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Differences in sausage types

SherryT

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I've been reading through a LOT of recipes on Len Poli's site and meatsandsausages.com and there seems to be little difference between a lot of fresh sausages, especially German and English-type sausages. For example, most of BOTH of those types contain some combination of mace, nutmeg, ginger, or sage (esp in English types) with the main differences being the amount of spice (and even that varies little) or the inclusion of a filler such as rusk/breadcrumbs in a lot of English sausages.

I get it that "regionality" comes into play (Thuringer VS Nurnberger brats, etc) or other factors such as how the sausage is stuffed (links or coils), but, in the end, to me they should all BASICALLY taste the same.

So, in the end, what makes a brat, for example, really "stand out" and be superior to another?
 

SmokinAl

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There are tons of brat recipes on here, but I would PM SFLsmkr1 SFLsmkr1 , he is the sausage king. I think we all have our own brat recipes, but Rick SFLsmkr1 SFLsmkr1 will get you going in the right direction!
Al
 

SFLsmkr1

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My wifes sister lives in Magdeburg Germany. I will have her ask when they talk next time.
 

chef jimmyj

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The difference depends on your Sense of Smell and Taste. If you can sense subtle variation in spice. All will taste different. I'm a Super Taster, not Parts per Million like some, but I can distinguish Herbs and Spices by Smell and Taste. So tasting variation is easier for me than some. I'm not a fan of Mace. Too much and I won't be enjoying that sausage. Same with Dry Basil. I can taste the tiniest amount in a Tomato Sauce or other recipe...JJ
 

tallbm

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I've been reading through a LOT of recipes on Len Poli's site and meatsandsausages.com and there seems to be little difference between a lot of fresh sausages, especially German and English-type sausages. For example, most of BOTH of those types contain some combination of mace, nutmeg, ginger, or sage (esp in English types) with the main differences being the amount of spice (and even that varies little) or the inclusion of a filler such as rusk/breadcrumbs in a lot of English sausages.

I get it that "regionality" comes into play (Thuringer VS Nurnberger brats, etc) or other factors such as how the sausage is stuffed (links or coils), but, in the end, to me they should all BASICALLY taste the same.

So, in the end, what makes a brat, for example, really "stand out" and be superior to another?
I've never eaten brats in/from Germany.
However, I have eaten brats all over the USA including Wisconsin and Minnesota. I've eaten them in German restaurants all over the US and in a few overseas countries.

The difference is.... they've ALL been completely underwhelming and had me searching for the reason people liked brats or thought any of the ones I ever tasted were anything special.

THEN, I got into making my own sausage and bought a LEM 5 pound sausage stuffing kit and it came with a 5 pound fresh Brat seasoning as part of the sample pack of sausage seasonings and OMG. Hands down the most amazing brats I'd ever eaten!!!!
I finally felt like THIS is what all the "so called" brats I ever ate were trying to be. I also assume this is much more like the original flavor of brats that I may encounter in Germany but I don't know until I get there some day and try hahaha.

I have not figured out what makes one brat stand out and be superior over another but that's mostly because I hit the most amazing brat flavor in a freaking off the shelf mix so never had to attempt to figure it out hahaha.

Since you are getting into sausage making I would like to issue you a friendly challenge :)
-Make like a 3 pound batch of brats of a recipe you have found on the internet and I bet money you are like "why would anyone put their name on this bland crappy brat recipe".

-ALSO, make a 3 pound batch of LEM's Backwoods Fresh Brats.
Then tell me which brats you like best.
LEM's seasoning measurements are by volume which don't always scale well so through the years I've figured out the per pound measurements of seasoning in grams that scales, so I would highly recommend you go with my notes here below when making LEM's fresh brats in this challenge:

LEM's Fresh Brat27.3g seasoning per poundSausage
LEM's Cured Franks14g seasoning per poundSausage

I also added my notes for LEM's Cured Franks which also make the best franks I've ever eaten anywhere. I've tried at least 3 or 4 of other franks/hotdogs recipes and they don't come close to LEM's which are much like real franks I've eaten at German restaurants but these are still better. They hit a homerun with those two seasonings :)

Let me know how this sounds haha :)
 
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chef jimmyj

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Interesting. I'm going to have to try LEM Brats. I have always been a fan of Johnsonville Brats. But, I had them a month ago and last week and Something Changed! Could be me or for whatever reason, they changed their season mix supplier, but the flavor went from a Complex Chord, to a Single Note. And yes it's MACE that has become the dominant flavor...JJ😣
 

SherryT

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I've never eaten brats in/from Germany.
However, I have eaten brats all over the USA including Wisconsin and Minnesota. I've eaten them in German restaurants all over the US and in a few overseas countries.

The difference is.... they've ALL been completely underwhelming and had me searching for the reason people liked brats or thought any of the ones I ever tasted were anything special.

THEN, I got into making my own sausage and bought a LEM 5 pound sausage stuffing kit and it came with a 5 pound fresh Brat seasoning as part of the sample pack of sausage seasonings and OMG. Hands down the most amazing brats I'd ever eaten!!!!
I finally felt like THIS is what all the "so called" brats I ever ate were trying to be. I also assume this is much more like the original flavor of brats that I may encounter in Germany but I don't know until I get there some day and try hahaha.

I have not figured out what makes one brat stand out and be superior over another but that's mostly because I hit the most amazing brat flavor in a freaking off the shelf mix so never had to attempt to figure it out hahaha.

Since you are getting into sausage making I would like to issue you a friendly challenge :)
-Make like a 3 pound batch of brats of a recipe you have found on the internet and I bet money you are like "why would anyone put their name on this bland crappy brat recipe".

-ALSO, make a 3 pound batch of LEM's Backwoods Fresh Brats.
Then tell me which brats you like best.
LEM's seasoning measurements are by volume which don't always scale well so through the years I've figured out the per pound measurements of seasoning in grams that scales, so I would highly recommend you go with my notes here below when making LEM's fresh brats in this challenge:

LEM's Fresh Brat27.3g seasoning per poundSausage
LEM's Cured Franks14g seasoning per poundSausage

I also added my notes for LEM's Cured Franks which also make the best franks I've ever eaten anywhere. I've tried at least 3 or 4 of other franks/hotdogs recipes and they don't come close to LEM's which are much like real franks I've eaten at German restaurants but these are still better. They hit a homerun with those two seasonings :)

Let me know how this sounds haha :)
Gonna give the LEM seasonings a try...THANKS!
 

zwiller

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Bratwurst is sausage. Brats are like music: art. No right or wrong. Mild or bold.

I agree that formulations for sausage can be very similar. Same goes for beer. There are probably other examples. TO ME, what makes one sausage better than the others is how balanced the ingredients interplay with one another. I swear I typed this long before chef jimmyj chef jimmyj posted but the single note vs complex chord is the PERFECT metaphor! Done well and it becomes SOMETHING. It's hard to tell what meats are used or if spices are even used at all. Done wrong and it becomes evident what you are tasting is ground meat mixed with spices.

I really like AC Leggs brat mix. Very traditional german tasting and not WI/American style at all.
 

tallbm

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Interesting. I'm going to have to try LEM Brats. I have always been a fan of Johnsonville Brats. But, I had them a month ago and last week and Something Changed! Could be me or for whatever reason, they changed their season mix supplier, but the flavor went from a Complex Chord, to a Single Note. And yes it's MACE that has become the dominant flavor...JJ😣
I think Johnsonville may change them periodically. I have always found them bland except for 1 time where they had some good flavor and then sometime after I bought some and bland gain :(

Let me know what you think when you try the LEM Brats. I love the flavor, no blandness at all. The only issue I ever had was being too salty or not flavorful enough when figuring out how to scale the seasoning to larger volumes. I think I'm pretty close with my notes. The key is to mix it really well with my measurements and it should be good to go. Some may want more seasoning or less but it wont be by much either way :)

Gonna give the LEM seasonings a try...THANKS!
Awesome! Let me know where you land with them and if you feel it needs to be more or less seasoning per pound. I'm always interested in figuring out a range for various people's taste buds :)
 

SherryT

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I think Johnsonville may change them periodically. I have always found them bland except for 1 time where they had some good flavor and then sometime after I bought some and bland gain :(

Let me know what you think when you try the LEM Brats. I love the flavor, no blandness at all. The only issue I ever had was being too salty or not flavorful enough when figuring out how to scale the seasoning to larger volumes. I think I'm pretty close with my notes. The key is to mix it really well with my measurements and it should be good to go. Some may want more seasoning or less but it wont be by much either way :)



Awesome! Let me know where you land with them and if you feel it needs to be more or less seasoning per pound. I'm always interested in figuring out a range for various people's taste buds :)
I will!
 

bill ace 350

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It will be very hard to describe the flavor of a brat.

When i lived in Germany, not only were there regional differences, but localized differences as well.

Some , pork, some veal, some a mixture, some with egg some without, some with milk, some without, some with breadcrumbs, some without.... not to mention differences in spices.

I don't think that getting one recipe from Germany will be your answer.

Experiment! You'll come up with something you like!
 

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