And so the month of sausages is upon us again! From this week the entrants in the 2018 Devro Great NZ Sausage Competition will start sending us in their creations ahead of the upcoming judging days.
With almost 500 entries to work through you can imagine this is no simple task. This started a simple conversation around the lunchroom table with a few new staff who have yet to experience the wonder of sausage month and with it came the discussion that last years surprising winner was Akaroa Butchery’s Boudin Noir Black Pudding. Surprising in the sense that since the commencement of this competition, it seems that 2017 was the first year for the humble blood sausage to take out top honours and could it be, the reason for this is that this unique sausage appeals to people with a certain acquired taste? I was surprised to hear that both our new staff members had an absolute love for black pudding and would regularly add it to the fry up on a lazy Sunday morning. From a wee bit of research (courtesy of Mr Google) I found out that black pudding is as old as the civilised world itself.
For as long as we have been farming animals, we have been producing some form of black pudding, originally made for peasants and yet it still exists in modern day - this to me is a true example of how something has stood the test of time, in fact Id go so far as to say its making a comeback. Many chefs are now adding it to their menus again and its not just a breakfast dish – many chefs are using it because they realise it brings richness to a dish and it’s now found in starters and main courses. One source in the UK even went as far as claiming we should be adding it to the superfoods list as the product is often high in iron and protein and low in carbohydrates. And perhaps the true testament that black pudding is still very much on the menu is that British princes William and Harry asked for plenty of black pudding as a majestic hangover cure for the invited guests after Williams wedding and that is nearly 500 years after Henry V111 ensured that there was always masses of black pudding on hand for his lavish banquets.
So, like it or loath it, with a history like this, the blood sausage is not about to disappear from our shelves any time soon and is just another example of the resourcefulness of our butchers in being able to use many more parts of the beast and the continuing innovation that keeps retailers wanting to stock black pudding for those with discerning taste buds.