How many different sausages are there


Of sausage fights and curious delicacies

You mix chopped meat, bacon, salt and various spices, sometimes also offal, blood and rind, and fill the mass in natural intestines or artificial casings. Now the whole thing has to smoke, heat, dry or mature and the sausage is ready.

Who invented them remains in the dark. But traditions make it clear that the sausage was mentioned as early as the 8th century BC: by Homer. In his "Odyssey", the poet reports on "sausage fights" that the Greeks fought. The bravest got the best sausages as a reward.

The Romans had a reputation for being true sausage lovers. Not only did they eat small sausages as a starter, but also whole roast pigs stuffed with sausages. They were particularly fond of brain sausage. The ingredients for this: brain, egg, milkweed and special spices. A delicacy for the Romans, our stomach turns today.

One thing is certain: the sausage is one of the oldest foods. As early as 5000 BC she was depicted in drawings and paintings from Egypt, Syria and China. In the origin of the word, sausage means something like "twist, mix, roll and turn something".

Refined manufacture and famous gourmets

The sausage was and is particularly popular in Germany. It is mentioned for the first time in the 11th or 12th century, when the "lebarwurst" and "pratwurst" were already known. The first butchers who worked for innkeepers appeared in the Middle Ages. This means that the manufacturing processes have also been refined more and more.

Just as the Greeks fought for sausage in ancient times, the butchers also fought sausage fights in the Middle Ages: They competed for who could make the heaviest or longest sausage and presented them to people at festivals.

Sausages were worth a lot to people back then: the treasures that had to be specially protected from thieves were stored in sausage chambers. The popularity of the sausages also brought with it regulations. Councilors stipulated how the sausages were to be made and determined which meat could go into the intestines.

The sausage was not just a treat for the "little man". There were famous sausage lovers like Friedrich the Great, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe or Martin Luther. An inglorious legend circulates about the latter: Luther enjoyed his bratwurst in a restaurant near Erfurt. Then he left the tavern, but without paying.

The story leaves open whether it was hurriedly or accidentally. Thereupon it was noted in chalk on the door of the inn that Luther owed his bratwurst. This is where, according to legend, our saying today "chalk someone up" comes from.

Boiled sausages, cooked sausages, raw sausages

Luther was already a lover of sausages and it is still considered the most famous of the sausage types. In general, sausages are classified according to their production process: there are scalded sausages, cooked sausages and raw sausages.

The Boiled sausages are the most widespread with almost 800 varieties. These include the meat sausage, white sausage or Knackwurst. The scalded sausages are - true to their name - scalded. Their raw mass, the so-called sausage meat, is very fine, mostly made from pork, beef or veal.

Cooked sausages have around 350 different varieties. They are made from pre-cooked meat and, depending on the type, offal, blood or rind. Blood sausages and liver sausages belong to the group.

Raw sausages, of which there are over 500 varieties, consist of raw beef, pork or lamb. They are preserved by long drying or smoking. Raw sausages have the longest shelf life. These include, for example, the meat and tea sausages and salami.

The triumphant advance of the bratwurst

The bratwurst is a very special kind of sausage. In terms of their production, they are similar to boiled sausages. It is mostly made from fresh, raw pork - and fried on the grill or in the pan. Who came up with this idea? The Thuringians and the Franks have been arguing about this since ancient times.

The Thuringians have the oldest documented mention: a sausage bill from 1404. The author and trained forester Heinrich Höllerl comes to the conclusion: "The sausage is a Franconian" - that is the title of his book, published in 2004, in which he describes the history of the sausage has followed up.

Accordingly, the origin lies with the Celts, who discovered the bratwurst. From there it made its way via Rome to the home region. It is said to have been the Franks who cultivated the bratwurst.

However, it did not begin its triumphant advance until the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century with industrialization. Finally there were large machines for processing; in addition, the canned sausages could be shipped worldwide.

Every region has its sausages: Coburg, Franconian, Hessian, North German, Nuremberg, Silesian, Thuringian and, and, and ... There are almost 50 different types in Germany alone. How they differ: for example in size. A Coburger measures up to 32 centimeters, a Nuremberg one only eight to nine.

And of course in the spice mix: Mostly marjoram, salt and pepper are part of it, the Thuringian also contains caraway. There are fine sausages, in which the mass is chopped up in what is known as a cutter. With the coarse sausages, on the other hand, the filling is only turned through the meat grinder. The Silesian Bratwurst is a fine one - the Thuringian, the Hessian or the Franconian, for example, are coarse.

The WHO classifies sausages as carcinogenic

In mid-2015, a study by the World Health Organization (WHO) caused a sensation. In a meta-study based on over 800 individual studies, the researchers from the International Agency for Research on Cancer found evidence that the consumption of processed meat significantly increases the risk of developing colon cancer.

There also appears to be a link between sausage consumption and pancreatic and prostate cancer.