Welcome to another Wicked WayBack Wednesday.
For years, and years, and even more years, when I saw the words
which are fairly common words in 2nd half 17th century English cookbooks, I thought
You know, like Oscar Mayer. Click Oscar Mayer, it’s the link to the song
And then one day I realized it was
Baloney, like I was wrong.
Wrong way, really and truly wrong.
Wrong country wrong.
Darn those 17th century English dialects.
Not Bolonia but Polonia. Not Italian sausage – Polish sausage.
Oscar Mayer kielbasa polska
A smoked Polish sausage…..like kielbasa
First, Bolonia Sausages.
The best way and time of the year is to make them in September.
Take four stone of pork, of the legs the leanest, and take away all
the skins, sinews, and fat from it; mince it fine and stamp it: then
add to it three ounces of whole pepper, two ounces of pepper more
grosly cracked or beaten, whole cloves an ounce, nutmegs an ounce
finely beaten, salt, spanish, or peter-salt, an ounce of
coriander-seed finely beaten, or carraway-seed, cinamon an ounce
fine beaten, lard cut an inch long, as big as your little finger,
and clean without rust; mingle all the foresaid together; and fill
beef guts as full as you can possibly, and as the wind gathers in
the gut, prick them with a pin, and shake them well down with your
hands; for if they be not well filled, they will be rusty.
These aforesaid Bolonia Sausages are most excellent of pork only:
but some use buttock beef, with pork, half one and as much of the
other. Beef and pork are very good.
Some do use pork of a weeks powder for this use beforesaid, and no
more salt at all.
Some put a little sack in the beating of these sausages, and put in
place of coriander-seed, carraway-seed.
This is the most excellent way to make Bolonia Sausages, being
carefully filled, and tied fast with a packthred, and smoaked or
smothered three or four days, that will turn them red; then hang
them in some cool cellar or higher room to take the air.
Robert May The Accomplist Cook
Robert May and the frontispiece of The Acomplist Cook
If you’ve made sausages before, you can see that this is actually a pretty good sausage recipe. A stone is 14 pounds so 4 stone is a LOT of meat. 56 pounds of meat. 17th century sausage making is not for those with dainty appetites. 20-30% fat. Water and spices. Good advice to get rid of the air pockets. This is not a starter recipe. Smoking is easy if you have a smoker or know someone who has a smoker.
Either way, sausages in September seem completely more Autumn then sausages in August. The cold nights are only the coming attractions for the season ahead. It’s still not Fall, so all those Pumpkin Spiced Lattes and doughnuts – not quite yet, thank you very much.
All in due time.