How long!

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How long!

Postby welsh wizard » Sat Apr 02, 2005 12:16 pm

How long does the average sasuage keep in the fridge before it goes off? I understand it somewhat depends on what goes in it, but does anyone have any idea? I ask because I would like to make a quantity and not have to freeze them - are any sausages better suited to freezing than others?....................I know questions, questions..... :shock:
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Postby aris » Sat Apr 02, 2005 1:37 pm

Sausage is just like any other meat - mincing it and stuffing into a casing will not make it last any longer. If you bought fresh meat with a use-by date of a particular date, and made sausage from it, then use that as your use-by date.

There are preservatives you can add to prolong the life of a fresh sausage such as Sodium Metabisulphite, but I think this defeats the point of making your own sausage.
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Postby sausagemaker » Sat Apr 02, 2005 1:46 pm

If you intend to make sausage without preservative you want to be looking at a shelf life of no more than 48 hours MAX, with preservative you could expect 5 - 7 days

Aris

I need to disagree with you over the shelf life issue as soon as you mince any meat the shelf life diminishes as the bacteria that was on the outside of the meats are now spread through, thus making the shelf life less.

hope this helps

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Postby Platypus » Sat Apr 02, 2005 4:08 pm

I think you are both right IF you add a little common sense into the equation.

The shelf life is a good indicator, so long as the shop has looked after the meat properly, and any handling of the meat will reduce it's keeping properties.

But generally, the look, feel, and smell will give you the best indication of the useability of any meat intended for cooking. The notable exeptions to this rule are E Coli and Botulism, but if you have not encountered these before and are using meat from a good source there is little reason to worry.

5 days MAX in the fridge is a good rule of thumb.
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Postby sausagemaker » Sat Apr 02, 2005 5:13 pm

I beg to differ

There are too many variable to be able to go by the shops best before date.
1. It is no longer in the packaging it was supplied in
2. You are handling the meat
3. You are mincing it up thus opening up more meat surfaces to bacterial contact
4. Increasing the temperature through mincing & mixing
5. The longer it is in the open the more chance of bacterial infection.

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Postby Oddley » Sat Apr 02, 2005 5:52 pm

Has any body had food poisoning, I have once. I was served a cloudy pint of beer in the pub, but you know what it's like I drank it anyway. I was up spewing my heart out and feeling like death all night.

My sister did a classic. On a hot day she bought a nice piece of chicken in the morning for her husband . She then went to work. On returning home she cooked the chicken that she had, had with her all day. Result her husband spent a week in hospital and nearly died. Oh well she had the hump with him anyway.
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Postby aris » Sat Apr 02, 2005 6:34 pm

Sausagemaker - yes I agree with you, but my assumption was that he was buying pre-minced meat.

As for food poisoning - yes i've had it and it is horrible. Got it from a nibble of a piece of cooked duck which had been out too long. I too may have died if I ate more than just a nibble.
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Postby Platypus » Sat Apr 02, 2005 6:40 pm

Yes, there are lots of variables, BUT you have to start somewhere!

Clean hands/equipment, keep the temp low, don't have it out in the open any longer than you have to etc ARE all common sense.

But without the sell/best by date you have NOTHING to go with!

Yes I have had food poisoning befor (not by home prepared food tho') and no I don't wish to repeat the experiance, but unless you have a bacteriometer (OK I just made that up :) ) then the best thing to go by is common sense and the sell by date.

Don't forget we regularly hang meat for long periods specifically so they will rot a bit just to improve the flavour!
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Postby Spuddy » Sat Apr 02, 2005 6:43 pm

I had Campylobacter poisoning once from a vending machine meal in a works canteen about ten years ago. I was off work for two weeks with a high fever and bloody diarrhoea (literally), on some powerful antibiotics.
Not recommended!
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Postby sausagemaker » Sat Apr 02, 2005 6:53 pm

I think we need to agree to disagree on this one, coming from the meat industry as I do the shelf life indicator is as the product is sold & not changed in any way including opening of the package.

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Postby Platypus » Sat Apr 02, 2005 7:04 pm

Yeah OK sausagemaker, but as you say the shelf life is only an indicator and even then, as spuddy can testify, even if the package is unopened you still have to place your trust in those before you.

So after you have opened the package and messed around with the contents I don't see that there is much left other than common sense.
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Postby welsh wizard » Sun Apr 03, 2005 8:21 am

Many thanks for all your replies, but with all the tallk of dicky tummies I think I will point the sausage maker directly in front of the old frying pan and cook them as they are produced.

I have a great deal of sympathy with Oddley, I too come home from the pub not feeling quite the full ticket after consuming large quantities of brown, foul smelling, belly distending fluids - I will have to tell the wife I had a cloudy pint as I am sure she will have a great deal of sympathy! Seriously though I know it is no fun being poisioned I got caught when I was in Uni and the medical center gave me an asprin!!!!!!!!!!! which of course I threw straight back at them, but not with my hands.
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