Tuesday 6 November 2012

British Sausage Week - Sausage Brunch Squeak with Mazzafegati Sausages by The Fruitpig Company

Come stai?

It's British Sausage Week 2012, and every day we're trying out one of Al Murray's official BSW recipes, using some fabulous sausages specially chosen for the job.  Day two is of course Tuesday and I’ve paired up some Mazzafegati sausage from The Fruitpig Company with Al’s recipe called Sausage Brunch Squeak.

This is how the Rate My Sausage version looked.

And here’s how it “should” be done....(photo and recipe with kind permission of BPEX)....


  • 4 Chunky traditional pork sausages
  • 454g (1lb) Potatoes, peeled and cut into small chunks
  • Splash of milk
  • Knob of butter
  • 1 x 5mlsp (1tsp) Vegetable oil
  • 4 Chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • 50g (2oz) Black pudding, cut into chunks
  • 8 Cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 2 Eggs


  • Place potatoes in a pan of boiling water and cook until tender. Drain and roughly mash with milk and butter.
  • Heat oil in a small (1 person) frying pan (either make 2 small or 1 large ’squeak’) add 2 sausages and half the mushrooms per person. Cook until sausages are starting to brown. Add half the black pudding and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add half the mash and lightly mix with the pan mixture. Add 4 cherry tomatoes. Place under a preheated grill and continue to cook for about 5 minutes until everything is golden brown. Repeat
  • Meanwhile boil a small pan of water, once boiling turn off the heat, crack 2 eggs into the water and poach for about 5-6 minutes – for soft boil
  • Serve each ‘brunch’ topped with a poached egg.

In the run-up to BSW I was contacted by the fragrant Matt Cockin, the Don of the Fruitpig Company, one of our very favourite sausage producers.  Fruitpig claimed the two top spots in our 2010 Sausage Of The Year contest, courtesy of their Rare-Breed-Sausage and Toulouse-Sausage so any novel addition to their arsenal is eagerly anticipated round these here parts.  Matt  despatched a pack of his new mazzafegati sausages across the Cambs/Norfolk border, and they could not have arrived at a more opportune moment.  They were delivered by one of Don Porceone’s capo di capos, Grant, in his Maserati van, on the same day that I was pairing sausage week recipes with sausages.   The obvious match-up with the Brunch Squeak dish was too good to be true, the deep, dark flavours seemed made for each other.  Did it turn out that way? 

Oh, si.

Si, si and thrice si!  Mama mia, your papa would kill for this feast to appear on his breakfast table.  Or at least pay one of the boys to kill on his behalf.  If you like intense and rustic tastes this is the one for you, and for me the chance to pair Fruitpig’s masterful mazzafegati with black pudding and flavoursome chestnut mushrooms  was irresistible.  What a combination.  The recipe itself is simplicity in a pan, pretty much a simple “chop ‘em and plop ‘em” job that even a parma ham-fisted “somaro” like me can’t spoil.  The only potential downfall is the poaching of the eggs, but it just so happens that I’m somewhat of an expert in this particular field, having exhaustively tested twelve different methods of egg poaching a few years ago.  The winning method used the swirl technique, lemon juice as the acid addition, and a poaching time of 225 seconds.  Give or take.

Back to today’s dish, it’s a simply sensational breakfast, filling and fabulously satisfying.  Tastier than Silvio’s personal assistant at a bunga-bunga party.  Yes, THAT good.  Please, per favore, if you decide to actually have a go at any of this week’s dishes in your own kitchen, make it this one.  Incredibilmente buono....

Having established that the recipe is a good one, let me tell you about le salcisse di signore Cockin.  They were very nearly perfect.

Meat-wise they’re a hunter-gatherer’s dream, firm and fabulous logs of prime piggosaurus.  Listed at 70% pork, but the outstanding provenance of the rare breed meat sings out sweet and strong.  In my notes, under Flavour I wrote “where do I start?”.  I decided on “incredible”.  Rich.  Gamey?  Sweet.  I didn’t cheat by reading the label prior to eating, and guessed the up-front sweetness may be honey, may be sweet onion, but decided it was there for all to see, yellow knobbles of capsicum.   I was wrong of course, the label tells of the presence of apricot.  When the sweet deep porkiness subsides you’re treated to an altogether more grown-up flavour following on and charming your tastebuds, liver maybe, something in the offal area?  Kidney!  No.....

It was liver after all.  I was right on that one.  Mazzafegati is traditionally a pork liver sausage from Umbria.  The flavours here are dynamic and decadent, and they’re not let down by the texture.  It’s perfect.  Slice one and marvel for yourself.  It falls apart with even the merest of encouragement, it’s surely the blueprint for how all sausages should be made.  The skins are the real deal too, and peel back provocatively then sliced.


Average weight uncooked - 85g
Average weight cooked - 80g

Shrinkage - 6%

Just when you thought they couldn’t get any better....six percent is exceptional.

Value For Money:

£5.72 for five sausages, weighing 426g - this works out as a price of £13.00 per kg, or £1.14p per snorker.  The highest priced banger ever reviewed here, but the best.

Through A Child’s Eyes:

Even if there was no alcohol at all, there is NO WAY Junior Sidekick was getting his gnashers on these....

Rate My Sausage Star Verdict (out of five):

Recipe:     * * * * *

Sausages:    * * * * * *   (yes, six)

As Jeff Stelling might say, they’ll be dancing in the streets of Mazzafegati tonight....

No comments: