Fresh sausages are made of raw meat produce. As they contain minced meat, fresh sausages have a short shelf life. Grill, fry or boil them on the day of purchase or no later than the day after. They can be kept in the freezer for around three months. As well as meat, fresh sausages contain liquids, which could be anything from stock, wine, water or milk. Examples of fresh sausages include pork sausages, salsiccia and merguez.
Emulsified sausages contain finely minced meat mixed with water into a fine paste. The paste emulsifies – i.e. the water and fat mix together – thanks to the molecular structure of the meat's protein. Straight after stuffing, the sausages are heat treated and so they are pre-cooked when they reach your shopping basket. They have a shelf life of approximately 7–10 days, 3 months frozen.
The majority of sausages available in shops are emulsified sausages, such as Falukorv, wieners, weisswurst, frankfurters etc.
Air dried sausages are sausages that have been conserved by reducing their water content so much that bacteria can no longer survive. Often, dried sausages will also go through a souring process, where lactobacilli are added to avoid the growth of bacteria. This can be noticed in the taste when you eat a genuine Swedish isterband sausage, for example. Other air dried sausages include salami and Swedish “spickekorv”. Store these sausages in the fridge or freezer.
Smoked sausages are pre-cooked sausages. Cold smoking exposes the sausage to smoke below 30 degrees Celsius for periods lasting anything from a few hours to several weeks. Hot smoked sausages are ready after just a few hours. In the hot smoking process, the smoke can reach temperatures up to 90 degrees Celsius. As a result, the sausages are left with a smoky taste and can be stored for longer periods. Wieners, hot dogs, isterband and Falukorv are examples of hot smoked sausages. Cold smoked sausages include mettwurst, smoked mettwurst and salami.
Bangers – British sausages made of pork with a tendency to burst open when fried, hence the name.
Boudin – a type of sausage originating from France. It is available in different types, most often made from pork.
Baconwurst – sausage flavoured with bacon, using a bratwurst base. Sibylla's version contains 75 per cent meat.
Bratwurst – German sausage, containing veal, pork or beef. It is often fried and eaten with bread and sauerkraut.
Bräckkorv – a hot smoked Swedish sausage that is meant to be lightly fried.
Chilli sausage – hot and spicy sausage. Sibylla's version gets its fiery taste from fresh chilli.
Chorizo – a spicy Spanish sausage which gets its flavour and colour from red paprika.
Currywurst – German sausages based on a bratwurst. Sibylla's version is seasoned with coriander, turmeric, ginger and mace.
Falukorv – a Swedish sausage made of pork and beef. One of three Swedish food products with special EU protected status: Guaranteed traditional speciality.
Isterband – a Swedish classic, with a sour taste. Amongst other ingredients, isterband contains pearl barley.
Kabanos – a thin, spicy Polish sausage that gives a kick to casseroles or salads.
Kolbász – a Hungarian sausage with spices and meat ground to various textures. It is often seasoned with red paprika.
Merguez – an African, spicy sausage with chilli seasoning, often made from lamb or mutton.
Prinskorv – a Swedish deli sausage which should be 5–7 cm in size. Made of beef, veal or pork.
Salami – a salted, air dried sausage originating from countries such as Italy and Hungary. Eaten as a snack, a sandwich filling or in casseroles.
Salsiccia – an Italian pork sausage, often a little bit plump and made of coarsely ground meat and seasoned with white wine and garlic.
Stångkorv – a semi-thick Swedish unsmoked sausage, made of pork, pearl barley, herbs and spices.
Triple Pepper Cheese – Sibylla's new sausage, made of 70 percent meat, flavoured with cheese and seasoned with three types of pepper: pink, green and black.
Vienna sausage – characteristic of Swedish hot dog stands and outdoor barbecues. In Vienna, they call them frankfurters.
Andouille – a hickory smoked pork sausage seasoned with thyme that originated in France.
Chipolata – sausage seasoned with chipotle, dried smoked chilli. Often made with pork and onions with herbs such as sage and coriander.
Start by taking the sausages out of the fridge a few hours in advance – try not to put sausages on the barbecue directly from the fridge.
Wait until the charcoals are at a medium heat. First, crisp the sausages by placing them at the centre of the barbecue, turning them until the outside is nice and evenly browned. Then to finish cooking the sausages, place them over indirect heat towards the edges of the barbecue.
Do your sausages usually split? Pierce or slice the sausage skin a little bit before placing them on the barbecue. This releases a little bit of the liquid, preventing the sausages from swelling and bursting over the heat.
Remember that fresh sausages need to be cooked at a lower temperature for a longer time to be cooked properly. Most other sausages are already cooked before you buy them.
A simple party trick for your barbecue: Slide a skewer through the sausage from one end to the other. Slice the sausage from tip to tip all the way down to the skewer, using a spiral motion. Remove the skewer and place the sausage spiral on the barbecue. The sausage will cook faster and you get to impress your guests.
For starters, never boil sausages. Sausages are best cooked by simmering them over a low heat, and never use a lid. Otherwise the skin will split. The majority of sausages are pre-cooked. Thin sausages need 3–4 minutes, thicker sausages are ready after around 5 minutes. A full pork or meat sausage must be cooked for around 15 minutes. Try to take the sausages out of the fridge a few hours before cooking them, so they aren't too cold.
Why not add a few bay leaves and whole peppercorns to the water? Add some salt if you wish. Try cooking the sausages in beer instead of water.
Raw sausages need to simmer for much longer. Rinse the sausage first and then place it in the pan. Cover with cold water and season as suggested above. Some people also add raw onions to the water. Bring the water to the boil over a low heat so the sausage swells. Then let it simmer for approximately 30–45 minutes depending on its size – from the usual pork and meat sausages, to the thickest Swedish Värmlandskorv.
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