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Bratwurst

Bratwurst is a German delicacy that has been surrounded by some debate, mostly over the translation of its name, and its origins. It has often been thought that this German Sausage was named after the German word Braten, ‘to fry’, but it’s more likely it was named after the word Brat, which refers to a meat mixture that makes up the sausage.

Although it’s thought that the origins of Bratwurst may not lay in Germany, the country certainly developed the dish, and adopted it as one of its own. Thuringen and Franken are two places most commonly linked with the history of Bratwurst. Thuringen has recorded evidence of Bratwurst dating back to 1404, while Frankens records go further back to 1313. While the arguments have raged about both these issues, there can be no debating the fact that Nuremburg, in the Franken region, is internationally renowned as a Bratwurst producer.

Facts aside, what about the product that has become so well-known throughout the world? Bratwurst sausages are pan fried or grilled, and can sometimes be cooked in a broth of beer. The sausage is a very popular street food in Germany, and locals and tourists alike have adopted it as one of their favourite ‘fast food’ items. Street vendors sell Bratwurst from small stalls, and it’s also something you can eat or buy to take home from Christmas Markets.

Although shoppers can buy packets of the sausages to take home and eat as a snack, there are various ways to serve them if you’re eating out. On the streets, vendors will serve Bratwurst in a white roll with German Mustard, while in pubs you can order dishes of Bratwurst with Sauerkraut, potato salad, and crusty bread.

Just like many traditional foods, along with different ways of serving Bratwurst, there are different varieties of the sausage itself, over 50 can be found in various regions or localities in Germany.  They vary in size, seasoning, and texture, but are all equally tasty. Next time you’re hungry while in Germany, you could be snacking on Corburger Bratwurst, made up from veal, beef, and seasonings of salt, pepper, nutmeg, and lemon zest, or the heavily seasoned pork based Nordhessische Bratwurst. Maybe you’ll also try the Wurzburger Bratwurst, made with white wine from Franken, or the Rote Wurst, made from ground pork and bacon.

There are of course other versions of Bratwurst available, but to sample the best versions of Bratwurst, you’ll really need to book a trip to one of the Christmas markets, or take in a city break. Only then will your appetite be truly satisfied.

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