Bavarian butcher turns Weißwurst green
A hobby butcher and a lecturer from Bavaria have shaken up the sausage world by creating a bright green, tea-flavoured variety of the southern state's famous white sausage - the Weißwurst.
Their invention, made by mixing a Japanese green tea powder called Matcha into the traditional white veal sausage meat, is the result of a "crazy idea" by lecturer Werner Gropp, 55, made a reality by his friend, 27-year-old butcher Markus Hinterberger.
The unusual invention has raised some controversy among the sausage-eating Bavarian public in their village of Oberholzhausen, near the Austrian border.
"Some people said it was disgusting and were very negative," Hinterberger told The Local on Thursday. "But we also got positive comments. Some people said it was a great thing – a new discovery."
And ex-marketing manager Gropp is already in talks with companies in Europe and Japan, hoping to sell the rights to manufacture the green Weißwurst around the world.
But the luminous banger only came about thanks to a chance, crazy idea, Gropp explained.
He had travelled to Japan for work, discovered the tea at a traditional ceremony on his trip and brought a supply home with him.
"He's a passionate tea-drinker," Hinterberger said. "And at some point he came upon this idea to combine the drink with our Bavarian cult sausage – in a way, to unite two different worlds."
Gropp told The Local he had somehow been inspired to cross together two centuries-old culinary traditions from opposite ends of the globe.
When he first approached his friend with the plan for green Weißwurst, Hinterberger did not take to it immediately, according to Gropp.
"At first he thought I was crazy, he just thought 'My God, Weißwurst is sacrosanct, we can't touch it'," he said.
But after tasting the first prototype, the pair knew they were on to a winner, and with the demand they experienced after releasing the new sausage to the public they decided to patent the recipe.
The flavour, like the colour scheme, is said to be a departure from the Bavarian sausage norm.
"Matcha has a slightly tart note to it," Hinterberger said. "But it's about the mixture of flavours between the Weißwurst and the Matcha. You just have to try it."