SAUSAGES… Appetizer or a Quick-and-easy Meal?

The meaning of the word “Sausage” in the dictionary means “Chopped or ground meat that has been blended with spices and other seasonings and usually stuffed in natural or manufactured casings”.

The origin of meat processing is lost in antiquity but probably began when mankind learned that salt is an effective preservative. Sausage making evolved as an effort to economize and preserve meat that could not be consumed fresh at slaughter. Sausage makers use almost all parts of the animal carcass that cannot be used in other ways.

The less tender cuts and organ meats are ground, spiced and made into delicious sausages. The procedure of stuffing meat into the sausage casings remains basically the same today as in the olden days. However, sausage making has now become a culinary art and is now available in a great number of varieties and flavours. Sausages have grown in popularity over the centuries. Today more than 250 varieties of sausages are manufactured and sold worldwide. Some of these varieties can actually be traced back to the town and country of origin. The contemporary role of sausage fits conveniently into our modern lifestyles as an elegant appetizer for entertaining as well as the main course in “quick-and-easy” meals. Sausages are made from beef, veal, pork, lamb, poultry and wild game, or from any combination of these meats. Traditionally, sausages were formed into a symmetrical shape, but now they can be found in a variety of shapes and sizes to meet consumers’ needs and fancies.

There are lots of innovative ways that you could use sausages besides having them with your Toast and Eggs at Breakfast. You could slice / dice fried sausages and serve them on crackers with cheese as an appetizer.  Dice them and add in salads, soups, curries, etc. Grill the sausages and eat with a creamy garlic dip. Use them in Casseroles and Bakes with other vegetables and meats or you could just make a very delicious curry dish with them as under.

SAVOURY SAUSAGE CURRY

500 grams pork or beef (pepper) sausages      

2 big tomatoes chopped

2 large onions sliced finely                              

2 green chilies sliced lengthwise

1 teaspoon ginger paste                                    

1 teaspoon chopped garlic                          

2  tablespoons oil                                             

1 teaspoon chilly powder                             

½ teaspoon tumeric powder                             

½ teaspoon coriander powder

½ teaspoon cumin powder                                

Salt to taste

Heat oil in a pan and add the sausages and a little water. Cook on low heat till the water evaporates and the sausages turn golden brown. Remove from heat and slice the sausages into halves.

In the same oil add the onions, chopped garlic and green chillies and fry till golden brown. Add the ginger paste and fry for 2 or 3 minutes. Now add the tomatoes, turmeric, chillie powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt and fry till the tomatoes turn pulpy. Add 1 cup of water and bring to boil. Add the sliced sausages and cook on low heat till the gravy becomes thick. Serve with bread or rice

STEWED KIDNEYS

10 lamb kidneys or 1 calf kidney
4 small onions sliced finely
2 teaspoons pepper powder
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons oil
Wash and clean the kidneys and cut into small slices. Heat the oil in a pan and sauté the onions lightly. Add the kidney pieces, salt and pepper and mix well. Add 1 cup of water and cook on low heat till the kidneys are cooked. Thicken the gravy with a tablespoon of flour mixed with a little water. This dish goes well with toast and baked beans.

TROTTERS IN GRAVY

8-Trotters (mutton or pork) preferably the front ones
2-teaspoons ginger garlic paste
2-teaspoons spice powder
2-large tomatoes pureed
3-teaspoons chillie powder
2-large onions chopped
1-teaspoon coriander powder
3-tablespoons oil
Salt to taste
A small bunch of coriander leaves chopped.
Heat oil in a pressure cooker and lightly sauté the onions. Add the trotters, spice powder, chillie powder, tomato puree, coriander powder and salt and mix well. Add sufficient water and pressure cook first on high heat then on low heat for half an hour till the trotters are well cooked. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with rice or bread or even dosas or hoppers.

EGG VINDALOO

Serves 6

Preparation time 45 minutes

Ingredients

6 Hard boiled eggs shelled

2 onions chopped

2 teaspoons chilly powder

½ teaspoon turmeric powder

2 teaspoons ginger garlic paste

1- teaspoon cumin powder

½ cup tomato puree

2 pieces cinnamon

2 table spoons vinegar

1- teaspoon sugar

Salt to taste

3 tablespoons oil

Egg Vindaloo
Egg Vindaloo

Heat oil in a pan and sauté the onions till golden brown. Add the ginger garlic paste and cinnamon fry for some time. Add the chilly powder, cumin powder, turmeric powder, sugar and tomato puree and fry till the oil separates from the masala. Now add the vinegar and a little water and bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer till the gravy is sufficiently thick. Cut the boiled eggs into halves and carefully drop into the gravy. Simmer for a few minutes. Take out the egg halves and place on a serving dish. Pour the thick gravy over the eggs and shake the dish so that all the eggs are covered with the gravy. Serve hot.

MIXED VEGETABLE CURRY

Serves: 4  
Cooking time 15 minutes 
 
2  cups chopped mixed vegetables (potatoes, carrots, cauliflower, french beans, and shelled green peas)  
2  medium onions chopped    

2 teaspoons chillie powdert

1 teaspoon corriander powder

1 teaspoon cumin powder

1/2 teaspoon turneric powder          

1″ piece ginger chopped  
2  flakes garlic chopped                   

2  green chillies chopped   
             
3  tablespoons oil                              

Salt to taste  

2  tomatoes chopped finely
2 teaspoons finely chopped coriander leaves to garnish.

Parboil the chopped vegetables and keep aside. Heat oil in a pan and  Saute the onions on medium heat till the onions are transparent and soft. Now, add the chopped ginger, garlic and green chillies. Stir fry briefly for a few seconds. Add the tomatoes, and all the other ingredients. Stir fry on medium heat till the tomatoes are pulpy and all the water has evaporated and the oil has left the sides of the pan. Now, add the parboiled vegetables and salt. Mix well. Cover and cook on medium / low heat for 3  minutes or till the vegetables are fully cooked. Add the garam masala (optional) and about ½ cup of water. Simmer on very low heat for few more minutes.  
Garnish with finely chopped coriander leaves.

ANGLO-INDIAN PEPPER CHOPS

Serves 6         

Preparation time 1 hour

 

½ kg good chops either mutton, beef or pork

2 large onions sliced fine                               

2 or 3 green chilies sliced lengthwise

3 tablespoons oil                                           

2 teaspoons pepper powder

3 potatoes peeled and halved

 

Wash the chops and marinate them with the pepper powder, and salt for about 30 minutes. Heat oil in a large pan and sauté the onions and green chilies for a few minutes. Add the marinated chops and mix well.  Simmer for a few minutes till the chops get firm.  Add sufficient water and the potatoes and cook till the chops are done and the gravy dries up.  Garnish with onion rings

“Mulligatawny” or good old Anglo-Indian Pepperwater?

What would you prefer? Mulligatawny Soup or just plain A. I. Pepperwater? Mulligatawny Soup was actually the anglicized version of the Tamil “Melligu -Thani”. (“Melligu” meaning pepper and “Thanir” meaning water). As the name suggests it was originally just pepper in a watery soup.The original Mulligatawny Soup can be traced back to the early days of the East India Company in Madras to around the 18th century. It was originally a soup made with chicken or mutton/lamb stock. Mulligatawny Soup had no history in India before the British Raj. Supposedly, it was simply an invention to satisfy the Britishers, who demanded a soup course for dinner from a cuisine that had never produced one till then. The Tamil servants in those days concocted a stew like dish, that contained pepper and water on the lines of their local “Rasam” or “Melligu –Thanir. It was an interesting mix of East meets West, and was the nearest thing to soup in the cuisine of Colonial India. In course of time a lot of other ingredients such meat, chicken, coconut, turmeric and other spices were added to give it a completely different flavour. A variety of “Mulligatawnies”, then came into existence which quickly became popular throughout the Common Wealth. Recipes for mulligatawny were quickly brought back to England by the British and its popularity spread through out the country. It has made a lasting impression on British cuisine right down to the present day, though it has undergone many changes. It is still an excellent “Comfort” dish on a cold rainy day and will surely lift the spirits when one is down in the dumps. Mulligatawny Soup is now firmly entrenched not just in cookbooks but history books as well as a thick, spicy meat soup which is a wholesome meal in itself served with bread or rice. It has remained popular in the United Kingdom and is now available even in cans in some stores. The Mulligatawny Soup of today bears little resemblance to the original “MELLIGU -THANI”. And despite the name, pepper itself is not an important ingredient in the dish. Though purported to be a classic Anglo-Indian dish since it came into existence during the Colonial Era, and was very popular then, Mulligatawny is not a typical Anglo-Indian dish. The real dish we Anglo-Indians call “Pepper water” is actually closer to the Tamil Rasam than Mulligatawny. Mulligatawny ultimately culminated into our very own Breast Bone pepperwater and various other variations such Shrimp Pepperwater, Dal Pepperwater, Horsegram pepperwater, etc. Here’s a recipe for Chicken Mulligatwany as well as our good old Pepper Water. Enjoy!!!!!!!

CHICKEN MULLIGATAWNY

Serves 6 Preparation time 45 minutes

½ kg chicken chopped into medium size pieces

1-teaspoon chilly powder 2-teaspoons pepper powder

1-teaspoon cumin powder 1-teaspoon coriander powder

1-teaspoon crushed garlic 2 big onions sliced

1 cup coconut paste or coconut milk Salt to taste

2 cloves 2 small pieces cinnamon

2 cardamoms 1 tablespoon oil or butter

Cook the chicken and all the ingredients with 6 to 8 cups of water in a large vessel on high heat till it reaches boiling point. Lower the heat and simmer for at least one hour till the soup is nice and thick. Garnish with mint leaves. Serve with bread or rice.

(Mutton or Lamb could be substituted for chicken)

ANGLO-INDIAN PEPPER WATER

Serves 6 Preparation Time 20 minutes

2 large tomatoes chopped or 2 tablespoons tomato puree

1-teaspoon pepper powder 1-teaspoon chilly powder

1-teaspoon cumin powder ½- teaspoon turmeric powder

½- teaspoon coriander powder Salt to taste

½- cup tamarind juice extracted from a small ball of tamarind or 2 teaspoons tamarind paste

Cook all the above with 3 or 4 cups of water in a vessel on high heat till it boils. Reduce the heat and cook on low heat for about 10 minutes. Season with a small onion sliced , 2 red chilies broken into bits, 3 pods garlic crushed roughly, ½ teaspoon mustard seeds, a few curry leaves and 2 teaspoons oil Note The pepper water can be prepared by using fresh red chilies cumin seeds coriander seeds, peppercorns ground in a mixer instead of the powders.