Blood sausage is a product made from the blood of an animal that has been harvested. The blood is usually mixed with some kind of grain or cereal like oats, barley, or rye flour.
The mixture is poured in the stomach lining of the animal or the intestines and sealed up. It is then cooked or dried by boiling or roasting until the contents become solid. After that, it is cooled and used in a multitude of dishes.
It can be eaten hot or cold by itself or in a dish of some sort. Blood sausage has been around for centuries and exists as to not waste any part of the animal when it is butchered. There are many different recipes for blood sausage and it really depends on the region or nation it is created within.
Even though blood sausage may seem like an off-putting thing to eat, it is quite delicious. I can see how it may be an acquired taste to some, but waste not, want not. Blood sausage also can be in other forms aside from the sausage link form.
This is usually called black pudding but is still the same product just a different shape. On another note, blood sausage is incredibly good for you with plenty of health benefits.
Of course, it is very high in protein and calories which will sustain you through the hard winters in remote places. But it is also very rich and high in minerals and vitamins such as iron and vitamin D.
Blood sausage is really not all that different from other types of sausages. So, when you decide to make the entrée, just treat it like you would any other type of sausage.
It works really well in soups and stews, casseroles, sausage and peppers, and other mixed rice dishes. However, the most common way to consume the blood sausage is by eating it in its natural form.
It can be cooked just about any way you prefer but most people like to smoke, grill or boil the sausages. Choosing a side dish to go with the blood sausage is also fairly simple.
You could go with just about anything you like, but there are a few that will work better than others. A nice heaping pile of mashed potatoes or braised cabbage is always going to be a favorite. Or you can pair them with scallops or a traditional English breakfast plate with beans, toast and tomatoes.
There really is not a wrong way to go when pairing blood sausage or black pudding with a side dish. The flavor of blood sausage is going to be much stronger than most other types of sausage though.
So, you may want to try pairing it with subtly flavored side dishes. If you still are not sure what to pair with your blood sausage, we came with some really great options. Keep reading to find out what will work best for you on the dinner table next time.
- 9 Side Dishes To Serve With Blood Sausage
- Wines To Pair With Blood Sausage
- Desserts To Serve With Blood Sausage
- Is It Safe To Eat Blood Sausage?
- Final Considerations
9 Side Dishes To Serve With Blood Sausage
As we mentioned before, mashed potatoes are going to be the best option to choose from. Sausage and mashed potatoes just make sense and work nicely together. You want to make sure to not overseason the mashed potatoes or add a bunch of other ingredients to them.
Keep the side dish simple and stay away from adding heavy flavors and cheese. I like to just stick to the basics with some salt, pepper, garlic powder, milk, and butter. You can’t go wrong with this side dish.
Even if you don’t want mashed potatoes, you can go with a different form or method of cooking the potato. Fried potatoes, potato hash, roasted potatoes, and others are also great options to go with too. It just all depends on your preference.
This is another great side dish to try out with your blood sausage. It really is one of the classics and can be found alongside sausages in many different restaurants around the world.
They really are a match made in heaven. There are several types of cabbage to go with but the most common is going to be green cabbage.
It does take longer to cook and needs to be cooked on low heat slowly in order to break down the fibers of the vegetable. Sometimes it is cooked with some garlic or onions beforehand as well.
When it comes to braising, water or vegetable stock will do just fine but many people like to use beer instead.
You want to make sure to use a lighter-colored beer as to not change the color of the side dish. Also, if you want to use red cabbage, it can be quite delicious too. Usually, it is braised with some red wine, raspberries, and a touch of sugar.
The braised red cabbage comes out slightly tart and sweet which the blood sausage will benefit from greatly.
3.Sauteed Onions And Sauerkraut
Even though sauerkraut is still a braised kind of cabbage it is very different in terms of flavor. Also, sauerkraut is usually served cold rather than hot, but it can go either way.
Sauerkraut is not just to be used as a topping for a hot dog or sausage, because it can be a great side dish too. Add some golden raisins, stone ground mustard and onions to the cabbage as it braises. It will bring some nice flavors to the sauerkraut that will work wonderfully with blood sausage.
4.Roasted Root Vegetable Medley
If you are not a fan of potatoes then you should try going with some of the other great root vegetables out there. There are quite a few to choose from and are very easy to cook. Most of them are all pretty dense so they may take a bit longer to cook than potatoes.
Some of the great choices to choose from are rutabagas, parsnips, carrots, and turnips. You can also add some onions and garlic cloves to the mix if you want some added flavor. All you need to do is cut them up, cover with some oil, salt, and pepper and roast them on a sheet pan.
Halfway through the cook, you may want to flip the veggies or mix them up a bit so they can get browned on all sides. It is a very cheap and easy side dish to make with blood sausage that everyone will love.
If you have never had an English breakfast then you should try one sometime. It is a pretty odd mix of dishes put together on the same plate.
This is not a side dish but kind of is when compiled together. The plate usually has a sausage of sort like blood sausage or black pudding. Then there are plenty of other sides on the plate.
Usually, it consists of a fried egg, toast, fried mushrooms, baked beans, bacon strips, and grilled tomatoes. These dishes placed together do not seem like they would be good but oddly enough they work really well together. This is a classic dish enjoyed all over the world, but mainly in England.
Just like the English breakfast, scotch eggs are another great way to utilize your blood sausage. In this case, you will need to have some black pudding that is only slightly cooked or even raw in some cases.
A scotch egg is an egg that has been soft boiled then has the blood sausage formed around the entire egg. It is then breaded with some breadcrumbs and either baked or fried.
When you cut into the scotch egg, the yolk should be runny and the sausage fully cooked. It is a full meal in itself when done this way utilizing blood sausage.
Scallops don’t always need to be the main event in an entrée. In fact, it is quite usual to have scallops on the side dishes or add-ons in most nice restaurants. When it comes to blood sausages, scallops work really well together.
The natural saltiness of the sea scallops elevates the rich deep flavor of the blood sausage. Usually, blood sausage will benefit from the addition of salt which is where the scallops come in.
One of the great side dishes that go with just about everything is bread. The same goes for blood sausages. It can be any kind of bread you prefer but a softer bread or roll will work the best.
You can also go with a hoagie or a bun to place the blood sausage on as well. We recommended putting some grilled peppers and onions on top of the sausage just to kick it up a notch.
This is another great dish that includes blood sausage. The sausage is usually grilled or cooked and then sliced up and placed in the dish once it is done.
Shakshuka is a dish that is usually enjoyed for breakfast and is very popular in the middle east and Mediterranean regions. It consists of a thick and rich tomato sauce with peppers, onions and garlic.
Sometimes you will find a few poached eggs on top of the dish as well. It is meant to be eaten naan bread and is quite a delicacy. It is very easy to make and very affordable as well.
Wines To Pair With Blood Sausage
When choosing a wine to pair with blood sausage you need to think about contrasting flavors. Since blood sausage is very rich, fatty, and high in protein it needs a wine to cut through that.
French Cabernet Sauvignon
This bright and fruity wine will work nicely with the metallic and sometimes irony-tasting blood sausage. The wine has plenty of tannins giving it a slightly dry and acidic flavor.
This medium-bodied wine has strong dark fruit flavors which work well with blood sausage. The wine does have a dry finish which also comes off slightly acidic.
Desserts To Serve With Blood Sausage
Since blood sausage is a very rich dish, you will probably want to stick to the same flavor profile. It is a very indulgent dish so go with a dessert that has the same qualities. There are plenty of routes to take, but the obvious choice is to go with chocolate.
Chocolate Lava Cake
A deep and rich chocolate dessert will be a great way to end the meal. This rich and decadent dessert has a silky-smooth liquid chocolate center that pours out when cut into. The dessert will complement the blood sausage and round out the meal as a whole.
Flourless Chocolate Cake
This is an incredibly rich dessert that is also completely gluten-free! The dessert is mainly made of cocoa powder so there will be a dry finishing note that will complement the blood sausage.
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Is It Safe To Eat Blood Sausage?
This all depends on how the animal was raised and how the blood sausage was prepared. You will want to make sure the animal lives with no diseases, is naturally organic feed and is free-range.
The healthier the animal the lower the risk. Also, the blood sausage needs to be made at the time of the butchering and pretty much right away. Once it is made it will need to be cooked right away as well.
This will help to eliminate any food born illnesses or cross-contamination during the process. If all these rules are followed strictly, then it will be perfectly fine to eat blood sausage.
If you have never had blood sausage then I recommended you go out and try it at least once. I know it sounds like strange food but you may like it more than you would have expected to.
It really is a great ingredient and the main dish to try out. Plus, it will work really well with just about any kind of side dish you decide to go with. Just keep it simple and think about contrasting the flavors when making the side dish.
Kevin has spent 20 years as an Executive Chef, focused heavily on recipe construction and menu development. Today his focus is on writing, consulting to restaurants, and teaching culinary arts. In his spare time, Kevin loves to cook with his lovely wife and kids.