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May 31, 2009

The superiority of sausage over bacon


First of all, I would love to have been a fly on the wall to see John McIntyre attending the Baltimore Sun tweet-up. I would have thought the name alone would prevent him from going. But he is nothing if not a good sport.

In his blog entry about the event and other such things was a nugget of wisdom I thought I should bring to your attention. On "the superiority of bacon over sausage: with bacon, you know what you’re eating." ...

The weird thing is that even though he's totally correct, I still like (Tennessee) sausage better than bacon. And don't be fooled by the sausage sold in northern supermarkets and called Tennessee Pride or some such. Although Tennessee Pride tastes great in Tennessee.

Of course, maybe it tastes better in Tennessee because I'm on vacation.

(Photo courtesy of Tennessee Pride Web site)
Posted by Elizabeth Large at 9:36 AM | | Comments (57)


Good sausage: like buttah. On the other hand, no one quite knows what's in Scrapple, do they? Apparently they use whatever ain't bone, bacon, sausage, or ham.

Cleatus, I've said it before: Scrapple. Gack!

EL, as a general rule, pork tastes better in the south.

You know what doesn't taste better in the south? Asian food, including Asian food with pork.

Boy do I wish we could go back to saying oriental food. Asian food is way too inclusive for the point I'm trying to make, and Chinese food is way to exclusive.

A butcher was walking across a bridge on a windy day when a sudden gust knocks him into the river. A man passing by dives into the river and rescues him. The butcher says "You have saved my life; you must let me reward you!" The man refuses the reward and the buthcher says "Then I'll give you some advice that will ensure you have a long and healthy life: Never eat liver sausage."

Ah, Bill, but a really fresh braunschweiger sandwich with a spot of mayo and some onions and a pint of lager--to die for, and then come back to life for another one...

I love scrapple.

When it sausage, my motto is never read the label. It's one of several things I enjoy eating -- just so long as I don't know what's in them.

Gotta' preview this stuff. That should have read: "When it comes to sausage..." etc. etc.

I love snapple too!!!! all natural ingredients. ( I wonder how many people just read that and called me an idiot, saying scrapple stupid, not snapple. But snapple needs love too.)

Otto von Bismarck said: "Of laws and sausage, it's better not to see them made."

I love snapple too!!!! all natural ingredients. ( I wonder how many people just read that and called me an idiot, saying scrapple stupid, not snapple. But snapple needs love too.)

Snapple is all natural? Here's what's in Snapple Lemonade:
INGREDIENTS: Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Lemon Juice from Concentrate, Gum Acacia, Natural Lemon Flavor with Other Natural Flavors, Salt, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Beta Carotene (for Color).

Here's how I would make lemonade: Water, lemon juice, sugar.

INGREDIENTS: Pork Stock, Pork Livers, Pork Fat, Pork Snouts, Corn Meal, Pork Hearts, Wheat Flour, Salt, Spices.

Now THAT'S natural.

My daughter loves sausage links but won't even consider eating sausage patties. I always thought that was strange. Then I realized I have a similar food affectation. I love chicken wing "flats" but want nothing to do with the "drummies".
Any one else suffer from this strange disorder?

I have cut back on my sausage consumption to one weekend a month. My sausage of choice is the bulk sausage from the Dutch Market on York Road. In addition to breakfast I also love a sausage sandwich on a bun with yellow mustard and a slice of red onion. Sometimes a dill pickle slice.

Any one else suffer from this strange disorder?

No, but I have a bad case of the boogie fever.I think it's going around.

If you want to know what is in your sausage, it is easy enough to make your own.

I'm a confirmed scrapple fan. A recent radio report (might have been NPR or "Good Food" on KCRW) suggested that liver has a number of vitamins that are hard to find in other natural products, and that their benefit might outweigh the downsides from fat and cholesterol.

The only sausage I have tried and not liked was blood sausage. It came as part of a sausage plate at a tapas place in Chicago (Emilio's). I couldn't get past the texture. It also seemed to have cinnamon as an ingredient. Since the other sausages were excellent I assume the blood sausage was well made.

I love scrapple. I adore liver sausages. Blood sausage? Bring it on! Weird pork bits with fat inna tube? Awesome!

Bacon is good, too, but it doesn't have the range (horrible to heavenly) that sausage does.

Terrier Mom,
"I've got the rockin' pneumonia and the boogie woogie flu." Heard that yesterday and your post brought it back.

Andrew Zimern was attending a Liver Mush Festival on yesterdays episode somewhere (I believe) in NC. The stuff looked just like scrapple. It was amazing. I think it's made similarly to scrapple too. The whole pigs head goes in to boil with various other "stuff" including liver and then the various cooked gelatinous parts are ground in a block and cut and fried. Is that like scrapple?

oh, and sausage is very good, but not superior to bacon!


Anyone else noticing the seeming proliferation of gourmet sausage one-upmanship at local stores?

A number of years ago, it seemed that Whole Foods (then Fresh Fields) threw down the gauntlet with a rather adventurous selection of -- oh, say, chicken with feta and spinach.

Then the larger chains followed soon; Safeway, Giant, Superfresh.

Then came the classic sausages; seems I can't swing a casing these days without hitting andouille, chorizo or merguez.

Anyone else afeered of what this dangerous game of sausage brinksmanship may bring us next?

El Generalissimo - with the huge sucess of Tony Bourdain, it can only mean one thing. Entrails.

What? No mention of Ostrowski's??? They rock and they're local... BTW, are there any purveyors of the pig at either the Waverly or B-more Farmers Markets?

GBW, you neglected to mention which of the two Ostrowski's you're a fan of.

mmm...braunschweiger. I used to eat that a lot as a young lad. I miss it greatly.

I'd eat it more now, but its nutritional value leaves a lot to be desired.

Sorry about Nadal, EL. A loss for all of us; it won't be the same watching the rest of the Open. After 31 straight too!

p.s. I prefer bacon to sausage, but I've never had Tennessee sausage, so I'm keeping an open mind. What I really miss about sausage is from my childhood in Texas - Kolaches - the ones with sausage and cheese. You can't get them in Baltimore as far as I can tell. Breakfast heaven! I think they are Polish or Czech - they were a breakfast staple when I was growing up.

I'm beside myself. It's ruined the whole summer. EL


We are sadly bacon-incompatible.

Bacon fans:
Are you more in favor of the fried-from- fresh, or can you tolerate the boxed, pre-cooked stuff that you microwave?

Microwave bacon? Hide your head in shame.

Bacon cooked in the oven, under the broiler, Cleatus. Although sometimes we make BLTs at work using the microwave bacon, because that's the only option there.

Cleatus - one must fry up the fresh bacon.

OMG - what are you talking about? (other than our different preferences regarding how long it is cooked)

I saw a woman on...the Food Network?...some PBS cooking show?...tonight. She was broiling bacon in the oven, but instead of just using plain bacon, she brushed it with a mixture of maple syrup and dijon mustard. It looked wonderful.

I did not mean to appear to disparage sausage. Kielbasa, for one -- cooked on the grill, when the carcinogens in the meat and the carcinogens generated by the grilling make for a very tasty dish. Or once, in Syracuse, I had a delightful dish at the old Caroma restaurant: a platter of Italian sausage cooked with potatoes and gfeen peppers in olive oil. It's hard to imagine that I'm stil alive today.

Oh BG, that's all I meant. Not a deal breaker. I don't understand how you can eat burnt bacon. That's a sin.

McIntyre! Causing trouble all over the place.

Did anybody see the segment of "Fried Food" on the Travel Channel, where they were battering and deep frying bacon? A bit over the top, for most!

I'm with BG, the burnter the bacon the better. When asked how I want my bacon done, I always answer "Incinerated."

We cook everything possible in the toaster oven. Bacon and sausage work really well.

a crime against God

I love my toaster oven. Since I live alone, it is just the right size. Also, it doesn't heat up the kitchen like the oven does.

My partner made biscuits in the toast oven last night. Worked great.

Broil bacon in the oven, but first coat it with Sugar In The Raw. Better than anything ever.

How can we have a Baltimore sausage discussion without anyone mentioning Binkert's?

I swear they put crack in their brats.

I swear they put crack in their brats.

I'm still seeing rowdy kids on the pipe

Binkert's is good. I only wish they were easier to get to by bus.

Bacon: n., a wrapper for filet mignon, scallops, oysters, water chestnuts, and clams.

I love bacon more than sausage, but they are certainly both delicious. My favorite form of sausage is in gravy on a biscuit.

Ostrowski's has great sausage. I like both.

Binkert's is awesome. I enjoy their weisswurst, even though my husband doesn't care for it so much.

Microwave bacon is a travesty.

I know there are some local fellas who sell their own meat products at the market under the JFX. I've bought some things from them, and they are quite good.

And lastly, over Memorial Weekend, I went ahead and made the Bacon Explosion (for those not familiar, google it). Who can argue with bacon wrapped in sausage, wrapped in bacon, and then smoked for 3 hours? It was DIVINE.

Bacon. Must. Be. Crispy. In a restaurant I have to ask for it to be burnt to get it cooked the way I like it. Flabby bacon is a crime. When you pick it up, it should stand erect, proud, strong. No drooping. Shameful.

I can't think of any good reason to restrict oneself to either bacon or sausage. Enjoy both of them!

Nicole, the guys at the JFX market are from Truck Patch Farms. We get quite a bit from them -- mostly pork. I still think Binkert's has the best sausage in the area, but we buy all of our bacon from Truck Patch. Their ribs are good too.

Spicy Sausage + Velveeta + Ro*tel = delicious

To achieve Nirvana, deep fry thy bacon. I'm going to try that bacon preparation, RoCK - thanks! That sounds like the sticky bacon that Hamilton Tavern lays on their burger, which is fab-u-lous.

Burnt bacon is a sin and I for one want to go to bacon heaven.

RoCK, I've put brown sugar coated-and broiled bacon in my homemade cinnamon and bacon gelato...num num num.

I had some very delicious bacon recently--Schaller & Weber double smoked bacon. It had a great flavor and texture. I got it at Ceriello, but they have not had any recently. It is available over the internet, so I may order some from there. Has anyone encountered this bacon anywhere else in Baltimore?

And then there's Canadian bacon, which, I have come to learn, is neither.

Nope, Cleatus, but peameal bacon is Canadian.


Visited Springfield Farms this past weekend, returning with pork sausage and their smoked bacon.

Will compare and report, with mucho gusto.

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About this blog
Richard Gorelick was appointed The Baltimore Sun's restaurant critic in September 2010. Before joining the paper staff fulltime, he contributed freelance criticism and features articles about food to area and regional publications. Along the way, he dispatched for short-distance trucking companies, shilled for cultural non-profits, and assisted in cognitive neurology research – never the subject, always the control.

He takes restaurants seriously but not himself, and his favorite restaurant is the one you love, too.

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