I really, really don’t want to do this, but I have to make this statement for legal reasons. Ballineen products are not made from excrement… you may think so, but they aren’t and never have been. I would like to take this moment to apologise unreservedly to any turds that may have been offended by the title of this article. Right with that out the way, let’s get down to business. I thought I’d trawled the depths of sausage hell with my Value Sausage sword fight, turns out I was so, so wrong.
For weeks I have been contemplating going to my local Iceland to get some frozen sliced doner meat for review, but with my local store being a right pain in the arse to get to, I’ve kept putting it off and putting it off. However, When Al suggested these on our Facebook page and said how revolting they were, I was bang up for the challenge. I rather naively thought these would actually be like the ones you get in the chip shop and it would be a doddle. As I typed that sentence, with the benefit of hindsight, I’m recalling the words of Admiral Akbar.
After cutting open the bag, I lined up the little
turds soldiers in a row and lit the oven. Before popping them in to bake, I gave one a sniff. The scent was decidedly industrial. A cross between wallpaper paste and wet cardboard. OK, they’re still frozen, but that’s when I started to get the fear that Al had indeed set me up for a fall.
Once cooked, I sliced one open to get you a good shot of the mushy contents. Even cooked, the smell hadn’t improved and still had a whiff of the builders merchants. Every single value sausage I’ve tried had a better aroma, even the Asda ones that made me puke.
At this point our dogs came into the kitchen, hungry. I opened this dog food for them as the battered molten mushy marvels cooled. It is not an exaggeration to say that the dog food smelled much, much better than Ballineen’s finest. I think that’s speaks volumes.
It was time to taste. They’d be yummy, wouldn’t they just like the ones from the local chippy? Tentatively I stripped one of the soldiers of its batter and gave it a go. I can only describe the flavour as what I think raw flour paste with added mashed up newspaper would taste like. Absolutely disgusting. I bit into one of the Irish “sausages”, note the quotation marks, to see if that would be better. No. You have to give it to Ballineen, it is quite a feat to make the sausage taste almost exactly the same as the batter. Vile, unseasoned and industrial. Not a hint of pork, sage, mace or indeed anything. If there was anything I could put my finger on, it would be greaves from a previous review, an industrial rendering by-product.
The dogs got the rest, but after already having eaten, they lost interest after one. Ballineen say that if you like this product, you should try their Irish sausage bites… yeah I think I’ll give them a miss!
Ten minutes after my last bite, my guts started to feel like a washing machine. I’ve been ‘eating clean’ as they say, for the last few weeks and these greasy oddities shat out of the corporate food pipe, made me feel like I had an alien inside of me doing cartwheels. Thankfully, after a Zantac tablet, normal service was resumed in 30 minutes. Thanks Al, thanks a lot! 😉
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