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[USA] Smoked Cheddar Kielbasa

Posted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 04:51
by JerBear
Here's the sausage I made today:

Smoked Cheddar Kielbasa

10 lbs pork shoulder
1 lbs fat back
2 cups Fat Tire Belgium Ale
5 Tbl kosher Salt
1 Tbl Sugar
2 Tbl Black Pepper
2 Tbl Garlic
1 tsp Marjoram
1 tsp ground Allspice
2 cups nonfat milk powder
12 g meat binder / phosphate (optional)
2 tsp instacure No 1
1 tsp smoked spanish paprika
1 lb hi-temp cheddar (from Butcher-Packer)

I ground all the shoulder through the large blade of my grinder and then about half the shoulder was reground with the fatback and the garlic through the fine die.

I held the sausages overnight under refrigeration then brought them to temp for one hour before cold smoking with medium smoke with applewood for 4 hrs. The sausages were then poached to 150 degrees F, iced then bloomed for 90 min.

The next time I make it I think I'll add at least 50% more marjoram, more pepper and less cheese. The rest is as they say, history.

This sausage is based off the recipe found here and the original is nothing short of friggin awesome!: Grandpa Jumbo's Smoked Polish


Posted: Tue Jan 10, 2012 00:24
by Gringo Loco
They look mighty tasty!! Good work! :grin:
I will have to make a batch.

Posted: Tue Jan 10, 2012 00:28
by Chuckwagon
Hey Jer,
I love that old knife... hand forged from an old file... tang pressed into a dowel handle. Keeps an edge too eh?

Posted: Tue Jan 10, 2012 01:15
by Keymaster
Very Nice, I like cheese in my sausage. May have to try this one, Thanks.

Posted: Tue Jan 10, 2012 02:55
by Bubba
Looking good JerBear!

You do good work on stuffing a sausage. And with the cheese it looks very appetizing.

Posted: Tue Jan 10, 2012 03:49
by JerBear
thanks for all the great compliments guys. They've been well received by friends and family so far. Anyone have some advice on how to get some better color on 'em for next time?
Chuckwagon wrote:I love that old knife... hand forged from an old file... tang pressed into a dowel handle. Keeps an edge too eh?
Hand forged but actually it's a Kikuichi petty. I do have an old knife my grandpaade from a file though. It's got a deer antler handle and a sheath made from an old boot ( no joke ). It's way too precious to cook with!

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 05:15
by Baconologist
JerBear wrote:Anyone have some advice on how to get some better color on 'em for next time?
Extend the cold smoking time or smoke at a higher temperature.
In general, the best color is achieved at about 160 degrees.


Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 06:48
by JerBear
That means I'm gonna have to plumb in an internal burner for heat, until then I'll work on extending the time. I'm just concerned about over-smoking the product.

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 16:36
by NorCal Kid
Nice job, jerBear. That cheesy kielbasa looks tasty! :grin:

I tend to do shorter, heavy smokes (90 minutes-2 hours), & finish as you did, with a water bath. To get a darker, richer color, I try to follow these guidelines:

- Allow plenty of time for the sausage to thoroughly DRY; either by hanging at room temp for a couple of hours in front of a fan, or in a preheated smoker (no smoke) @110-120° for an hour or so.

- Apply heavy smoke next, 2-4 hours, depending on how large the diameter of the sausage is (4" diameter bolognas I give additional time).

- Use Hickory. I will use 100% hickory for some batches, but I also prefer to mix it with apple, pecan, & other woods. The hickory, even if its only a small percentage (30% hickory, 70% apple or cherry, for example), always adds a nice reddish-mahogany hue.

- Allow plenty of hang & bloom time after the hot bath & ice-cooling.

Following these simple steps has seemed to allow me to get a nice, dark color on most of my smoked sausages. This is all information you probably already know, but I just wanted to share how I always approach things to get the color I want.


Kielbasa, 100% hickory (2 hours):

Kielbasa, hickory & applewood blend (2 hours):

Chorizo; hickory & cherry blend (4-hour smoke):

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 16:56
by redzed
Great looking kielbasa. Sure would have liked to have a sample.

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 20:51
by JerBear

I did an hour dry time with one of those Tornado fans and they were pretty dry but I'll go for another hour for insurance.

My smoke was medium-ish. My first run in the smoker was some cheese to test things out and it was nasty and waaaay over-smoked so I brough things down a notch on this run and I believe I went for three hours (can't remember but it's proably documented on an earlier posting)

I knew that hickory added nice color but I hadn't thought about doing a blend and really like that idea. This last batch was 100% applewood but I'll definately add some hickory to the mix on the next run.

I did a two hour bloom after cooking which helped.

I mentioned to Chuckwagon that I'm in the process of moving from my apt into a house and will be moving my smoker from my parent's house to my new house so I hope to be doing a lot more smoking as access to my equipment will be significantly better.

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 21:49
by ssorllih
The few times I have smoked cheese I deemed the result better on the day after smoking. I believe that the chemicals in the smoke migrate into the cheese or the meat over time. I wonder if the dwell time of the smoke makes a difference? My Charbroil grill is full of holes that let the smoke out as quickly as it arrives.
I have a couple of pieces that are ready to smoke and I think that I shall use some mulberry. I had a limb break out of my appletree and I will cut that up and save it.

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 21:55
by JerBear
The cheese was better the next day but still nasty. I also took the advice of someone who didn't know what they were talking about so there were likely other issues involved. I might try again in the future. That said, a friend of mine smokes cheese often and he has great success and we've been trading. That might be a better option, why re-invent the wheel as it were?

Posted: Thu Apr 26, 2012 23:32
by Baconologist
Freshly smoked cheese is almost always harsh.
It's best to let it mellow for a week of two, preferably vacuum packed and refrigerated, of course.


Posted: Wed May 09, 2012 19:33
I agree with Baconologist, when i smoke cheese, i use very light smoke for about an hour, then rinse it and dry, and vacuum pack it and let it sit in the fridge for about a week or so, ot really mellows alot after a week and also distributes the smoke through out the cheese, when it first comes off the smoker it is very harsh,Tim