Why does London need its own sausage?
Unlike Frankfurt or Cumberland, London has never had a proper sausage of its own. And that's just not right.
That's why we've come up with a design competition exciting enough to get Heatherwick and Lumley's mouths watering: a New Sausage for London.
Where did we go wrong?
Past attempts to bring the sausage to London include the Roman botulus from which unfortunately the food toxin is named. (Julius Caesar may not have thought to bring them in a cool box in 55BC.)
Then, Victorian reporter John Hollingshead mentions a repulsive banger made of waste meat known on the street as the 'Clerkenwell Bloodworm.' (This is surely the kind of sausage identified as a Hieronymus Bosch trademark in his demonic paintings.)
And then there’s the nearly-London Epping Sausage with its characteristic cache of sage. Sounds lovely, but Epping, alas, just isn't London.
Edward VII, famed for his appetite, might have done for the sausage in London what Prince Albert did for plate glass with the Crystal Palace of 1851. Unfortunately, Edward died. The final nail was hammered in when German zeppelins made sausage-shaped foods very much unpatriotic (Frankfurt on the other hand has its own zeppelin-themed sausagemeat.)
What do we need from a new sausage?
A focus group was needed. We got in the way of a stream of busy commuters one morning to ask them. This sausage needs to be diverse and inclusive, they said. It needs to be Londony. It should be bland and noisy. It must contain both 100% meat and no meat at all. It must be green. This then is the challenge. We stand ready to test them in our Londonist test kitchen.
Sausage recipes we came up with
Ox blood. Our own tube fanatic Geoff Marshall suggested this as a Londony ingredient after the shade of Leslie Green’s maroon tiled underground stations.
Cocktail. The designer gin boom suggests a sausage made exclusively from gin, with cake crumbs instead of rusk, and possibly garlanded with hibiscus flowers or skewered with an umbrella.
Chocolate. While we're talking sweet sausage... everything has to have a chocolate version. For years London's Portuguese bakeries have served chocolate salami with broken biscuits for the white bits. Go one better and incorporate popping candy to make a British chocolate banger.
Link free. In the same way that our Underground trains no longer limit us from moving from one carriage to another, so the new meat tube should come in longer lengths without twists in between segments. Think of the South African boerewors which is coiled like a mamba. Even better — think a sausage that never ends.
Turkey. The City of London coat of arms bears the cross of St George whose actual haunts were in Turkey. Was he partial to a sausage — his dragon just a sausage allegorical? The monster was perhaps a string of sausages mistaken for reptilian coils, original of the sinister twizzler.
Multi-Faith. It should not contain anything that might offend anyone. It would be like the cocktail sausage without the gin. Of course the cake crumbs would be sugar free for tax avoidance purposes.
The Sausage skyscraper. We've got a Gherkin, and a Cheesegrater. Know what goes with lofty pickles and cheese... that's right, a massive glass and steel sausage.
Clerkenwell Bloodworms. Did they ever really disappear? Perhaps they just need a makeover. Add super-food spirulina to make them green instead of pink. Done.
Got a better sausage idea? Designers, do your wurst, and tell us in the comments below.