Trying to get into the hobby

Air dried cured Meat Techniques

Trying to get into the hobby

Postby ryankelley » Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:37 pm

I've made a lot of fresh sausage, but never a fermented sausage. Recently I made pancetta following a recipe I found online. It came out very good. I have a duck prosciutto in my refrigerator right now...drying I hope.

I'd like to make a few fermented sausages, but lack the space store equipment. I've read about fermentation chambers and drying chambers, cures (1 &2), starter cultures. It all makes sense to me and I'd like to do it. But before I commit square footage and money to it I'd like to try a few salami first.

How far can someone go using the vegetable drawer in the a refrigerator that's dedicated to regular household use as drying chamber? I measured the temp and it's about 40 degrees. I don't have a way to measure humidity yet.

I have a sous vide which I understand will work for the fermentation...sealed in a bag humidity is proper and the water I submerge into will be whatever temperature I want.

I have a meat grinder attachment to my kitchenaid, a vertical sausage stuffer, and plenty of casings, spices, pork, fat back, venison, and beef. If I can make this work, all I need to buy is cure #2 and dextrose.

I don't have a garage, basement, or attic...my "hobby space" is limited. Any suggestions for a guy like me that wants to give it a try first to determine how far I want to go with this?
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Re: Trying to get into the hobby

Postby NCPaul » Wed Jan 06, 2016 2:12 pm

Welcome to the forum. :D I just posted a thread that might help you. It requires sheep casings but otherwise should be suitable. The product will not be quite the same as a salami but doesn't require anything you don't have. Please post if you give it a try.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=12580
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Re: Trying to get into the hobby

Postby johngaltsmotor » Wed Jan 06, 2016 3:57 pm

The recipes that Paul posted would probably be a good place to start.

One thing to note: smaller sausages diameter are going to be easier to be successful on without controls. The likely problem with just putting them in a refrigerator would be that they dry too fast (refrigerators are by design low moisture), so smaller diameter means that there is less risk of case hardening before they achieve a sufficient moisture loss.
Being in the vegetable drawer might reduce airflow enough to limit the moisture loss to an acceptable range. But from my own experience, if his recipe was based on sitting exposed in a refrigerator I would start there without modification. Once you're hooked on the hobby you'll easily justify accommodating changes to your refrigerator layout.
Pigs are magical creatures.... they turn vegetables into BACON!!
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Re: Trying to get into the hobby

Postby ryankelley » Wed Jan 06, 2016 8:31 pm

Looks like a nice sausage. I'll definitely give it a try. Thanks for all the pictures!

I bought a hygrometer/thermometer, starter culture, dextrose, and cure#2. My other post about the sous vide has me confident enough to do this without the standard equipment.
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Re: Trying to get into the hobby

Postby NCPaul » Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:21 pm

Take note that these only need cure # 1 since they are finished in about 2 weeks using sheep casings.
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