Catalonia boasts a whole range of cooked sausages made from different ingredients, associated with certain regions of the country, and available in a variety of shapes and sizes. The thickest of them all is bull, which is made from pig’s bladder or intestine stuffed with minced pork. The bull sausage associated with the Bages region in central Catalonia is known as donegal, and it has its own geographical indication, guaranteeing the origin and quality of the product.
As an aside, the reason why this thick sausage is known as bull is because as well as minced pork it contains meat from other parts of the pig, such as snout and tongue, which require boiling (’boil’ is ’bullir’ in Catalan) to make them tender before they are mixed with the other ingredients and then cooked a second time.
The sausage comes in three main types: white donegal, which is prepared with only lean meats and without adding any pig’s blood; black donegal, which does include pig’s blood, causing the meat to take on a black colour when cooked; and tongue donegal, which, as the name suggests, is largely made with this part of the animal. All three types of donegal bull can be eaten as they are, grilled, fried or added to other cooked dishes.
As in other parts of Spain, Catalonia has a long tradition of producing cooked sausages, which are known under the general name of embotit, and which are widely available in shops, markets and craft fairs all over the country.