What Is Lorne Sausage?
Lorne sausage, also known as "square slice sausage," is an essential part of a traditional Scottish breakfast. However, there is no right time of day to enjoy this uniquely Scottish fare, and it’s often scarfed down as a sandwich or bread roll filling from breakfast to supper time.
The Scots love Lorne sausage so much that they want it added to the list of PGI protected foods. That would mean it could only be called "Lorne sausage" if it was made in Scotland. The same EU law has been used to ensure the authenticity of another fine Scottish delicacy: Arbroath Smokies.
There are two opposing theories about how this meat was named. One theory is that it was invented by Glasgow theatre performer and comedian Tommy Lorne who died in 1935. One of his catchphrases, "sausages are the boys,” reflected his love of sausages. Tommy was often found in his dressing room between acts cooking up his favorite sausages. Others claim its name stems from the Firth of Lorne located within Argyle and Bute on the west coast of Scotland.
Scottish Lorne Sausages Recipe
- 1 pound (450g) minced beef
- 1 pound (450g) minced pork (not too lean or the sausage will be dry, pork belly is fine)
- 6 ounces (170g) fresh breadcrumbs
- 4 fluid ounces (115ml) iced water
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- 1½ teaspoons coriander
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- Place all the ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix by hand ensuring that the pork and beef are mixed evenly.
- Firmly pack the mix into a loaf tin or rectangular pan about 10" x 4" x 3".
- Place the Lorne Sausage meat block in the freezer until its stiff enough to slice.
- Remove the mixture from the loaf tin and cut it into slices around half an inch thick.
- Set aside a few slices for immediate consumption.
- Place the rest into freezer bags separated with greaseproof paper and place back in the freezer.
- Allow time to defrost thoroughly and fry in a little oil until golden brown and cooked through. Serve Hot.
If you ever meet a Scot who has emigrated or has been working abroad for any length of time ask them what they miss most about Scotland. I guarantee you that Lorne sausage will be amongst the first words they utter. So give them a try, but be aware, they are extremely addictive.
Innes on April 15, 2020:
Followed your recipe, a few mins ago. It’s in the freezer now. Will let you know how it goes.
Oh, I used pork sausage meat as opposed mince.
Buteman on October 27, 2019:
The pink colour ,,,, well in this day and age I couldn't tell you but years ago working in a butcher shop in East Kilbride ( and I'm sure many other butcher shops in Scotland ) the use of saltpetre was the way to keep sausage bright.
I'm sure now that this product is no longer in use, when I made the bacon in my shop ( I made Ayrshire middle. Belfast ham, and a lean unsmoked English back bacon I used sodium nitrite to hold the colour.
Sodium nitrite ,, of course the idiots that sit behind a desk playing with food nutrition will tell people how bad food products are for you if they contain sodium nitrite. Utter nonsense, when I made up my brine to cure my bacon and ham the amount of sodium nitrite I added was absolutely minuscule.
In fact one could eat these products I produced for years and years and it would never do you any harm whatsoever ,, and that is a proven fact. It really is ridiculous the amount of misinformation that is spewed out regarding the food we eat by these so called " experts ".
Glasgow1994 on March 19, 2019:
Pork in Lorne Sausage? Heathen
DeeBeeKay on February 11, 2018:
There are two main theories as to where the name of the sausage originates: Named after Tommy Lorne, a Scottish music hall comedian of the 1920s. Named after the region of Lorne in Argyll -https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lorne_sausage
Janette Preston on January 17, 2018:
It doesn't mention anything in this recipe about having to grind the meat, will it be ok to just mix it by hand. ?
Cathie young on September 12, 2017:
How can I get the pink colour
liz greenaway on June 30, 2017:
looking foward to making all of them x
kenngwen on June 29, 2017:
Will give the square sausage recipe a go.Add Your Comment...
Craig on July 21, 2016:
Rhonda, put this into your browser Richard Farish (AKA Sausagemaker) and you will get some fantastic ideas and recipes for all kinds of sausages
rhonda moulton on July 04, 2016:
Does anyone have a recipe to make scotch Link sauage? We raise our own meat and I would love to make some. Thank you
Agnes smith on November 17, 2015:
Just found this great page of Scottish cooking ..love it
James (or Jimmy) on October 16, 2015:
I'm a Scot(t?) and I work abroad a lot. I miss Irn-Bru more to be honest. Also... Diced onion is good through it as well. And if you're crazy for spice like I am; then some chilli through it gives it a kick, if not only just to see peoples reaction at breakfast.
Gav on January 23, 2015:
I've used a recipe very similar to this and it when it's raw, it looks like the square sausage from home and it smells like the square sausage from home. When cooking, though, it cooks too dark and ends up looking like a burger. A quality slice of cooked square should only be a few shades pinker than its raw equivalent. Any ideas how to achieve that?
(Incidentally, it tastes like home when popped on a roll and with a drizzle of HP sauce, which I suppose is the main thing!)
Kirsty on January 04, 2015:
"Scots" not "Scotts"
JO on September 25, 2014:
Scott is a boys name not a native of Scotland.
stessily on February 15, 2012:
Peter, It is my hope that Lorne Sausage achieves PGI status!
The history of this beloved dish is fascinating, which seems to be a truism for all quintessentially Scottish dishes.
Derdriu on January 27, 2012:
Peter Hoggan, Lorne sausage most definitely needs to be added to the list of PGI protected foods! The colors, the coriander and nutmeg, the square shape and the texture are unique.
It's such great learning fun to read your series on the incomparable, tasty, unique dishes of Scotland. It's easy to remember each one because of the choice photos (such as the opening one here), the clear directions, and the cultural/historical context.
Thank you for sharing, voted up + all,
Peter Hoggan (author) from Scotland on January 13, 2012:
Get that meat grinder dusted off. I am sure you will enjoy this Lorne Sausage recipe if you give it a go.
cometdog on January 13, 2012:
This reminded me of the James Herriot books, in particular, the part where he has home made sausage for the first time. It also made me hungry. Voted up. I have my grandpa's old meat grinder. Maybe I'll give this a try.