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Saucisson, or "saucisson sec," is a variety of thick, dry cured sausage that originates in France. Typically made of pork, or a mixture of pork and other meats, saucisson are a type of charcuterie similar to salami or summer sausage.
Saucisson comes from the Latin salsus meaning salted. The general French word for sausage is saucisse. There are saucisson recipes dating from Roman times, and Gaulish recipes for dried pork.
The word saucisson first appeared in France in 1546 in the Tiers Livre of Rabelais.
Saucisson stuffing is generally made of two-thirds to three-quarters lean meat and the rest fat (largely pork back-fat called bardière). The mixture is ground to different fineness depending on the type of saucisson and mixed with salt, sugar, spices, nitrites and/or saltpeter, and with fermenting bacteria. For instance antilisterial strains of Lactobacillus sakei are used in Europe for the production of saucisson and can be used for the conservation of fresh meat.
Some versions of saucisson also contain pepper seeds, garlic, bits of dried fruits or nuts (such as pistachios, figs, or olives), cheeses such as Roquefort, Laguiole, or alcohols such as wines or Génépi liquor.