I HATE to admit it but I’m a bit of a sausage snob. So when I was set the task of finding out just how good quality sausages are made I jumped at the chance.

Thankfully, Totham Bangers’ sausages are nothing like the powdery, rusk-filled blandness that you may find lurking in the frozen aisles of supermarkets.

Instead, they are chocabloc full of meat and flavour and nothing else. I know, I’ve seen them being made.

Totham Bangers’ founder, Louise Griffiths, 47, explains: “People seem to have this idea sausages are the leftover yucky bits of pork, but if you buy the right sausages they are not. “We only use lean shoulder of pork and it really is just meat. We separate the fat from the meat so we can control how much fat goes into the sausages.

“Sausages should be one of those meals you look forward to and say ‘oh yes, it’s sausage night tonight!”

The former graphic designer and mum-of-two started her sausage-making business 12 years ago when her eldest son was just two years old and she was pregnant with her second son, who is now 11.

She laughs: “I had been working in graphic design for publishers for 20 years and when I had the boys I decided it was all nonsense. I mean, how many times can you reinvent one job? So I left.”

Husband John, 54, admits he thought she was mad but understood her reasons for giving up the day job.

The 54-year-old, who took voluntary redundancy from his own job as a project manager at BAE Systems in Chelmsford five years ago, says: “Lou used to get home quite late at night which was the norm and it was ridiculous.”

He now works alongside Louise in their dedicated sausage-making kitchen set up at the bottom of their garden.

Of course it wasn’t a case of here’s some sausage meat and off you go, says Louise.

She says: “It was trial and error to start with.

“I had seen how most restaurant kitchens work as I’d done a bit of silver service to earn money when I was at university. I enjoy cooking anyway and I saw a gap in the sausage market.

“When I decided I wanted my own business there was no point in making cupcakes – so many people are doing them. “I wanted to do something substantial, something people would eat and think they are the best ones they have ever had.

“Now most of my customers are repeat customers, which is important to me.

“Sausages are not difficult to make, they are just difficult to do well.”

The pork used in Totham Bangers and their other products is from outside reared pigs. The couple used to own their own pigs but found it was more cost effective to buy it in from other local pig farmers. All of the lamb, beef, venison, chicken and goat is also sourced locally.

Totham Bangers’ sausages contain between 90 and 95 per cent meat, depending on what the flavours are.

After perfecting her recipes, Louise began taking them to farmers’ markets.

Twelve years on and Louise and John not only make the sausages, but also sell sausage meat and the skins to those who want to give it a go themselves.

John says: “People are fed up of supermarket sausages and want something real,” he adds.

As well as sausages of various flavours, Totham Bangers also produces its own chorizo, pate and burgers.

Far from going off sausages, Louise and her family enjoy their own products about once a week. But Louise has added a little twist to her own meals.

She says: “I sometimes like to take the skin off the sausages and roll the meat up into balls and cook them in a nice tomato sauce to have with spaghetti.”

You can find Totham Bangers at farmers’ markets across Essex and Suffolk, including the first Friday of each month at Colchester Arts Centre, Maldon, Frinton and Mersea.

Their products are also sold at Olivers Nursery in Witham and Poplar Nurseries in Marks Tey.