Goodbye Summer Sausage

BockwurstI never know what to call it, but I do love it.  Soooo very out of fashion, these pale white sausages are sold at the Amish market and deli counters everywhere.  The are usually a mix of pork and veal, need to be cooked, and take well to grilling or sautéeing.  I would not think of boiling one, but then I don’t boil hot dogs either, finding that unappetizing.

The ones at the Amish market, called bockwurst, swell up when cooked, so I usually make a couple of shallow slashes with a knife before frying it up, to prevent it bursting and spewing hot juice all over my kitchen.  (I don’t know if that can really happen, but it seems like it could.)

Loeffler’s summer sausage, in a natural casing, is a fine alternative to the plumper bockwurst. Either way, I’ll take mine on a toasted hot dog bun with whole grain mustard, maybe a little relish, and potato salad on the side.  Goodbye summer….

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5 thoughts on “Goodbye Summer Sausage

  1. O, Faith, thanks so very much for this redolent re-creation of a recent meal.

    I especially appreciate having been given other names for my favorite sausages in the entire world.

    The best I ever had were fresh-made at the Lausanne Expo in 1964, grilled over a wood fire on the shores of Lake Geneva, served in a freshly baked bun, with beer that you bought with francs from something like a Coke Machine, and devoured in the face of lake breezes.

    I bought your sausages for my Chicago sister’s visit, at the Polish meat market at Trenton Farmers’ Market, last week. They are made of pure delicate tender white veal, –not a smidgen of darkening/toughening pork. In Switzerland, in St. Gallen, from whence came my in-laws and my 100% Swiss husband, they are matters of pride second only to lace – St. Gallen Bratwurst.

    Theirs usually have flecks of parsley, which add nothing perceptible taste-wise, but are visually interesting.

    Werner’s mother (more treasured than my own…) would brush their bratwurst with milk before sauteeing until brown. She pricked them with tiny invisible fork tines – the forks you use to hold meat when carving.

    More amazingly, Moms would send Pops to a Swiss butcher in Weehauken (sp?) at Thanksgiving, to get uncooked bratwurst. She’d squeeze contents out of casings into generous thick mixing bowl, add eggs and then! lift turkey skin and put this between skin and breast.

    The juices seeped down through the turkey meat all during roasting. A 20-lb. turkey looked like 30. Never have I seen a more beautiful color — bronze is pale beside those memories. And the flavor, the juiciness…! Those turkeys were bigger than my newborn November babies…

    I could never figure out how to get the skin off a turkey without ripping, so we “never tried that at home,” as the saying goes. But there were no Thanksgivings anywhere like those of the American Swiss.

    My sister loved those sausages and we didn’t know how she could get them in Chicago. I’ll copy your blog to her now.

    Thanks for the memories! as ever Carolyn (Foote Edelmann, your fellow blogger on NJ WILD)

  2. Ah, I love loeffler’s Summer Sausage! In Upstate New York, they are called Coney’s( as in Coney Island they tell me) or Snappy Grillers. And there as well, they are only made by one company. Coneys are a little smaller and have a slightly different taste, but still veal, pork, and milk. Like the Summer Sausage better but Coneys are a good substitute. Loefflers sell them all year at the company store and they are great in the broiler, turning frequently. I would be interested in what they are called in other parts of the country!

  3. It’s really easy to find in Mercer county where their factory is. They even have a factory store…I picked up 5 lbs for $22. Put them in the freezer after having for lunch twice days in a row!

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