When you stroll past the stores in a mall just before the holidays, perhaps you`ve often stopped at the place that sells smoked sausages. You know the one... it`s got a "hardwood" in its name and they offer several types of gift baskets for the holidays. Lots of folks like their "smoked beef stick". Why not make your own? It is a great gift idea for your friends or relatives during the holidays. Everyone likes a summer sausage, a little cheese, some home preserves, and some crackers in a basket. When I make this sausage, I like to use the 76 m.m. mahogany-colored casings (Sausagemaker #26200) filled and placed inside a dark brown plastic diamond-pattern presentation netting (Sausagemaker #13513). Twist the netting and clamp it off using a hog-ring. Tie a fancy Christmas bow around the hog ring and you`ve got a great-looking and great-tasting gift that anyone would like to have. They are best made about 2 weeks before Christmas and kept refrigerated. Don`t fudge on the ingredients or the procedure. Follow the directions carefully and you`ll have a sausage that will help build your reputation as a craftsman.
Ho, Ho, Ho! Ho, Ho, Ho! Just in time for Christmas! ...
Saddle Bum`s Smoky Beef Stick
(5 lb. Semi-Dry Cured Summer Sausage Recipe)... with F-LC Culture
4-1/2 lbs. (2050.0 g.) trimmed beef chuck
1/2 lb. (230.0 g.) pork back fat
1/2 tspn. (1.2 g.) F-LC culture
1 tspn. (6.0 g.) Cure #1
2 Tblspns. (44.0 g.) salt
1 cup (236.5 g.) icewater
3/4 cup (50.0 g.) non-fat powdered milk
4 Tblspns. (12.0 g.) powdered dextrose
1-1/2 Tblspns. (35.0 g.) corn syrup solids
1-1/2 Tblspns. (15.0 ml.) liquid smoke
2-1/2 tspns. (7.5 g.) soy protein concentrate
1 Tblspn. (6.5 g.) paprika
1-3/4 tspn. (5.0 g.) garlic powder
1-3/4 tspn. (4.5 g.) white pepper
2 tspn. (1.5 g.) crushed mustard seed
1/2 tspn. (1.0 g.) celery seed
1/2 tspn. (1.0 g.) ground coriander
1/4 tspn. (0.7 g.) ground nutmeg
-------- ----------- 76 mm. (3") collagen casings
(if you must...
see instructions below*)
3/4 tspn. (3.5 g.) of ascorbic acid
2-1/2 tspns. (10.0 g.) phosphate
Partially freeze the beef and pork fat. Prepare the F-LC culture with distilled water according to the directions on the package. Allow a "lag phase" for the bacteria to wake up while you trim any excess fat from the beef and discard it. Cube the beef (1" dice) and frozen pork fat in preparation for grinding. Grind the meat and the fat through a 1/4" plate. Place them into the freezer twenty minutes, then grind them again using a 3/16"plate. Mix the cure, salt, (and phosphate if used) together with a cup of icewater and mix it with the meat until it starts to develop a sticky meat paste. Add the remaining dry ingredients and the liquid smoke and continue mixing for 30 seconds more. Finally, add the F-LC culture and mix 30 seconds more. When the mixture shows soft peaks, stuff it into 76 mm. fibrous casings and hang them to dry half an hour.
Ferment the sausage at 86° F. 24 hours in 90% humidity dropping to 85% in one day. Preheat the smoker to 110°F. and introduce hickory smoke at least four hours in 70% humidity. Gradually, only a few degrees every twenty minutes, raise the temperature of the smoker until the internal meat temperature reaches 150°F. It is most important that this temperature is not surpassed. Remove the sausages and immediately rinse them in cold water until the meat temperature drops below 90°F. Dry the sausage three days at 60°F. in 70% humidity. Store them at 50-55°F in 75% humidity.
Why use Bactoferm™ F-LC? Because it is foolproof. It`s recommended for the production of all types of fermented sausages, including this semi-dry cured product. It contains lactobacillus curvatus and pediococcus acidilactici for complete acidification as well as developing pediocin and bavaricin - both known for keeping listeria monocytogenes bacteria at safe levels. Staphylococcus xylosus in the culture, is responsible for strong color and flavor development. Depending on fermentation temperature, acidification may be traditional, fast, or extra fast. A 25-gram packet of Bactoferm™ F-LC will treat 220 pounds (100 kilo) of meat.
* I developed this recipe from a 100-pound commercial formula that is very popular in the United States. Don`t ask me how I stole.... errr... uhhh...obtained
it. You know the company. Please note that the commercial formula originally contained ascorbic acid and phosphate. The amount for this 5 pound sausage recipe works out to be 3/4 tspn. (3.5 g.) of ascorbic acid and 2-1/2 tspns. (10.0 g.) phosphate (sold as "special meat binder"). I chose to omit these two additives in my own sausage, although you certainly may prefer to add them. Unquestionably, the use of phosphate will force the meat to hold more water and the ascorbic acid will give the meat a deeper red color although the staphylococcus xylosus
in the Bactoferm will ensure the color and flavor.
Did you know that the term "summer sausage" originated in the old countries where peasants and field workers would make the sausage during the winter to be consumed during the summer months while working. Hope you enjoy the recipe.