Like Guinness, Gaeilge and the great Full Irish brekkie, the humble sausage is something we Irish are inherently proud of.
And what would this breakfast of champions be without the humble sausage?
Boasting some of the best and finest meat produce in the whole world, Ireland has set the delicious meat bar high – and we'd rather sit through a month of Mondays than fall at the first hurdle.
Now, riddle me this, have you ever cracked out the pan, to whip up a monumental amount of bangers for you and yours, only to blink and this happens?
Yeah, us too.
Firstly - there's no shame in it. Some people like their meat well done (we know, dismal), but for those of you interested in the finer things in life - we suggest you read on.
After much research (and vast amounts of sausage consumption) we've finally sussed how you, at home, can rustle up the perfect sausage – free of cracks, burnt skin or general rubbish behaviour. What a time to be alive.
So, let's cut to the chase, shall we?
The trick is to pan-fry them – with a generous dollop of butter – long and slow, at a very low heat, for at least 40 minutes. A long time to wait for a snack, we know, but so, so worth it.
Tip 1: Never, and we repeat NEVER, prick the sausage. This allows the juices to escape along with the fat, which will seep out anyway through the semi-permeable membrane of the natural casing if you fry it on a low heat for a long time.
Tip 2: Use a heat diffuser.
Tip 3: Use a frying pan with a thick base. Thicker pans maintain the heat of the pan, without having hotspots, far better than their thinner counterparts.
Check out this video for more.
A couple of other thing to consider too:
If you're cooking for large numbers, it may easier to bake them at 180C/350F/gas mark 4 for 20 minutes, making sure to turn them over at least twice. And if you're barbecuing, blanch the sausages in boiling water for 10 minutes before committing them to the flames.
You may slightly regret reading this article because now you've no excuse.
(But you're about to be crowned the Tsar(ina) of Sausage, so I wouldn't worry too much about it)