Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Homemade: Wickham Manor Farm sausages

I was wandering through Balham in South London when I saw a small farmer's market selling organic produce. One of the stalls was for Wickham Manor Farm and was selling - you guessed it - sausages.

It was too good an opportunity to miss so I bagged one pack of pork sausages and one pack of cumberland. The friendly stallholder gave strict instructions not to rush the cooking of these sausages (allow 20 mins) and when I examined the label back home, I discovered that the farm is a supporter of the 'slow food movement' - a campaign to get people away from our current microwave-burger-bar-scoff-it-down culture and instead actually take some time over food - and thereby appreciate it more.

In other words, these sausages are made with the intention of being savoured. First up, the plain pork sausages:

The first thing you notice is how lean the sausages are. Very little fat comes out when you grill them. Solidly packed in a thin casing, meaty and delicately seasoned, these went great with mustard and tomatoes (grilled along with the sausages) in a fresh baguette. I did like the texture and flavour of these very much.

The following weekend I tried the cumberland variety:

Again, a very good sausage, although I thought it could have done with a bit more seasoning. The texture was good but I felt it lacked a little fat this time. This could have been purely down to me grilling the sausage for too long, but either way I think a bit more fat would have enhanced the flavour overall. The relative leanness of the sausage might be why I missed that peppery, herby taste I associate with a cumberland. You can't deny the quality of the meat, though, and I'd be happy to get a sausage like this in a sandwich bought in town.

Both sausages were really good but the plain pork was especially good, in my opinion. If you'd like to order or buy Wickham Manor Farm sausages, their contact details are:

Wickham Manor Farm
Panel Lane
East Sussex
TN36 4AG

tel: 01797 225 575 (

Or you might be able to catch them at the farmer's market in Balham High Street at the weekend. Enjoy!

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