Chinese sausage is a generic term referring to the many different types of sausages originating in China. It is commonly known by its Cantonese name "Lap Cheong" or "Lap Chong" (written as "臘腸" in Chinese).
There is a choice of fatty or skimmed sausages. There are different kinds ranging from those made using fresh pork to those made using pig livers, duck livers and even turkey livers. Usually a livery sausage will be darker in colour than one made without liver. Recently, there have even been countries producing chicken Chinese sausages. Traditionally they are classified into two main types. It is sometimes rolled and steamed in dim sum.
- Lap Chang (臘腸) is a dried, hard sausage usually made from pork and a high content of fat. It is normally smoked, sweetened, and seasoned with Rose water, rice wine and soy sauce.
- Ren Chang (膶腸) is made using duck liver.
- Xiang Chang (香腸) is a fresh and plump sausage consisting of coarsely chopped pieces of pork and un-rendered pork fat. The sausage is rather sweet in taste.
- Nuomi Chang (糯米腸) is a white coloured sausage consisting of glutinous rice and flavouring stuffed into a casing and then steamed or boiled until cooked. The Nuomi Chang of some Chinese cultures have blood as a binding agent similar to Korean Sundae.
- Xue Chang (血腸) are Chinese blood sausages that have blood as the primary ingredient. Bairouxue Chang (白肉血腸) is a type of sausage popular in the North East of China that includes chopped meat in the blood mixture.
Our local Chinese wholesaler sells lots of different Chinese sausages but as most of the packaging is only in Chinese it is difficult to determine the type and original ingredients. From the taste I would say the sausages pictured were Lap Chang. They had a quite distinct flavour with quite a strong sweet note. Sliced thinly and fried, they made an interesting addition to egg fried rice.
I doubt you will find these in most supermarkets, but make an effort to find your local Chinese ingredient supplier and hunt down a pack or two. They should last quite a while if refrigerated and have multiple uses in your recipes.
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