Monday, February 18, 2008

Is it raw or are we just paranoid?

In a nice bit of groupthink at a market in Bellinzona this weekend, Frau B., Swiss Mr., and I decided to purchase some goat sausage. Actually, we decided to purchase sausage which turned out to be goat, so the goat really didn't play into the decision at all. Our camera is still kaput so you'll have to imagine the long strings of sausages hanging in the stand which worked their old world charm on us.

The first bite revealed that this grandpa of a sausage was not at all what it seemed. Its contents were a lively pink. Its consistency was softish. It smelled young. And it tasted a little fresh. We found this apparent rawness confusing. How could this rustic old meat be unfinished? We stood alone in a medieval courtyard contemplating this importunate question and many others such as: If it was raw, how would one cook it? What would that bit in my stomach do later in the day? Could the color possibly be just from the curing?

These questions went unanswered and the sausages went forgotten in my bag for the rest of the day as we went off to explore castles and get lost on a long and winding road flanked by goats and the meanest dogs in existence. But now that they are at the forefront of my refrigerator and my mind, I am again seeking answers about these slender sausages. I am hoping a knowledgeable sausage fairy will visit my blog to tell me how I can eat the rest of these. Or that there is some Muenchener or Midwesterner out there with sausage savvy who has some advice. To assist, here is a computer-shot of said sausages:

Exhibit A: A rare find?

10 comments:

Swiss Ms. said...

A knowledgeable source has indicated that, in all likelihood, this sausage was just air-dried/cured. So the answer seems to be "just paranoid."

Julie & Captain said...

Wow. Still. I have problems with sausage in general. Perhaps in another country, it might be a little more acceptable... but still. Sausage scares me. I'm glad you're ok.

joyce said...

danger!

jenicrob said...

The goat factor would also make me a little leery of trusting the cookedness. I mean, rare beef is one thing; rare goat is another. Although, I suppose most sausages are pork, which you definitely don't want rare either. Anyways, I'm sure the goat sausages have long since been eaten or disposed of by now. Next time, you could try boiling just as an experiment to see what happens.

Swiss Ms. said...

Well, I ate one of them but really couldn't make it through the other. I was okay with the texture, but there was a funny smokey flavor I couldn't stomach. But I felt absolutely fine, so I'm pretty sure they were safe.

Anonymous said...

May be a little late, but still: This looks like a sausage that belongs to the salami family, and therefore is raw. Not to worry though: The meat has been thoroughly "cooked" by the special strains of bacteria that are allowed to grow in this type of sausage, which by their sheer abundance prevent infestation by bacteria that would be bad for your health.

I always say that salami-type sausages are the meat equivalent of blue cheese.

Swiss Ms. said...

I'm trying to figure out if you're a vegetarian or not....

Anonymous said...

Not at all. I enjoy my salami as much as I enjoy my blue cheese, my beer and wine (fermented foods, too) - i.e. a lot

From a food hygiene perspective, I highly recommend not to cut other meat products with a knife that has been used to cut salami without washing it first though, unless you plan to eat them immediately afterwards.

Swiss Ms. said...

Thank you. I shall never cut or eat salami in the same way again.

Anonymous said...

The salami taste beats probiotic joghurt any day ;-)