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Merguez sausage or acceptable substitute?

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Merguez sausage or acceptable substitute?

elustaz | Dec 23, 2009 06:25 PM

Hey 'hounds,

A Tunisian friend of mine has told me in the same breath a) that I really should learn how to make 'ajja bil-merguez (an egg and sausage dish), and b) I won't be able to find the ingredients. After consulting Claudia Roden's Middle Eastern cookbook, I am sure that he refers to the merguez itself, a spicy Tunisian lamb-and-beef sausage; everything else in Roden's recipe is easy to find. I regard his dual claim as a dare, and am now set on hunting out some merguez, or something very close to it, so I can make this dish.

So does anyone have any leads on where I might accomplish this? I've already tried my usual go-to guys for all things Arab, Phoenicia and Sarah's, and neither of them carries merguez. Of course, there's lots of sausage in Central Texas, but I can't use just anything for this recipe. The strictures I'm trying to follow are that the sausage must be very spicy -- summer sausage will not serve here -- and, if at all possible, there should be no pork involved. (I'm not Muslim, but the recipe comes from people who are, and I'm certain that pork will not work as well for this reason.)

Looking forward to hearing some good ideas!

el-Ustaz

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