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British Sausage Week: More than “Bangers and Mash”

Quote for Today:  War without fire is like sausage without mustard.  King Henry V
Roadtrips R Us, Richard Branson, British Food Holidays
In the U.K. our neighbors across the lake are celebrating British Sausage Week.  This year celebrity Chef Simon Rimmer kicked off the festivities by announcing Waitrose Sausages are the best retail bangers in the business.  
The Brit’s really love their sausages.  Each year they spend over half a billion pounds on sausages eating their way through more than 250,000 metric tons.  They also have more than 5,000 loyal members of the British Sausage Appreciation Society.  British sales of sausages more than double the sales of burgers and other sandwiches and 90% of their sausages are made from pork.
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London Tower Bridge

Many sausages are named for the cities, towns or areas they come from.  The Cumberland Sausage has been around for over 500 years.  The pigs from this area had a unique quality and flavor that developed over time through animal husbandry techniques.  Although they were allowed to die out in the 60’s, apparently they have made a comeback, yet they are not officially recognized as a rare breed.  These sausages are a little spicier with a chunkier, meatier texture.    
The Lincolnshire Sausage, another pork variety, is widely available and commonly dominated by sage and other herbs.  Newmarket Sausages are made from a traditional recipe from the town in Suffolk with two variations branded in the names of two different family butchers.  Each butcher has its own mix of secret herbs and spices, but both are known to be a little on the spicy side.  The Oxford Sausage, of higher learning fame, is a regal mix of pork and veal seasoned with lemon and herbs.  
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Bangers and Mash

Although sausages are used in a variety of dishes, every time I’ve been around a Brit who has not been home in a while, one of their biggest complaints is how much they miss Bangers and Mash.  This traditional English dish may be found practically everywhere in England and arguing over who makes the best is futile.  After pouring through countless menus, one concept I really liked was at Mother Mash with two locations in London.  Their menu reads: As Showaddywaddy once sang, “There are 3 Steps to Heaven” and at “Mother Mash” we tend to agree.Mother Mash London, British Sausage Week, Roadtrips R Us
 Step 1:  Choose your Mash
Cheesy Mustard
Champ – Cheddar and Spring Onion
Colcannon – Cabbage and onions
Step 2:  Choose your Main
Premium Pork
Pork & Leek
Lamb & Mint
Vegetable & Herb
Today’s Special (See Board)
Aberdeen Angus Steak
Chicken, Leek & Ham
Lamb & Rosemary
Steak & Ale
Pumpkin & Goat’s Cheese
Today’s Special (See Board)
Step 3: Choose your Gravy
Traditional – Juices from sausages and vegetables
Onion – Caramelized onions with beef stock
Farmer’s – Red Wine, onion, bacon & mushrooms
Liquor – Traditional Parsley Sauce
Veggie – With tomato puree and horseradish
 Now that’s my kind of menu.  TJ
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