandwich stuffed with the spicy lamb sausage and a handful of hot chips, sometimes plus sauce. Just check out the merguez on the menu of this Manhattan restaurant (merguez burger and so on) named after the port town.
Sausages do feature in many of the world's most popular street foods, so they must be high on many people's list.
And then there's the English Cumberland sausage, said by some to be up there with the world's best.
Personally, I find it hard to go past a dried, preserved, salty sausage, but the fresh ones are a bit of a hit and miss with me. Ones that I do like:
  • The Coles Premium brand of gourmet sausages. They aren't all that dissimilar from each other, but they are reassuringly chunky and flavoursome.

  • A good fresh chorizo.

  • A tender chicken sausage.

  • The range stocked by the Annerley Butcher on Ipswich Rd. They have won some sort of state sausage championship for several years in a row, and you can see why.

  • Ones that don't mess around with the flavourings too much.

Heinz Butcher Shop on Stanley St at Woolloongabba makes fresh merguez, chorizo, Cumberland, pork and lots more sausages fresh onsite. Left to right: merguez, Italian fennel, Danish, Cumberland.

So who likes sausages? Who hates them? Who has some tips for good sausage shopping?


Rabbit Sim said...

I love sausages! Right now I like sweet pork sausages and Irish sausages from Superior Meat in Holland Park (959 Logan Rd).
Most sausages I tried before had thick skin which feel synthetic like and rubbery but those at Superior are proper thin casings.
Other meat products also worth a look. And there's also a seafood counter adjoining.

Pinky said...

You're right, Superior Meats are good. I will have to try their sausages.
I remember seeing somewhere in the past week with a sign out the front: merguez / cumberland / chorizo etc all made on the premises- but I forget where I saw it!
Oh well, either someone will enlighten me or I will remember.

Anonymous said...

Try Dayboro. He's like the Kel Night of sausages.