Monday, 28 July 2008

Scottish Scran 1 - Square Sausage

Well - as it says on the profile, I'm a Scots lass living in England... and being the experimental type I have cooked many different cuisines over the years. However, one nation that I just haven't made much of an effort with is my own!

So I am starting a new challenge - to blog something Scottish every week or two, to prove it isn't all about deep-fried mars bars, pizza crunch and heart disease...

This will be a learning experience for me - I don't know nearly as much about Scotland's cuisine as I should - but I am looking forward to finding out!

The first recipe on my list is my favourite ever Scottish foodstuff... square sausage, sliced sausage or lorne sausage - depending on where you're from. A slice on square (a slice of plain Scottish bread, with a slice of square sausage, and a daub of broon sauce) is the ultimate morning-after breakfast, and something I look forward to (almost!) as much as seeing my family at Christmas!

Right, so I couldn't get Scottish plain bread, but ciabatta - with its chewy texture and savoury taste makes a decent alternative!

It's an easy recipe - mixture of ground beef and pork, mixed with breadcrumbs and spices, cut into a handy square shape, just right for putting on a roll. It also forms the basis of my family's own version of stovies - recipe to follow!

Square Sausage

Sliced and Ready for Storage
  • 2 lbs minced beef - not too lean!
  • 2 lbs minced pork
  • 1 tsp onion salt
  • 2 tsp pepper, freshly ground
  • 2 tsp nutmeg, freshly grated
  • 4 tsp coriander berries, toasted and ground
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 3 cups bread crumbs
  • Water as required
Right... I thought about doing this in my mixer... but there was just too much of it!! So - wash your hands really well, roll your sleeves up to the elbow, and be prepared to get stuck right in...

Mix the breadcrumbs with the spices and salt. Then using your hands, combine the two meats reasonably well. Mix both the breadcrumb mix and and the meat together and combine really well. If the mixture is too dry add a little water - no more than a cup though.

Now you want to pack it into the container that will shape your final 'sausage'. I used a weighing tray - measuring about 25cm * 18cm * 8cm. I lined it with clingfilm first to make it easier to remove, then packed the mixture into it as much as I could. There was some of the mixture left over - I'll tell you what I did with that later!

Cover the mixture tightly, put a weight on top, and put into the freezer for at least an hour - no more than 2! To weight it I used a hardback book, with a

Remove from the freezer and turn out from the container. Cut the block in half lengthways, then use a really sharp knife to cut slices. I don't think my breadcrumbs were fine enough - I think if they had been finer/dryer the slices would have stayed formed slightly better.

I decided to freeze my sausage in packs of four slices, separated by greaseproof paper, then wrapped in film - this makes it really easy to take some out.
Oooops - so maybe my slicing needs perfecting!

Ps. in case you were wondering about the title - scran is Scottish for food!

That I may be blest wi’ health, And scran.

Robert Wilson, Poems Chiefly in the Scottish Dialect (1824)

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glamah16 said...

Who is eating all this wonderful meat? I hope your giving a huge party or freezing it. Looking forward to more Scottish recipes.

Peter M said...

Good new feature for your blog, Kittie...we need to learn more about Scottish food.

To add my ow twist to this dish, I cut the sausage into diamond shapes! ;)

Dee said...

Great idea about the Scottish food blogging. Great recipe, and no sausage casings, hooray!
But what is broon sauce?

Lynda said...

I've just found your delightful blog today via "Blog Catalog" & will definitely be back - I'd love to learn more about Scottish cooking & also to find out what broon sauce is ... it sounds most interesting !
Bye for now
Lynda, Kilimanjaro, East Africa

kittie said...

coco - It's in the freezer for now, but I think I might have a stovie party soon (!)

peter - you alsways have to go one better, dontcha?? ;)

dee - broon is Scots for brown! Now what is brown sauce you ask?? Well, it's a savoury sauce made with malt vinegar, fruit and spices. And the best one (IMO!) is HP sauce!!

thanks for stopping by Lynda - your farm is beautiful, and I look forward to checking out your recipes!!

Fearless Kitchen said...

In the US, Scottish food has a sort of dubious reputation. I'm very glad to see that it's not entirely deserved! This looks very tasty and I'm looking forward to more tasty Scottish recipes.

Jen said...

I love sausage... your sausage roll looks so much tastier than my lunch...

Mike of Mike's Table said...

You made me realize how little I know of Scottish food. Can't wait to see more of it!

Neen said...

You know, I read the first paragraph of this post and realized that I know nothing about Scottish food... worse, I tend to confuse it with Irish food! (mea culpa, mea culpa!) So I'm looking forward to this new resolution of yours.

kittie said...

fk - it has that reputation even in Scotland - and is at least partially deserved... but there are a lot of positives too!

Jen, I don't know what you were having for lunch - but I'll bet mine was tastier ;)

mike - I hope you like the rest of my recipes (the fear is that I promote Scottish food... and everyone hates it anyway ;)

neen!! Irish food? Let the education commence ;)

Foodycat said...

This amazes me! I work with a lot of Scots and they all rave about square sausage (and how much better butcher's is than supermarket). I will have to give it a go and dazzle them.

Next up, can you do a definitive mince & tatties? I have heard of it but never tried it!

kittie said...

Foodycat - you pipped me to the post... I was thinking about M&T just yesterday - it's on the list! I haven't had it for years, but have a bit of a yearning for it now!!

Ps. If you make square sausage for your Scottish friends they will absolutely love you forever!!

Anonymous said...

My future husband introduced me to LOTS of wonderful food - especially the Square Sausage with Brown Sauce!! We have a place in Philadelphia and one in Paisley, near the Glasgow airport. I LOVE waking up to his breakfasts!! SO glad I found this site!! He is a native Scot and cooks for me all the time!! I consider myself one lucky girl!!

Anonymous said...

gyjhsmrDo deep fried mars bars!

kittie said...

anon#1 - so glad you like it!

anon#2 - it would be churlish not to, wouldn't it... ;)

Foodycat said...

OK, will gie it a go. I am already planning a cranachan for this month's foody joust *shhhhhh* ;)

Anonymous said...

I 1st saw this recipe 12 years ago when I lived in Hong Kong. the only differences were 1tsp of clove powder,1/2 tsp of cayene pepper and use a aluminimum foil tray. it worked well.between that and managing to make my own tattie scones, i was in 7th heaven

Tom said...

Going to get the ingredients now... Just reading this is making me hungry!

berny said...

We have just made venison burgers and sausage they were briiiant.