There are few sounds more satisfying than the sizzling of sausages, but new research has found that modern bangers are losing their bang.
Food scientist Dr Stuart Farrimond tested the loudness of sausages while they cooked and found that the latest recipes barely make a pop.
He said as sausages have become healthier, with less fat and less water, they’ve also become quieter.
Dr Farrimond tested recipes dating back to 1845 to draw his conclusions.
He found that sausage recipes from before 1950 produced the loudest sizzles at 75.5 decibels (dB). In comparison modern sausages averaged at around 71.4dB.
“After analysing the data produced in the lab I was able to verify, the secret to a loud and satisfying sizzle – and the reason sausages were originally nicknamed bangers – is a high water content, exactly the thing you want less of for a great taste,” Dr Farrimond said, according to The Telegraph.
“Due to food shortages after the outbreak of World War I, sausages were made with less lean meat, and bulked out with fat, fillers and water – sometimes with water making up more than a quarter of the weight of a sausage.
“Today, sausages are made with higher quality, leaner pork and less water, meaning they may taste great, but don’t quite hit the top notes of sizzle we used to hear in the past.”
Dr Farrimond also found that the type of sausage played a big part in its cooking sound, as well as the year its original recipe was from.
“I was surprised by how different the sausages were,” he told The Huffington Post UK.
“The old Kentish sausage was incredibly loud and vicious! It gave out jets of hot steam as the water inside suddenly escaped. It’s not hard to imagine why sausages were originally called ‘bangers’ when you have cooked a truly traditional sausage.
“The relevance for the consumer is that the amount of sizzling can be used as a proxy for its quality. Louder sizzling generally indicates more moisture and less meat.”
The fact that sausages are healthier now than they were in the past will be good news for many consumers.
Earlier this year a large-scale study analysing how our eating habits have changed in the past 40 years showed we’re more health conscious than previous generations.
Our consumption of white bread has dropped by 75% since 1974, while brown and wholemeal bread has risen by 85%. Likewise skimmed milk has overtaken whole milk since the 1990s.
So while you may miss the sound of a load sausage, the news of healthier bangers will (hopefully) be music to your ears.