Four ways with smoked Montbeliard sausages

Smoked German sausages in a butcher's counter

With the exception of the very occasional IKEA frankfurter, we don’t eat a lot of poached sausage. Black pudding is back on trend, hogs pudding should be but most aren’t worth the skin they’re wrapped in and saveloys in the chippy remain just that – saveloys in the chippy.

They’re all victims of our lack of respect for the integrity of food and endless drive for economy and uniformity.

Saveloys started life in Switzerland as cervelas, a sausage made from pig’s brains, and as they’ve headed northwest and crossed the channel they’ve got worse. It’s not often that I say I’d rather eat brains.

But visit Alsace and the butcher’s window is full of all manner of quality snorkers and it’s the same everywhere in northern Europe. The Poles have about a thousand versions of one sausage – kielbasa.

I’ve long believed that the best way of cooking any banger, keeping it juicy inside and charred out, is to gently poach followed by a brief, fierce grill or barbecue. That way you can do most of the prep beforehand.

Anyway, about our Montbeliards. They’re a smoked pork sausage with garlic and caraway, a bit like a frankfurter, so route one would be to poach them (you can do this in the bag), then griddle, grill or barbecue and serve in a bap with mustard, ketchup and onions – or curry sauce if you like the way they do it in Berlin.

That’s great and really works on the beach, but the affinity of smoked sausages with lentils is so good it makes curry and rice look wrong.  They work together hot, in a soup or stew, or cold/lukewarm in a salad.  So route two is to warm up a tin of cooked lentils, drain in a colander and mix in a couple of tbsp of mustard vinaigrette. Poach a couple of our Montbeliard sausages , slice on the bias about ½ cm thick and quickly griddle in a hot pan. Then serve both on bruschetta with more mustard.

We’ve also given you recipes for a warm salad or casserole here.