By John Keast
Simon Ellery has created a sizzling banger business in Berlin.
And the former Ashburton butcher is back home on holiday – making sausages.
He teamed up with brother-in-law Kenny Johnston – who trained him in butchery – brother Peter, a Christchurch builder, and Kenny’s wife, Karen, to turn 15kg of lean pork and apple, pumpkin, caramelised onion, pepper and salt, apple, cheddar cheese, pickled jalapenos and walnuts – and more – into bangers.
It was a team operation, with Mr Ellery directing operations from the Johnston kitchen.
Mr Ellery has lived in Berlin for eight years, moving there after working as a butcher in London.
In Berlin – where sausages are much loved – he set up a gourmet sausage and smallgoods business called The Sausage Man Never Sleeps.
He is a fleischermeister, or master butcher, and sells his creations to restaurants and cafes and to a market loved by ex-pat Kiwis.
Mr Ellery, who grew up in Ashburton, said his bangers had no fillers and were selling well.
He employs two staff.
Mr Johnston knows the operation, as he went to Berlin last year to help out.
Although he has a lawn and garden business, he keeps his hand in by processing meat for farmer clients.
And as the Ashburton sausage operation swung into gear, Mr Johnston minced the pork and diced pumpkin and apple, wife Karen measured out ingredients, and Mr Ellery’s brother, Peter, helped with blending the ingredients.
Mr Ellery said the test of whether the mix was ready to put into casings was to form a pattie on the hand, hand the hand over, and if the pattie stayed there for 10 seconds, it was ready to go.
He said Berlin was an exciting, bustling city and a far cry from the quiet of Hakatere, which he visited at the weekend.
Before he goes back to Berlin and his bangers, Mr Ellery is off to Bluff.