Sausage Salad (Wurstsalat)

After a few days of staying with us in Zurich, my British friend remarked that the Swiss were rather obsessed with sausages. I never thought about it, but yes, I guess we do love our sausages and eat them often and in many different ways. One might say this is not a healthy eating habit according to the current dietary guidelines, but all in all I think we’re quite a healthy nation, so I’m relaxed about it. Some sausages need to be cooked, others like the Cervelat can be eaten cooked or uncooked. Traditionally the Swiss like to eat a good, hearty, warm lunch and don’t mind a simple, cold dinner. In my childhood, lunch was always the main meal and dinner very simple and often cold, like this sausage salad which has accompanied me ever since I was a child. It can be eaten with just a slice of bread, but I like it with Rösti. Of course home-made Rösti is best, but if I’m in a hurry like today I don’t mind the pre-cooked one. But it needs to be the Hero Rösti. One reason might be that the Hero vegetables tinning factory used to be in my hometown, Frauenfeld – the factory started in 1906 as the oldest tinning factory of Switzerland and ceased production in 1998 (story here). But also because I think it’s just the best pre-made Rösti available. If you order a sausage salad (most often it’s a sausage cheese salad) in a restaurant, it’s quite a heavy dish with lots of cheese and a very rich dressing. I’m not a fan of such heavy dishes, and my family’s sausage salad has always been this much lighter version. I still prepare it the same way my mother used to do it when I was small.

Recipe for 4 people

  • 4 good quality Cervelats (look out for at least 45% meat, or just buy some butcher-made ones in a butchery)
  • 2-3 tomatoes
  • 1/3 cucumber
  • 2-3 boiled eggs
  • A handful of parsley
  • 70g hard cheese
  • Rösti (home-made or pre-made)

Dressing

  • 4 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 5 tbsp of sunflower oil (or a little more if you like your dressing oily)
  • 2.5 tsp of mayonnaise
  • 2.5 tsp of mild Swiss mustard
  • 4 tsp of plain yoghurt
  • Aromat, pepper, Maggi

Method

Prepare Rösti.

Peel Cervelats, cut them length-wise in quarters and then slice them.

Chop tomaotes and cucumber. Slice the eggs. Cut the cheese in small cubes. Chop parsley. Put everything into a bowl.

Put all ingredients for the dressing into a small bowl and mix or shake until smooth.

Pour dressing over the salad and mix well. It’s ok if the egg yolk mixes with the dressing, it gives the dressing a nice, smooth taste and texture.

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