Highly seasoned minced meat, usually pork or beef, traditionally stuffed in casings of prepared animal intestine. Sausage has been known since ancient times. Some varieties came to be known by their city of origin: the frankfurter from Frankfurt am Main, bologna from Bologna, the wiener from Vienna (Wien). Sausage meat may be eaten fresh, smoked, dried, or pickled. It may be mixed with other meats and additives such as cereals, vegetable starch, soy flour, preservatives, artificial colourings, salt, and various herbs and spices. Casings may be intestine, paraffin-treated fabric bags, or synthetic sleeves of plastic or reconstituted collagen. All but dry (cured) sausages require refrigerated storage. Cooked and dry sausages are ready to eat; fresh (and frozen) sausages must be cooked.

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
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