Records show that sausages date back to the primitive period. In Homer’s The Odyssey from 8th century B.C., there are references to a blood and grease sausage wrapped in a goat’s intestine.
In Portuguese the word “enchido” (sausage) comprises a wide range of foods which comprehend the use of animal intestines with different types of stuffing. These products are usually smoke-dried before consumption. The process of smoke-drying and the conservation in salt are due to the necessity of preserving meat over long periods of time. Both preservation methods are slow and can take months, smoke-drying can be through direct or indirect exposure to fire or smoke.
Smoke has a preservative effect that, when allied to heat, results in the reduction of the humidity levels essential to control the development of microorganisms; smoke can also be characterized by its bactericidal and disinfectant effects. Besides all this, smoke has also the effect of phenols which are antioxidants and inhibit the oxidation of the grease.
Smoked products develop sensory characteristics like the outer golden coloration, the smoked flavour and the pleasant succulent texture.