It Worked :)

Discussion in 'Sausage' started by mojo, Feb 13, 2010.

  1. mojo

    mojo Newbie

    Just wanted to update you on my latest smoke project.

    I ground up a 10 lb pork roast ( Boston Butt ) and made two types of sausage. Cajun and Italian. A buddy of mine who is an executive chef in Canada gave me a few pointers on mixing my own spices so I could control the sodium content versus using over the counter pre-mixed spices which all seem to be very heavy in sodium.

    I stuffed the sausages using hog casings and then smoked them using applewood in my MES. I took the advice of several members here and threw out my timer and cooked using a tempo probe instead. I got a MUCH better product this time and it wasn't dried out like my first attempt ( abortion ) at smoking sausage. I turned that batch into jerky by smoking according to a timer.

    The Cajun sausage turned out with a great spice mix but the Italian turned out blahhh. I am wondering if you have to over spice in order to get a good spice flavor after smoking. Does smoking some how drop the effects of the spice ?

    Also, one other question. Do any of you add extra fat during the grinding mixing in order to get a fattier sausage ? My wife is saying they are to lean and they need more fat.

    What is all of your opinions on the fat content and spice flavor loss ?

    Thanks everyone for setting me straight on smoking my sausages using the temp method instead of the timer method. :)

  2. newflame

    newflame Meat Mopper

    qview or it didn't happen. :)
  3. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    If doing pork sausage I use butts and as a general rule you can figure thats about 30% fat if I remember correctly. That should give you a good fat content. As for the amount of spice did you do a fry test before stuffing? If you do a fry test you can adjust the spices to your liking then if after smoking it tastes different you can figure out whether you need to add even more spice to offset the smoke flavor. Keep your own detailed log of what you did and the amounts and before long you'll have sausage tailored to your exact tastes. We will expect Qview next time [​IMG]
  4. que-ball

    que-ball Smoking Fanatic

    If you smoked your sausage at too high of a smoker temperature, you may have rendered some of the fat out of the sausage. Boston butts should have provided enough fat for good sausage, assuming you didn't discard the fat cap. Without qview it's hard to help you.[​IMG]
  5. john3198

    john3198 Smoking Fanatic

    There are texts out there, like Bruce Aidel's, that usually call for addition of fatback to butt, usually 3 lbs BB to 1/2-1 lbs fatback. That increases the fat content. When I make sausage if I have fatback, I will add some. I often don't (hard to come by here) so use butt if that is all I have however, make sure you have the fat cap on it.

    I usuually end up over spicing my sausage from the reciepe just because that is the way I like it. Like otheres have said, check it out with a fry test. Don't know about the effect of smoke, as I haven't smoked mine, just stuffed, grill or saute.
  6. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member


    I added extra fennel seed, caraway seed and crushed red pepper to my Italian Sausage. Some guys toast their fennel and caraway seed, but I run mine thru a coffee grinder for a few seconds.

    We always test fry to make sure seasonings are correct.

  7. danmcg

    danmcg Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    A pork butt with some cap still on is just about right for fat content. Sometimes people get a somewhat crumbly sausage and think they need more fat, But what it really needed was to be mixed longer to develop the myocin.
  8. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    After grinding, did you let it rest? Spices take some time to activate with the moisture in the meat, and/or if you added icewater. Smoking and cooking might decrease flavor a bit or the smoke flavor 'hide' the flavor of other ingredients (overpower). You need to let sausage casings dry before smoking, and that is usually the necessary rest time; I lay mine out in my buckets and refrigerate for an hour or so.
    Everyone else is right, however; do a fry test before stuffing (you wanna anyways, dontcha?!) then you can adjust as necessary. Sometimes a tad of MSG is needed to explode the flavors also.
    We love to drool, show off your fantastic handiwork and let us be envious! (No one's usually on when they're making their own sausages, so showing us your's just makes us wanna do more!). You show me your's, I'll show you mine!
  9. werdwolf

    werdwolf Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    It sounds like your wife wants a little more moisture, that the sausage is dry.

    More fat works. Make sure to slowly raise those smoker temps so you don't render the fat as mentioned above.

    Other ways to moisten include adding the little soy protein pieces(i can't think of what they are called of the top of my head). I get mine at the health food store when I do use them.

    use real vegetable instead of powders for the spices, garlic, onion, herbs.

    hope this helps.
  10. bustintires

    bustintires Smoke Blower

    isnt tofu soy protien
  11. bustintires

    bustintires Smoke Blower

    tofu, the evil opposite of meat
  12. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If I were you I would listen to theses guys here they are giving you some really good advise so listen maybe take notes an all. I know cause I listene but I did't take notes but I do now for sure.
  13. My first batch was made with a 10lb pork butt. The recipe called for 3 lbs (I weighed carefully on a decent scale), and this is where I think the problem occurred.

    10 lbs of pork cube is rather large, and I had it in gallon ziplocs for the freezer. It takes 2 of them, almost 3. So, as I'm cubing this up, trying to figure out how to cut it (I had no idea of the shape of the bone), I'm not thinking about it. And I think the fat wasn't distributed well. Lots of lean went in one bag, lots of fat in the other. Guess which I used for the first batch?

    Probably not a problem for the rest of you, you're doing recipes with larger amounts.

    As for the suggestion to use fresh vegetables and herbs... this is a little tough. We can all get fresh onions or garlic, but here in Nashville it's mostly just Kroger or Food Lion, and fresh herbs are tough to come by. Kroger has these little plastic box of "organic herbs", but half the time they're wilted, or the rack's empty of them. And it's far from a full spread, even for just those that you might use in sausage. Oregano, basil... I think they have mint and lemongrass. Short of growing your own, I just don't know how you'd do this (at least outside of major cities... Gwinnett International Farmers Market in Atlanta is awesome, and I expect similar in NYC or California cities). Mind you, I'm not critical of the suggestion... it's a great idea, but it's another hoop to jump through for many of us, I'd think.

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