Thursday, 4 June 2015


The event of cookery went well - the food was served at the right temperatures and on time, everyone seemed happy with it, and we hit the sweet spot of just enough leftovers that people had clearly eaten their fill but not so much there was a ton of wasted food. And the best part was that we in the kitchen actually had fun and got to participate in some of the other activities.

Rather than write up the whole feast as a single massive post, I'm going to do it one dish at a time. First up, fried sausages!

This is a slightly tweaked version of Peter Brears' sausage recipe (2015, p. 356), which is itself an amalgamation of three 17th-century recipes. I've increased the amount of black pepper, because I find that fatty sausages cooked in their own fat need the extra bite not to tasty greasy and gross.

  • 1 kg lean pork
  • 0.5 kg pork fat
  • 1 tsp ground mace
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 rounded tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp dried sage
Coarsely grind the pork and the fat together through a meat grinder**. Grind all the seasonings together with a mortar and pestle until they are well mixed and of the same size. Pour over the ground meat and run through the grinder again to combine.

Brears recommends rolling the sausage meat out into logs if one isn't using casings, but in order to fit more into the frying pans I rolled them into balls instead.

Fry the sausages over a medium heat until they are cooked through and nicely browned. I didn't add any extra fat to the frying pan, as without casings some of the fat from the meat inevitably renders out.

Yield: about 100 walnut-sized sausage balls.

These may well be the tastiest sausages I've ever eaten, and as my mother used to make her own, I've tried a lot of different kinds.

*A Pratchett-ism that has slipped into the family lexicon.
**You could of course just mince the meat by hand, but if there's a meat grinder to hand I'd use that. It's faster. Alternatively, go find a nice butcher, give them your spice blend, and ask them to grind up the meat in the right ratio with the spices.

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