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Pork Sausage too dry

 
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KJUN



Joined: 04 Jan 2006
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Wed Jan 04 06 2:13 am    Post subject: Pork Sausage too dry Reply with quote

Howdy:

I just got a nice smoker, so I'm starting to attempt to make linked smoke sausage. (Until now, I just made pan sausage or BBQ some stuffed sausage.) My first use of the smoker was not so great. I KNOW my main problem was that I had the temps too high. It took me a day to get the wood:air ratio correct...lol. I knew I should have did a "dry run," but I was too anxious.

BUT, my recipe is off too making it too extra dry. I'm making pure pork sausage from wild piggies, but the problem is that I clean almost ALL of the fat off of the pig and make the sausage out of EXTREMELY lean meat. I want as LITTLE fat as possible in my sausage, but I don't want it too dry to enjoy eating. Thin line, isn't it?

I don't want to use boar fat, so I plan to add beef tallow until it is just moist enough for me to eat. Anyone know of why this wouldn't be a good idea? ...or am I off on a completely wrong track all together? I just wantr to keep the fat in my diet as low as possible at this point.

I would LIKE to add beef tallow to the lean pork, but I have no idea what an absolute minimum needed for good sausage might be. Can anyone offer some practical suggestions????

Thanks in advance,
KJ
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jminion
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Joined: 06 Dec 2005
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Location: Federal Way, WA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 04 06 2:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

As you know the fact your using lean meat is the problem, beef tallow will effect flavor where pork fat will stay true to how the recipe was constructed.

If you are going to remain low in fat you can afford to smoke at pit temps over 180 to 190, the lower the better.
Jim
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mosler
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Joined: 15 Feb 2005
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Location: Mashpee, MA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 04 06 3:58 am    Post subject: Re: Pork Sausage too dry Reply with quote

I'm with jminion on the fat issue. Use pork fat in place of beef tallow. I have tried beef fat for some moose and caribou sausages and while they were alright, I'll stick with pork fat from here on out. And seeing as you are making a pork sausage to begin with, it seems like a no brainer.

As for fat to lean, my personal opinion is that the minimum ratio is about 10% by weight. There are also fat substitutes out there and/or additives (soy concentrate, phosphates etc.) you can include in the sausage mix to help retain the nautral moisture in the meat. Perhaps these could be used to get the fat contribution lower still and keep the sausage edible? I haven't used these so I can't comment.

And a final note about smoking temps. The temp range for smoking sausage and for making 'que is very different. The ideal temp range for smoking sausage (i.e. putting a raw pork product in the smoker and hoping to end up with something like kielbasa or andouille) is 120-140 F. There are recipes which call for a 2-3 day smoke with temps around 60-80 F but the typical 2-3 hour smoke is in the 120-140 F range. Once you've had it in the smoke long enough, the smoker temp is raised to around 170 F and the internal temp of the sausage is brought up to 152 F. So there are basically two stages: the smoking stage (120-140 F) and the cooking stage (170 F). If you were to throw the raw sausage into a smoker and let it sit with the temp at 200-220 F, the fat would melt completely and leach out of the sausage altogether. If the bottom of the sausage is greasy or there are grease spots below the sausage in the smoker, these are sure signs that the temp was too high.

I have read about folks throwing in sausage to cook with their 'que and have always assumed that these were already finished sausages. So the sausages were essentially being reheated and exposed to a bit of smoke along the way.
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allsmokenofire
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Joined: 26 Apr 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 04 06 6:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I make my own sausage, using a combination of 2/3 pork(butt and fat) and 1/3 lean beef. The total fat content is around 15-17%. I cook them fresh at 225ish and have not had a problem with them giving up all their fat. I use pork fat instead of beef because beef fat has an off color to it, and I don't use any fillers or additives.

Just my 2 cents...
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KJUN



Joined: 04 Jan 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 04 06 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jminion wrote:
If you are going to remain low in fat you can afford to smoke at pit temps over 180 to 190, the lower the better.
Jim


Thanks. My target was in the 175F range, so you are making my much more comfortable with that ideal. The actual temps weren't quite doubl;e that, though. Embarassed
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KJUN



Joined: 04 Jan 2006
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Wed Jan 04 06 9:31 am    Post subject: Re: Pork Sausage too dry Reply with quote

mosler wrote:
And seeing as you are making a pork sausage to begin with, it seems like a no brainer.


I don't mind the pork fat, but the fat from these ~350lb boars is just too rank for me to use. To my taste, it'll just ruin them. I'm looking for other options down. Searching is more accurate, I guess....lol.

mosler wrote:
As for fat to lean, my personal opinion is that the minimum ratio is about 10% by weight. There are also fat substitutes out there and/or additives (soy concentrate, phosphates etc.) you can include in the sausage mix to help retain the nautral moisture in the meat.


Thanks of the 10% rule of thumb! I've never heard of the substitutes, but I might look into it if the 10% is too dry for our tastes!

mosler wrote:
And a final note about smoking temps. The temp range for smoking sausage and for making 'que is very different. The ideal temp range for smoking sausage (i.e. putting a raw pork product in the smoker and hoping to end up with something like kielbasa or andouille) is 120-140 F. There are recipes which call for a 2-3 day smoke with temps around 60-80 F but the typical 2-3 hour smoke is in the 120-140 F range.


Awesome. I was also wondering how LONG to smoke it. Just as an FYI, my original goal was ~170, so I'll probably cool that down a little bit. The temps, I'm ashamed to admit, were in fact not quite twice my goal in my first attempt. I got that mostly fixed now, though. Embarassed

mosler wrote:
So there are basically two stages: the smoking stage (120-140 F) and the cooking stage (170 F). If you were to throw the raw sausage into a smoker and let it sit with the temp at 200-220 F, the fat would melt completely and leach out of the sausage altogether. If the bottom of the sausage is greasy or there are grease spots below the sausage in the smoker, these are sure signs that the temp was too high.


Awesome information! Thank you, thank you!
KJ
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mosler
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Location: Mashpee, MA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 04 06 11:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

allsmokenofire wrote:
I make my own sausage, using a combination of 2/3 pork(butt and fat) and 1/3 lean beef. The total fat content is around 15-17%. I cook them fresh at 225ish and have not had a problem with them giving up all their fat. I use pork fat instead of beef because beef fat has an off color to it, and I don't use any fillers or additives.

Just my 2 cents...

Good to know, I wouldn't have guessed you could this. I've had fat loss issues at temps lower than that.

How long are the suasages at that temp? And what internal temp to you end up with/shoot for?
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allsmokenofire
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05 06 12:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

They take about 2.5 hrs, internal temp of 155-160.

Here's a pic:

edited the pic size so you could see it better...
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mosler
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 05 06 1:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

allsmokenofire wrote:
Here's a pic:

Looking Good! I hope the judges liked it Smile
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hvac81
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Joined: 12 Sep 2005
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 19 06 9:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mike --ya had to go and do it.
Thanks Crying or Very sad Now Im drooling
Nice presentation of your product Smile
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Johnnyo



Joined: 26 Dec 2006
Posts: 17
Location: Prince Albert Sask. summers, Alamo Tx., winters

PostPosted: Tue Dec 26 06 10:52 pm    Post subject: casings Reply with quote

Mike what type & size of casings did you use?? Looks delicious.. Wink
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allsmokenofire
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Joined: 26 Apr 2005
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 27 06 12:38 pm    Post subject: Re: casings Reply with quote

Johnnyo wrote:
Mike what type & size of casings did you use?? Looks delicious.. Wink


That's a 32-35mm natural hog casing. Thanks!
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David
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Joined: 24 Mar 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 28 06 10:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Beef fat is not recommended. Fat is not only used for flavor but also as a binder to keep the lean muscles together during the cooking process. the fatter you make it the slower you should be able to cook it. Beef suet cooks out faster than pork fat and uselly isn't recommeded for a pork based sausage.
Hey Mike the box looks GREAT.
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allsmokenofire
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Joined: 26 Apr 2005
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 28 06 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks David, that sausage was from last years Art of BBQ in Tulsa. I've got a new recipe I'm using now. Wink
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Mike
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auto
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Joined: 23 Feb 2006
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 02 07 1:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

for duck sausage, I try and keep the temps right at 175. I also used a 50/50 mixture of pork butt and duck breast
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BBQonICE
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Joined: 12 Nov 2007
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Location: Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan

PostPosted: Mon Nov 12 07 11:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

another one here for pork fat. We use a 70/30 ground pork mix....thats 30% fat and mix that off with equal part deer, moose, elk, beef....

The pork fat is what carries your flavour, spices, etc. When we cook it off in a broiler, etc. the fat renders out a bit so that might help you. The longer you cook it before eating at the table the more the fat will come out of it.

I personally love it straight outta the smoke house...dripping with taste.
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