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Italian sausage facts for kids

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Italian sausage
Salsiccia di bra.jpg
Raw rolled italian sausage
Alternative names salsiccia
Course Sausage
Place of origin Italy
Region or state Basilicata
Main ingredients pork, fennel
Variations Various Italian sausages

In North America, Italian sausage (salsiccia in Italian) most often refers to a style of pork sausage. The sausage is often noted for being seasoned with fennel as the primary seasoning. In Italy, however, a wide variety of sausages are made, many of which are quite different from the aforementioned product.

The most common varieties marketed as "Italian sausage" in supermarkets are hot, sweet, and mild. The main difference between hot and mild is the addition of hot red pepper flakes to the spice mix of the former. The difference between mild and sweet is the addition of sweet basil in the latter.

In Australia, a variety of mild salsiccia fresca (literally meaning "fresh sausage") seasoned primarily with fennel is sold as "Italian sausage".

History

Initially known as "lucanica", the first evidence of the sausage dates back to the 5th century BC when the Roman historian Marco Terenzio Varrone described this use of stuffing his meat into the pig intestine together with spices and salt as follows: "They call lucanica a minced meat stuffed into a casing, because our soldiers learned how to prepare it from the Lucanians". Confirmation of the birth in Basilicata are also the writings of Cicero and Martial that mention Lucania as the birthplace of the sausage.

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