This week I was sent some samples of some new vegetarian sausages, known as ‘Secret Sausages - Vegetables In Disguise’. The ‘secret’ referred to in the name, is that they contain no meat, and are three quarters vegetables and rice. They are approved by the Vegetarian Society, and three sausages will provide you with enough veg to count as one of your five a day!
The sausages have minimal, modern and eye-catching packaging, featuring different vegetables ‘in disguise’. Six flavours are available: Lincolnshire, Chilli and Corriander, Rosemary and Garlic, Cumberland, Honeybee, and Cheddar and Spring Onion. Other than the ‘vegetables in disguise’ tagline, it isn’t immediately obvious that the sausages are vegetarian - perhaps to draw more interest from non-veggie purchasers.
Secret Sausages have a special vegetarian skin, made from seaweed and rice, which is a bit shiny, and makes the sausages look more similar to meat sausages than many other vegetarian versions. I was sent the Cheddar and Spring Onion, and Cumberland varieties and shared them with Ben (my nearly-veggie other-half).
Frying turned the sausages a nice shade of brown. Their skins crisped a little on the outside, whilst the fillings remained soft. We liked both of the flavours, and were especially impressed by the vegetarian sausage skins, which were similar to meat sausage skins. The Cheddar and Spring Onion sausages were our favourites of the two varieties, since we felt that these had a stronger flavour - largely of sweetcorn and peppers - and were more distinct from existing veggie sausages on the market. The Cumberland sausages were also very tasty, but their sage and onion flavour reminded us of stuffing and existing veggie Lincolnshire sausages. If we hadn’t known the flavours before eating, there’s no chance we would have been able to guess them - since the overriding flavours weren’t necessarily those referred to in the names. However, each variety has a tagline on the front of the box, which mentions the main vegetable ingredients in that particular sausage flavour.
Overall - we were really impressed by these new sausages. Ben and I are in agreement that they’re among the best vegetarian sausages we’ve ever had. I prefer them to many of the more meatier (i.e. soya and Quorn) vegetarian sausages. They’re not yet available in shops, but watch this space! They are going to be exhibited at The International Food and Drink Event (IFE) at the ExCel Centre in London on the 17th to 20th March 2013. This is a gathering of the food and drink community to source new products and trade, so fingers crossed that Secret Sausages will impress some buyers from major retailers!