British bangers are losing their bang because modern recipes are leaner and healthier, scientists have found.
A study found that today’s sausages made much less of a sizzle when being cooked because they generally contain less fat and water than traditional recipes from the past.
Food researchers even found that each type of sausage could be identified by its own unique sizzle in the pan.
Sausages became known as bangers because of the loud sizzle and pop they made when being cooked.
When meat was scarce recipes would be bulked out with cereal, water and fat, which would lead to an even louder noise in the pan.
Dr Stuart Farrimond, a food scientist from Wiltshire, analysed sausage recipes dating back as far as 1845 to find out which bangers made the most racket when being cooked.
Measuring decibel levels in the kitchen he concluded that today’s popular sausages were around half as loud as recipes from before the Second World War.
Sausage recipes from pre-1950 produced louder sizzles – at 75.5 decibels (dB) – than modern recipes at 71.4dB.
In comparison, the average volume a human being uses in normal conversation measures between 60-65dB.
The loudest, most aggressive sizzles were generated by the Kentish sausage, made using a recipe dating back to 1845. It measured 78db, louder than a car travelling at 65mph.
The quietest sausage was the Lincolnshire, measuring 68dB.
Dr Farrimond said: “After analysing the data produced in the lab I was able to verify the secret to a loud and satisfying sizzle, and the reason sausages were originally nicknamed bangers, is a high water content which is exactly the thing you want less of for a great taste.
“Due to food shortages after the outbreak of the First World War, sausages were made with less lean meat, and bulked out with fat, fillers and water.
“Sometimes, water made up more than a quarter of the weight of a sausage hence the much louder sizzle.
“Today, sausages are made with higher quality, leaner pork and less water, meaning they may taste great, but don’t quite hit the top notes of sizzle we used to hear in the past.”
A British Sausage Week survey of 2,000 people found one in two rate sizzling sausages as their favourite sound from the kitchen.