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The cuisine of Hungary produces a vast number of types of sausages. The most common smoked Hungarian sausages are Gyulai kolbász, Csabai kolbász, Csemege kolbász, Házi kolbász, Cserkész kolbász, lightly smoked, like Debreceni kolbász (or Debrecener) and Lecsókolbász, a spicy sausage made specifically for serving as part of the dish lecsó, a vegetable stew with peppers and tomatoes. Hungarian boiled sausages are called "hurka", liver sausage, "májas", and blood sausage, "véres". The main ingredient is liver and rice, or blood and rice. Spices, pepper and salt are added.
Different regions in Hungary may have their own sausage recipes and tastes. The Hungarian sausages may be boiled, fresh or dried and smoked, with different spices and flavours, "hot" or "mild". These sausages may be eaten like a cold cut or used in the main courses. The Hungarian cuisine uses the different types of sausages in many ways, in vegetable stews, soups, potato stews like "paprikás krumpli" (paprika-based stew with spicy sausage and potatoes), bean soups like Jókai bableves, in meat stews, in some goulash soup variations, pastry dishes and even salads. The smoked sausages may contain bacon, ground pork, beef, boar or lamb, paprika, salt, garlic, black pepper, allspice, white pepper, caraway, nutmeg, zest, marjoram, cayenne pepper, sugar, white wine or cognac. The meat is coarsely ground and salted. If garlic is added, it is mashed in water to produce a slurry and added to the meat along with spices. The sausage is then stuffed into natural casings in 1-foot links - usually using the small intestine of the pig. This traditionally took place outside on the fall day when a pig was slaughtered. The sausage is then hung overnight to allow the flavors to meld and some of the grease to drip out. It is now ready to be used fresh and unsmoked. Fresh sausages may have additional ingredients like liver, mushroom, bread, rice, lemon juice, eggs, cream or milk. The unsmoked sausages are typically roasted with sauerkraut or red or green cabbage, and served with mashed potatoes.
The dry sausages are cold smoked and hung to cure before use.
The best known and most popular versions are:
"Gyulai" - sausage is a different sausage, using different spices. It is named after the Hungarian town of Gyula. At the World Exhibition of Food in Brussel 1935, the Gyulai kolbász (which also has PGI protection) was awarded a gold diploma. The sausage may be cut into thin slices and eaten alone or with bread. They are also added to many Hungarian dishes including lecsó and potato/egg casserole (rakott krumpli).
"Debreceni sausage" is usually unsmoked or more mildly smoked, with a strong paprika flavour and used for cooking.