Monday, December 8, 2008

Elk Sausages for Christmas!

Photo: Male elk, or wapiti, forages for food under a thick blanket of snow

As food vendors focus on unusual twists among traditional Christmas fare, here is something that may top the bill: elk sausages!

These huge, dark-coloured sausages are a blend of elk, huckleberries and port. They can be found on the meat counter of the Golden Gate Meat Company in the Ferry Building at the Embarcadero.

We saw them at the weekend sitting amongst an array of differently filled sausages - and tried them for tea.

Verdict: the elk has a strong flavour, like venison, and the huckleberries go well with it. I'm not sure the port stands out, but the overall effect is... a strongly flavoursome sausage.

All I can say is that it's a good job they're not made of reindeer, because who knows if poor Rudolph would lose a friend of two in these Christmas culinary endeavours.

***Elks, according to Wikipedia, are one of the largest species of deer of which only the moose is larger, while 'Sambar' deer can be of the same size. They are also called wapiti, a Native American word meaning 'light-coloured deer'.

And they are impressive in size, the bulls - males - reaching nine feet in height, five feet of animal and four feet of antlers! The National Geographic website says that today they live mostly in western North America, especially in mountainous landscapes such as Wyoming's National Elk Refuge and Yellowstone National Park, although some eastern U.S. states have reintroduced small elk herds into heavily wooded wilderness areas.

For more info:
I have used this beautiful pic from their website, the photographer being Norbert Rosing

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