Question on drying

Air dried cured Meat Techniques

Question on drying

Postby lou317 » Tue Jul 18, 2017 3:12 pm

I have a question about the drying process . After I stuffed my dry sausage the instructions were to place in an unheated oven for 48-72 hrs , so that the meat starts to ferment .
Then to place them after 72 hrs in the refrigerator until completely dry about 4-5 weeks.
The oven was checked every 4-8 hrs and held a temp of 68-72F with Humidity @60-70% which was fine .
Just for the record I used Bacotoferm T-SPX culture #2 prague and 2 1/2% sea salt (all other sausages at 3% salt were too salty )

SOOO the question is if the 72 F and 60/70% humidity is good for the first 3 days why not fully dry them in an equivilant atmosphere some where . The last time I used the refrigerator the meat never dried so I hung it in a spare room for a week and it firmed up the meat . Either the cutter on the grinder was not sharp enough or the machine wasn't powerful enough and it squeezed the meat through the holes.But either way the meat was too fine.
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Re: Question on drying

Postby NCPaul » Wed Jul 19, 2017 1:52 pm

That would not be safe. The sausage meat is never 100 % free of harmful bacteria. It might be a very small number, but it's not zero. Most processes aim for a five log kill. At elevated temperatures for a long time, even small numbers of harmful bacteria can multiply to a large population. Cooler temperatures slows this growth down. For the fermentation stage, the requirement is to reach a pH of less than 5.3 in less than 1200 degree hours. Degree hours are calculated by subtracting 60F from your fermentation temperature then multiplying that number by the hours at that temperature. So 70F for 72 hours would be 720 degree hours. Are you able to check the pH? How much dextrose or other sugar did you use? Are you still using UMAI bags? Did you use your new stuffer? I believe your drying problems were due to how you made the salami rather than the use of the fridge. The meat should be ground coarsely and packed tightly into the casing without working the meat and the fat into tight paste.
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