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Question about Pink Curing Salt in making Homemade Sausage

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    Question about Pink Curing Salt in making Homemade Sausage

    Hi all!

    Tackling my first homemade sausage this weekend. I've looked at a ton of different recipes and Meathead's approach and think I have the basics down. My only question is using curing salt. If I plan to follow Meathead's approach and smoke them between 200 and 225, do I need to use pink curing salt? I'm seeing a ton of recipes that utilize it, but can't tell if it's because of cold smoking or if it's necessary. I know some recipes require it, but I am going for basic pork sausages to start off. Any feedback or thoughts is appreciated.

    #2
    I use it for food safety reasons. I make larger quantities of sausage and I vacuum seal and freeze it after smoking. When grinding meat, remember that any bacteria on the meat surface gets mixed throughout the grind. I often let the seasonings blend with the meat overnight in the fridge. The time the meat is out being ground and mixed with the seasonings and the time it takes to stuff into casings, plus the time it takes to reach safe temperatures on the smoker all can allow the meat/spice blend to warm into dangerous territory. Pink salt is extra insurance that things don't go wrong.

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    #3
    Oh great! I’ve only used that for bacon and corned beef. I for some reason thought the ratio would be different for ground meat. Not sure why. Thank you!

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    • 58limited
      58limited commented
      Editing a comment
      That was my thought at first too since I originally used it for pastrami which uses a lot of liquid for a wet cure. Sausage has very little liquid, just enough to act as a binder - usually 1/3 - 1/2 cup per 5 lbs. I realized that the calculator works for both - just enter the weight of the meat and the volume of liquid, no matter how much or how little, as you would for curing bacon or corned beef to determine the amount of pink salt.

    • 58limited
      58limited commented
      Editing a comment
      I double checked this by comparing sausage recipes I found here and on the web - all call for roughly 1.0-1.1 tsp curing salt per 5lbs.

    #4
    Are you making it and then immediately smoking it? Curing it for days? You don't use the PP #1 for some kinds of sausage, you want PP #2 which acts differently... but only if you're curing for days/weeks.

    Short version - you need to do different things base on the recipe you're using, you can't just use the technique of one recipe everywhere.

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    • Baltimorelger
      Baltimorelger commented
      Editing a comment
      I was going to let it sit overnight in the fridge to let flavors meld and smoke tomorrow. I think cure 1 should work with the recipe I’m going to do (it calls for it).

    • rickgregory
      rickgregory commented
      Editing a comment
      Hmm. Yo could use it but I don't see the point in using a curing salt for food safety if it's over night in the fridge. Yes, when you grind, bacteria get mixed in, but... we all eat burgers that are ground and which sit longer than overnight from time they're ground.

      HOWEVAH... smoking *is* slower and is anaerobic so I suppose there's some slight risk and why not be safe?

      BTW Ruhlman's "Charcuterie" is an excellent book on this topic - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/...Charcuterie?ac

    #5
    Best to let it sit overnight if using the curing salt. The curing salt gives a nice distinct flavor.



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      #6
      Alright! I’ve cubed, grinded (2x), seasoned, and now it’s resting in the fridge overnight. Tomorrow it’s stuffing time!
      Attached Files

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      • SheilaAnn
        SheilaAnn commented
        Editing a comment
        Looking forward to the final product!

      #7
      Stuffed and they’ll go on the smoker tonight!
      Attached Files

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        #8
        Looks good. What kind are you making?

        Comment


        • Baltimorelger
          Baltimorelger commented
          Editing a comment
          I took mnavarre Aleppo pepper sausage recipe but did a combo of beef and pork. I’m going to smoke them this evening. One question I have, can I get away with cooking to IT or 150 or should I shoot to 160. I plan to dunk them in cold water after and then let them dry before freezing most (though I’m sure I’ll keep 1 or 2 to sample).

        • mnavarre
          mnavarre commented
          Editing a comment
          Nice! I'm interested to see how they turn out with the beef.

        #9
        I cook to 155 myself. When I want to eat one I pop it on the grill to get a good snap in the skin.

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        • Backroadmeats
          Backroadmeats commented
          Editing a comment
          Per my department of agriculture meat inspector they have to be brought to 160 degrees. I know alot but f people may not bring them that high and I don't have a problem with that either.. just relaying my inspectors position on it.

        #10
        Thanks! Since it’s my first time I’ll prob do 160, and then cool them fast and let them dry/plump up.

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        • Backroadmeats
          Backroadmeats commented
          Editing a comment
          Yup get them in a nice cold water bath tightens up the casing and stops the cooking. Good luck!!

        #11
        Looking forward to seeing how this turns out. This is one thing that I have yet to attempt.

        Comment


        • Baltimorelger
          Baltimorelger commented
          Editing a comment
          It felt really intimidating before attempting, but was really fun. Looking forward to seeing how they turn out.

        • Mr. Bones
          Mr. Bones commented
          Editing a comment
          Also followin along with rapt attention; haven't made / stuffed my own into casins, jus done bulk...see how yer servin as an inspiration, an motivator!?

          Bravo, Sir!

        #12
        Nice job. Those are looking good.

        Comment


          #13
          Shocked them and now they are drying out! I’m really excited to dive into these later tonight.
          Attached Files

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          • scottdware
            scottdware commented
            Editing a comment
            Wow those look amazing! Great work! Sausages aren't something I've done yet, and have been wanting to. Definitely plan to try it this summer!

          • rzawatsky
            rzawatsky commented
            Editing a comment
            They Look GREAT !!!!!! I'm making 10lbs. of Polish kielbasa this weekend and was wondering how much curing salt to use. I'm going with 2 tsps, for 10lbs., and I'll be smoking the next day after an overnite refrigeration.

          #14
          They sure took some nice color!! Look pretty... But how do they taste?? Nice job!!

          Comment


            #15
            Results are in. Just vacuum sealed 12 of them and reserved two for dinner. Just pulled them off the smoker to bring them back up. They were incredible! Thank you all for all your advice!

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