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Braunschweiger (named after Braunschweig, Germany) is a type of liverwurst (pork liver sausage) which, if stuffed in natural casings, is nearly always smoked. Commercial products often contain smoked bacon, and are stuffed into fibrous casings.
The USDA requires that the product contain a minimum of 30% liver (pork, calf, veal, beef, etc.), lean meat (can include mechanically separated poultry), fat meat, binders and seasonings. A typical commercial formula is about 40% pork liver or scalded beef liver, 30% scalded pork jowl, 20% lean pork trimmings and 10% bacon ends and pieces. Added seasonings include salt and often include white pepper, onion powder or chopped onion, and mace. Curing ingredients (sodium erythorbate and sodium nitrite) are optional.
Braunschweiger has a very high amount of vitamin A, iron, protein and fat. The meat has a very soft, spread-like texture and a distinctive spicy liver-based flavor, very similar to the Nordic leverpastej. It is usually used as a spread for toast, but can also be used as a filling for sandwiches, often paired with stone-ground mustard, sliced tomato, onion and cheese. In the Midwestern United States, braunschweiger is typically enjoyed in a sandwich with various condiments such as ketchup, mustard, and dill pickles, or simply spread on crackers. There are also a few recipes for pâté and cheese balls which use braunschweiger as a primary ingredient. Pâté is creamier than braunschweiger.
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