WILL TRUMP BAN OUR MERGUEZ SAUSAGES ?
President Trump is nothing if not entertaining and his recent ban on visas of people from seven Middle East countries has been equally applauded and derided around the world.
If Mr President is on a banning spree two products already made the list of illegal items include Kinder eggs, the ones with a toy in the centre, and traditionally made Scots Haggis.
We are no strangers in the UK to banning things and people. Here it is illegal to die in the Houses of Parliament, because that entitles you to a State Funeral! The ban on Haggis is interesting, in place for hygiene reasons relating to sheep’s pluck. But there is a lot of culture in a sausage, try dishonouring a haggis on Burn’s Night in Glasgow, you’ll find out! So I wonder if there are plans to keep America safe by banning Middle Eastern sausages?
The sausage of choice throughout the region is a number of variations of the Merguez. It is a culturally sensitive sausage, sheep skins, lamb meat, sometimes lamb and beef. No pork.You can get them on almost any city street corner from Tunis in the West to Tehran in the East. From Damascus in the North to Mogadishu in the South. One version, Mirqaz dawwara is basically a thin haggis! So it might already be banned!
But if you fancy making a quiet, silent protest to all this banning of things, why not try making this old Traditional Moroccan Merguez sausage recipe below:
Ingredients you will need:
- 2 teaspoons whole cumin seed
- 2 teaspoons whole coriander seed
- 2 teaspoons whole fennel seed
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 30 g Kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1.5 Kg lamb shoulder, minced
- 250 g beef fat, cut into 3 - 4 mm pieces
- 6 - 8 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 80 ml harissa
- 80 ml ice water
- Lamb casings, soaked in 2 - changes of tepid water for 60 minutes in total
Tip: Always chill your meat, sterilise your utensils.
1, Put water in the freezer to chill and then transfer to the fridge.
2, Put your sheep skins in tepid water to soak, change the water a couple of times. A drop of oil in the last water change will make them easier to load.
3, Toast the seeds in a dry pan for 2 minuted over a medium heat and then grind in a mortar and pestle.
4, Add the salt, paprika and cayenne pepper.
5, Having ground your lamb and cut your fat place them in the refrigerator to keep cool.
6, Place the meat, fat and spices into a bowl and mix well.
7, Grind using a fine plate and transfer to the fridge to chill for 15 minutes while you load your skins onto the stuffing attachment.
8, Add the water to the meat mixture and mix well to form a sticky stuffing.
9, You can test for seasoning by cooking a small piece of the meat and adjust accordingly.
10, Stuff your sausages and link at about 4 inches.
11, Rest for 24 hours and cook, preferably on a smoky BBQ, though some variations are smoked.