New Smoker

Discussion in 'Sausage' started by justsmokeit, Feb 7, 2013.

  1. I didn't get a lot of response on the Roll Call, so I thought I would repost over here...

    I have been making barbeque or cooking over charcoal for years. Mostly cooking products you buy. Last couple of years I have been experimenting with making sausage and smoking it. I was thinking of building a smoker, or buying an offset box smoker that I could also use for barbeque. My hunting buddy made a smoke house for cold smoke last year. We use that for smoke, then poach or bake/barbeque for cooking. We want to do hot smoke this year.

    My sausage has been well received, so I would like to share the process I have been using and see if I am doing something stupid. Every time I tell someone my process or read a book, it seems like I am doing some things differently, not necessarily wrong though. I am curious what some of you experts think about the little differences and if they are important for the final product.

    I am just going to describe the basics. If you have questions, ask. Again, I am very new at this and would appreciate any feedback. Also indicate if you have a preference for doing things some way, or if it is a really critical step for quality of safety.

    How I make my sausage:

    I do what I call a 40/40/20 mix. 40 deer, 40 pork butt, and 20 fat. If I can’t find fat, I just add more pork butt. Cube everything up and put it in the fridge to get nice and cold. Then I dump everything into a big cooler. (It’s probably important to note that by everything, I mean everything. I hear a lot of people say you should grind separately and hand mix your spices after the grind. I would like to hear your thoughts on this since I do it all at the same time.) Then I add spices and cure. Mix, a lot. Back into the fridge. Take out 25lbs at a time, course grind, back into the fridge. Now, I do hand mix my cheese and Jalapeño at this point if added. Don’t want them getting mashed up in the grinder. Keep it in the fridge for about four hours. Take out, stuff into natural casings using a manual stuffer. I tried this with the grinder, but it just doesn’t seem like you have much control. It takes longer, and it seems like the fat always gets mushy. Hang sausages until the casing is dry. Maybe an hour. Put in the smoker. Smoke at about 110 degrees. We have a puck feeder on the smoke house. I think it drops one about every 30 minutes. It doesn’t seem like a lot of smoke, but after about six hours, the sausages start to look red and the cheese and jalapeño can de clearly seen through the casings now. They look pretty. That’s when I take them out. Cold water shower, dry, and vacuum pack. I always write on the bag that they are raw pork and venison, and provide cooking instructions for poaching or baking to 160 degrees internal. Personally, I poach it, then put in the barbeque to get the color back, not necessarily for cooking.

    What’s next:

    This year, I want to hot smoke and have a fully cooked ready to eat product for give a ways. I want to think about doing some smaller batch “proper” cold smoke ready to eat product.

    I want to build my own smoker.

    This is a great forum and I have 1000 ideas already.

    Thanks for any tips or feedback.
  2. Welcome! Not sure why you didn't get a response in Roll Call? I mix my cure & spices after I grind because it is easier for me to get good, even coverage that way. There is actually a recent thread on that very subject here...    Take a good look around the forums - I think you'll like it here  [​IMG]
  3. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I asked "justsmokeit" to come over here and introduce himself.  Gave the link too.  Most times in Roll Call it's the Hi..Howdy Doo...

    Sorry You didn't get more of a response!

  4. I figured I would have to find the right group of people. This looks like it. I am making my sausage this weekend. I will post some process pics when finished.
  5. Looking forward to it! I am getting ready to make some more sausage in the next day or so myself  [​IMG]   If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask - lots of folks here willing to help out  [​IMG]
  6. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I love to drool over all the sausages yall do here!  I am in and will be waiting to see the s-view!  [​IMG]
  7. boykjo

    boykjo SAUSAGE MAKER Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Let me do this again........[​IMG] I spent 15 minutes answering your questions... hit submit and the site was down for updates.... so I lost everything..Poopers.......
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2013
  8. weisswurst

    weisswurst Smoke Blower

    I think you have a good handle on what you are doing. You already know the difference between cold smoking and hot smoke cooking.Good!!  If i can offer anything it would be to constuct your smoker so that when you want to actually smoke a product ( cold smoke ) you can introduce the smoke that is generated out of the heat chamber and is introduced as a cool smoke without a flame under or near your product. Translation : A smoker with a hole on a side that you can pipe in cool  smoke.Example .. a hot plate or smoke box with a pipe thaHappy SMt is a few inches long  to carry the smoke but not much heat into the smoker. After the desired smoke is reached you can close that off and bring your heat up to the temperature that will give you 160 degrees internal temp.And if you want to smoke cook you can simultaneously introduce heat and smoke .Happy SM. Weisswurst
  9. z
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2013
  10. Thanks for all the replies and advice. Sorry it took so long for me to reply, but I have been busy smoking sausauge! I went ahead and did the hot smoke. Added a burner and just slowly bumped it up until about 155 internal. Middle links were a little warmer. Took about five hours, but I was trying to go slow. Here are some pics:

    First, gather the materials. Venison and pork. Maybe a hog if you can find one.

    Don't forget refreshments for your friends.

    Grind it up.

    Stuff it.

    Hang it.

    Smoke it. I bought one of those burners from Northern mentioned on this forum. Frankly, its a piece of junk. It did make heat at the rate I wanted and is adjustable. 


    Ready to eat suasauge, vacume packed and in my freezer.
  11. driedstick

    driedstick Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Looks great, and from the pics of that beer box you started early, or some one was taking some from you ....... dirty rascules [​IMG]    

  12. z
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2013
  13. Yep, that was it. Besides the threads being to short on the fittings, cracks in the brass tubing, burner wholes filled with paint, burner rest being lopsided, and a few other insignificant defects, it worked great!

    I would not recommend it to anyone unless you came across it at a yard sale and it fit your budget. Shop around for something you can try or easily check for quality.
  14. Looks great!

    I've hot smoked kielbasa until it reached an 155 -160 IT, but then even reheating it seemed to dry it out. Now I cold smoke my kielbasa, mark the packages as "RAW PRODUCT MUST BE COOKED PRIOR TO EATING", but these I keep here at home for us. If I'm giving it away, I hot smoke it til done.
  15. pgsmoker64

    pgsmoker64 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Wow!  Awesome job!

    Where can I get some?  LOL

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