Tag: Sausages of Europe

Legendary Dishes | Fricadelles Maison (home-made sausages)


The fricadelle has it origins in Europe in 1837 and 40 years later it was known in America where a recipe called fricatelli was featured in Buckeye Cookery and Practical Housekeeping published by the Buckeye Publishing Company of Minneapolis and Ohio. This was a book of recipes by home cooks. The fricatelli recipe was contributed by Mrs. W. F. W.

Chop raw fresh pork very fine, add a little salt, plenty of pepper, and two small onions chopped fine, half as much bread as there is meat, soaked until soft, two eggs; mix well together, make into oblong patties, and fry like oysters. These are nice for breakfast; if used for supper, serve with sliced lemon.

Mrs W’s recipe resolves the issue over the quantity of bread, which appears excessive until it is compared with the meatball tradition and the answer to the question, ‘what is a frikadelle?’

It is a meatball AND it is a sausage.

In Denmark the frikadeller is a meatball.

In Liechtenstein the frikadellen is a meatball served in a bread roll.

  • 450 ml milk
  • 300 g cooked chicken, minced
  • 300 g minced meat (from beef, pork, veal)
  • 250 g bread, soaked in the milk, drained, squeezed
  • 150 g onions, cut into small dice
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 sprigs marjoram, chopped small
  • 3 sprigs parsley, chopped small
  • Nutmeg, 5 gratings
  • Flour, for rolling sausages
  • Vegetable oil, for frying

Fry onions in oil in a small frying pan for five minutes, reduce heat to low, cover pan with a plate and leave to sweat for 15 minutes.

Place the soaked bread in a bowl. Add the chicken and meat, eggs, onions, herbs, nutmeg and seasonings.

Work into a homogenous mass, form into long sausages, roll in flour, fry on all sides in a pan with sufficent oil.

Serve warm with homemade potato fries and choice of sauce or with mitraillette.

Legendary Dishes | Holländische Frikandel (Dutch minced meat sausages)


These sausages are enigmatic because they have a curious history. In Belgium and northern France they are called fricadelles, in other areas of France boulette de viande hachée (minced meat ball). However in the Netherlands they are called something else, so bear with us for a few minutes while we explain the history of these enigmatic sausages.

  • 500 g beef, minced
  • 500 g pork, minced
  • 500 g chicken / turkey, minced
  • 200 ml chicken / meat jelly
  • 3 eggs
  • 175 g breadcrumbs
  • 100 g onion, chopped small, blended into a pureé with garlic
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped small, blended into a pureé with onion
  • 3 tbsp dried herbs
  • 3 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika powder
  • 1 nutmeg, grated
  • 15 cloves, blended or pounded into powder
  • 1 tsp allspice powder
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds, blended or pounded into powder
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3 pieces of clingfilm 30 cm x 20 cm

In a large bowl knead the garlic-onion pureé, seasonings and spices into the minced meat for about ten minutes. Add the eggs and jelly, work into the meat mixture. Finally fold in the breadcrumbs to form a homegenous mixture.

Arrange a sheet of clingfilm on a clean surface. With moist hands place 100 grams of the mixture in the centre of the clingfilm. Wrap the clingfilm over the mixture, shape into 15 cm long sausages. Repeat until all the mixture is used up. Replace the clingfilm after seven sausages.

Preheat oven to 200ºC. Bake the sausages for 35 minutes.

Legendary Dishes | Mešano Meso (mixed grill)

Mixture for the mixed grill dish called cevap

Serbia is a culinary gateway. It leads in various directions to the fabulous food of the people who have inhabited the Balkan lands for thousands of years.

The Ottoman influence is still present but as each of the Balkan countries and regions assert their own cultural identities in the fast lanes of the 21st century, the slow food of past centuries becomes prominent. Among these are the methods used to cook meat, especially beef, chicken, pork and veal.

At Cevap kod Dekija on Strahinjića Bana 71 in old Belgrade, between the Danube and Sava rivers, they make the argument that the grill does not always indicate fast food. ‘It is one of the best and healthiest ways to prepare meat,’ they say and it is hard to argue with them or with this food identity.

beef rissoles

Their specialties, made with high quality cuts and products of beef and veal cooked over beech charcoal, epitomise the mešano meso culture of Serbia. These include burgers, sausages and the rissoles known as cevap and ćevapčiči made from ground beef and seasonings.

Cevap / Ćevapčići

  • 1 kg beef, minced
  • 45 ml water
  • 10 g sweet paprika, ground
  • 10 g salt
  • 10 g pepper
  • Olive oil, for greasing

Bring all ingredients together in a large bowl and knead until the fat in the meat starts to separate onto the hands. Leave to stand for an hour in a cold place.

Shape into croquettes, about 10 cm long, 3 cm thick.

Oil a grill and place them together without touching each other. Grill, turning several times, until they are cooked.

Serve with onions and paprika in lepinje.

Food Products — Mettwürst (smoked sausage)


A cold smoked raw sausage made with beef, pork and spices, the mettwürst is defined by its subtle differences and regional variations. The length of smoking determines its fate, a long smoke results in a hard sausage, a short smoke in a soft sausage. The hard versions are used in soups and stews, the soft versions in salads and snacks.

The mettwürst is associated with numerous traditional dishes, the bean and sausage soup of Luxembourg and surrounding regions, the kale and sausage dish of north-west Germany, the pot stew of Austria and Germany and dishes that require a sausage that will hold its shape during the cooking process.

Culinary Connections | Sausage Preparations


Amêijoas na Cataplana

The cataplana is a clam-shaped copper utensil for cooking light stews. A large wide saucepan is an admirable substitute.

The clams favoured by the Portuguese are medium-sized, anything smaller like the Italian vongole or larger like the Atlantic scallop won’t work with this dish.

The preferred place of cooking is outside, a half-moon on the horizon.

  • 1.5 kg clams, soaked in salt water
  • 500 g tomatoes, blanched, skinned, diced
  • 500 g chorizo, thick sliced
  • 150 g onions, chopped
  • 100 ml dry white wine
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 50 ml olive oil
  • Salt, large pinch
  • Black Pepper, large pinch
  • Parsley, for garnish
  • Pimento, flakes, for garnish

Sauté garlic and onion over a low heat for ten minutes.

Turn up heat, pour wine and reduce for five minutes.

Add tomatoes, bring to boil. Add chorizo.

Turn heat down, simmer for ten minutes.

Remove clams from brine, rinse in cold water.

Add to tomato mixture, cook for ten minutes until clams open.

Serve immediately. Garnish with parsley and pimento flakes.

Zuurkool met Worst

Traditionally this dish was made with fresh sausages, potatoes and sauerkraut. The sauerkraut was simmered in salted water for 30 minutes, then sliced potatoes and whole sausages were added until cooked.

White beans replaced potatoes in some recipes.

Gradually this recipe morphed into a stamppot. The potatoes were mashed after being cooked. Onions were fried with smoked bacon in butter. The sausages were fried and braised.

Modern versions of zuurkool met worst tend to be bittersweet and savoury.

  • 700 g smoked sausage, thick sliced
  • 600 g sauerkraut, rinsed, drained
  • 2 apples, cored, peeled, diced
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 100 g bacon, diced
  • 75 g brown sugar
  • 15 g caraway seeds
  • 6 juniper berries
  • Butter, for greasing

In a heavy bottomed pot place apple, caraway, juniper, sauerkraut and sugar, bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for two hours over a low heat.

Preheat oven to 160°C. Grease a wide baking tray.

Fry bacon and onion over a high heat until both are crispy and caramelised. Add to sauerkraut mixture.

Fry sausage pieces over a high heat.

Add to sauerkraut mixture.

Pour into tray, bake for an hour.

Pollo Colle Salsicce

Nineteenth century Europe for those with land was a place of plenty.

Everything was produced on the farm – cottage and farm cheeses, cured pork, potted meat, terrines and the like, and most of all home-made sausages.

These became essential ingredient in sauces and stews.

One recipe was ubiquitous, sautéed chicken with sausages, largely because it was made with home produce, and chickens were plentiful.

Across Europe there were countless variations.

This is an adaptation of one recipe collected by Pellegrino Artusi in his Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well.

‘Chop half an onion very fine and put it in a saucepan with a bit of butter and four or five thin slices of prosciutto about a finger in width. On top of these ingredients put a whole chicken. Season with pepper and a little salt, and put on the fire. When it has browned all over and the onion has completely dissolved, moisten with broth or water and add three or four freshly-made whole sausages. Cook over a slow fire, making sure some liquid remains at the end.’

  • 1.5 kg chicken, whole
  • 250 ml chicken broth
  • 6 pork sausages
  • 1 onion
  • 6 slices prosciutto
  • 15 g butter
  • Oil, for frying
  • Black Pepper
  • Salt

Wrap chicken in prosciutto, carefully brown in oil, turning several times in a wide saucepan. Season.
In a large deep pot, sauté onion in butter for 20 minutes.

Put chicken into pot, add broth, bring to boil, cover and simmer for an hour.

Add sausages and simmer until chicken is cooked, about 30 minutes.


THE GREAT EUROPEAN FOOD ADVENTURE | Kandersteg | Schüpbach Butcher Shop

Dauerwurst from Kandersteg

It is early morning and Hans Schüpbach is busy making the last of his summer sausages. ‘We are closing at the end of the week,’ he says, turning from the shop counter display of cured and fresh meats and sausages into the back of his metzgerei (butcher’s shop). His sentiments remain unspoken. The icy grip of winter is apon us.

Sausages – air-dried, cooked, smoked and raw – dominate Swiss food culture more than you would image. They are everywhere. They provide a backdrop to the seasons, at barbecues, festivals and markets, where they are eaten cold with cheese or hot with bread and sometimes hot with cheese wrapped in bacon.

The training centre for the Swiss meat industry in Spiez list 76 varieties, grouping them into categories, vis:

Brühwurst / Charcuterie Échaudée
(Meat for Cooking, eg bratwürst and cervelas)

Kochwurst / Charcuterie Cuite
(Cooked Meat, eg blutwürst and leberwürst)

Rohwurst / Charcuteries Crues à Maturation
(Raw Meat Cured, eg dauerwürst and hauswürst)

Schüpbach specialises in cervelas, a smoked cooked sausage made with assorted butcher’s meat, and in dauerwürst, a cured sausage made with pork, beef, red wine, black pepper and coriander.

His cervelas contains beef, bacon and water, with the emphasis on the beef. Traditionally cervelas (also called cervelat) were made with pork, veal and bacon, and while some butchers still prefer to match pork meat with beef meat, these days the sausage is almost one-third beef.

Metzgerei are an endangered species in Switzerland. Mass production of sausages like cervelas and bratwürst allow the supermarkets to offer promotions on the price.

The differences between cervelas and bratwürst can be subtle. Both are made with an emulsion of ice water and meat, pork or veal in the bratwürst. One is long, the other is short. Aromatic seasonings are the preserve of the butcher. St Galler bratwürst stand out because milk replaces the water.

St Galler Bratwürst

In winter, especially outside during the festive season, bratwürst is served with a bread bun at kiosks and stalls. Mustard is a necessary condiment in the alpine regions. Inside, in the cafes and restaurants, these delicious fat sausages are accompanied by rösti and served with a mushroom or onion sauce.

This is the recipe for a more rustic cervelas.

  • 600 g lean beef, minced
  • 460 ml ice water
  • 440 g fatty pork belly, minced
  • 300 g bacon, cubed small
  • 200 g pork neck, minced
  • 20 g salt
  • 1 tbsp heaped dried marjoram
  • 10 g onions, diced
  • 5 g black pepper
  • 5 g garlic, crushed
  • Cinnamon, ground, large pinch
  • Cloves, ground, large pinch
  • Ginger, ground, large pinch
  • Nutmeg, large pinch
  • Pork Casings

Blitz all the ingredients in a food processor.

Stuff into sausage casings, twist at 36 mm.

Smoke over a fire at no more than 80°C and no lower than 50°C for 20 minutes three times.

Cook in water, 75°C, for 25 minutes.

Cool in ice cold water.

This is an extract from The Great European Food Adventure. A version is also included in Blue Window | Culinary Adventures in the Alps.