Sunday, 15 May 2011
Jésus from Lyon
When friends come to dinner, they often ask what can they bring. Well, when Fran and Sidney asked what they could bring they happened to be in Lyon, so I said a dry-cured sausage. I was expecting a small sausage that you slice thinly and serve with pre-dinner drinks. Instead I received this magnificent specimen from the specialty charcuterie Bonnard.
I must point out the sausage was whole when it arrived. I immediately sliced it and we savoured it with gin in a martini and mixed with tonic. Not very French, but a great combination.
This sausage is known as a Jésus de Lyon. The size of a small melon, but pear-shaped, its casing is held in place by a network of string. According to the The Oxford Companion to Food the name comes from the sausage's resemblance to a baby in swaddling clothes! I think who ever named it must have spent too long drinking in a bouchon, the name for an informal, often family run, restaurant in Lyon.
Inside you can see it is a typical pork based sausage with a good amount of fat and spiced with black peppercorns. It is slowly cured and is flavourful and moist. Needless to say it has been disappearing quickly. With drinks and when you just need a little something to snack on. Thank you Fran and Sidney, you can come to dinner anytime you want.