Due to the popularity of merguez in France, I always thought it was French food. I kind reader of MCW corrected me that this spicy fresh sausage is of North African cuisine, specifically Morocco. It can be made using mutton or beef; and I go with lamb because of the flavor and higher fat content.
It is the harissa spice paste that gives it its characteristic red color; but watch out some harissa pasts are very spicy so you would need to adjust accordingly. I did not want to deal with sausage casings, say with all that cleaning then stuffing, so made patties from the mix.
Ingredients: (serves 4)
500g minced lamb
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp fennel seed powder
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 heaped Tbsp harissa paste
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup chopped leafy fresh herbs
1 teaspoon vinegar
Make the merguez: Combine lamb, spices, including paprika, harissa, garlic and 1 teaspoon salt and mix to combine. Form into 12 mounds. This can be mixed and refrigerated for up to 3 days in advance.
Make the herbed yogurt: Mix the yogurt, finely chopped herbs and vinegar in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt and extra vinegar, if desired. Set aside until needed.
Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Coat with olive oil and once it is very hot, add a few sausage mounds. Once they hit the frying pan, flatten them with the back of your spatula. Cook until brown and crispy underneath, then flip and cook for another minute or two. Drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining meat.
Serve patties warm with herbed yogurt and scattered with extra herbs and shredded cabbage or turnip pickle, if desired, plus wedges of lemon to squeeze over.
صحة و عافية