I can't wait...

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Re: I can't wait...

Postby johngaltsmotor » Mon Dec 07, 2015 8:52 pm

Looks delicious :drool:

Unfortunately I've been recovering from a case of bronchitis and I don't want to inoculate things with a truly nasty bacteria so I'm waiting to get another weight loss reading and cut into my Genoa. With the learning curve of new equipment I've reserved myself to the fact that I might not be happy with the end result. But I've got another 2 pork butts that have been in the deep freeze long enough to kill off any trichina and I had extra vacation to burn before the end of the year so I can make another attempt once I'm recovered. I don't know if I'm persistent or just plain stubborn :wink:
Pigs are magical creatures.... they turn vegetables into BACON!!
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby NCPaul » Mon Dec 07, 2015 11:43 pm

Spend some time sourcing some hard back fat and remember to mix lightly (what I needed to do with my last salami). There are plenty of chances to make decisions in salami making and I would like to think that I am getting better at them.
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby wheels » Mon Dec 07, 2015 11:54 pm

I'm no expert as you know, but to my mind it always seems like knitting fog!
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby johngaltsmotor » Tue Dec 22, 2015 12:51 pm

Well I'm a bit confused... Having lost 42% I cut into the Genoa... and found basically aged forcemeat. It was still moist and pliable. There were a few air pockets at the bottom and edges from my rapid humidity change early on (operator error). I'm guessing that the air pockets from shrinkage prevented the center from transferring its moisture to the surface to evaporate. But the fact that it was still fresh and not rotten must mean that my culture and sanitation were excellent. (thoughts?) I'm puzzled at how it could have lost so much moisture and still be so soft though. It wasn't case hardened very much (as you can see along the length and the cross-section in the background).

The Lucchese on the other hand had a lot more air pockets from shrinkage and wherever a pocket occurred it looks like the oxidation made things a bit funky (tan). Unfortunately my phone's camera is slow and I moved before it got the picture so most of them are too blurry to be helpful. So after having been hanging around for months to this point I'm just going to bin them and try again. I'm stubborn enough to keep trying, but not so stubborn as to get myself ill (or worse) eating something I should pitch :wink: Thankfully the hard salami was great so I'm not a complete failure HAHA.

Image
Pigs are magical creatures.... they turn vegetables into BACON!!
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby NCPaul » Wed Dec 23, 2015 11:50 am

That looks lean to me. The salami math to me - start at 80 / 20 lean / fat, lose about 40 % water, finish at 40 / 20 lean / fat. So the face of the salami should look like 1/3 fat. A lean mix may explain why you lost 40 % water so easily yet still have a soft salami. Are you adding back fat to your mix or just using pork shoulder? Ground once through a course plate? I think you are closer than you think to success.
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby johngaltsmotor » Sat Dec 26, 2015 1:29 am

I used all shoulder but they had a good 1/2" fat cap on which got mixed in. I'll have to check what the separated lean v fat weight was When mixing. When I get back to the office I'll send one of the other pictures that shows the lucchese (even if it is fuzzy).
So you're saying that because that looks lean I just needed to lose a lot more moisture? (Which would have been tough with the case hardening and air pockets)
Pigs are magical creatures.... they turn vegetables into BACON!!
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby johngaltsmotor » Sat Dec 26, 2015 10:39 pm

The 10lb each of pepperoni and finocchiona that I made today ended up at 21% fat just from the thick fat cap on the butts. Both recipes called for 3/16 grind which seems fine to me but until I have a complete success I'll do as I'm told ;-)
Pigs are magical creatures.... they turn vegetables into BACON!!
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby NCPaul » Sun Dec 27, 2015 2:27 am

I'm hopeful. :D The first few times for me were struggles with black mold and binned salamis, I think you are well passed that stage.
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby johngaltsmotor » Thu Jan 21, 2016 1:00 pm

Thanks for your help and encouragement Paul.
After each weighing lately I've been giving them a wipe down with a salt water dipped paper towel. The pepperoni is staying perfectly clean, but somehow the finocchiona is still getting a faint powdery coating (or it might just be the dried salt but then I'd expect it on both). The last weighing they were down about 20-22% at 17 days drying or so (80% 56F).
Pigs are magical creatures.... they turn vegetables into BACON!!
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby NCPaul » Thu Jan 21, 2016 3:26 pm

That seems like a good drying rate. It should start slowing down at this point in time. I've got one more still drying that should be finished this weekend or next. I believe I smeared the fat when making it so I am worried about it's quality.
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby johngaltsmotor » Fri Jan 29, 2016 12:57 pm

I may reconsider my idea to spritz with saltwater initially to minimize mold growth. I only did that a few times but yesterday I noticed that some of the protein lined casings are starting to peel away from the sausage inside. So either the vinegar the first few times or the saltwater later may have reduced the effectiveness of the protein lining.

Will they continue to dry right with that air gap between them and the casing? To avoid problems I'm thinking I might remove the casing and hang them in netting to finish drying now that they're stiff enough to not need the casing. (Also gives me an excuse to slice the tails off and see how they're actually progressing inside.)
Pigs are magical creatures.... they turn vegetables into BACON!!
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby NCPaul » Fri Jan 29, 2016 3:59 pm

Mine did fine, but they were pretty far along at that point. I'm slicing my last one this weekend.
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Re: I can't wait...

Postby NCPaul » Mon Feb 01, 2016 2:22 am

Here is the last salami, note the casing detachment

Image

The salami had an outer coating of fat that slowed its drying by several weeks

Image

Nonetheless the salami had a great flavor, and I think the bits of orange zest are visible

Image

The texture was ever so slightly grainy on the tongue, so not quite my best effort. When making sausage and you are faced with a decision, slow down. I think some sandwiches are in my future. :D

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Re: I can't wait...

Postby wheels » Mon Feb 01, 2016 11:37 am

Nice job. What do you put the graininess down to?

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Re: I can't wait...

Postby NCPaul » Mon Feb 01, 2016 11:58 am

I think I let it get too warm / overworked it when I made it. I read (after I made this) that salami should be packed tight when stuffing but that it isn't necessary to develop a good bind in the meat. Trying to do so will lead to various degrees of fat smearing. This one I believe was mostly successful because everything else was right.
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