Question's & more following probably, on using cure #1 in sausage.

Discussion in 'Sausage' started by fpmich, Oct 18, 2016.

  1. fpmich

    fpmich Smoking Fanatic

    1.  If I cut meat to fit throat of grinder, and cure it first.  (as in Pop's Brine, or a dry brine, for time appropriate to size of meat pieces) 

    Would it be okay to then grind and add spices as I grind, then just mix a bit more, and leave in fridge to meld overnight before stuffing.

    2.  Does cure #1 change taste if cooked fresh?   Especially if it is cooked as fresh?  I think I already know that answer, but how much of a difference?

    3.  Does adding cure to sausage keep reddish, even if cooked fresh. (after curing times of course)

    I've made fresh brats in the past, but that was before I got into smoking.  They were very good, even without the smoked flavor.

    Lately, I have been smoking my fresh brats in smoker @  225* -250* until IT of 160*-162* and putting them on hot grill in sfb, and rolling them across until marks developed, and IT is around 168*-170*.   They come out great!

    But... winter is coming on and I'm a wimp.  I don't do anything outside in winter unless I'm forced to.  LOL
  2. fpmich

    fpmich Smoking Fanatic

    No takers or hints?
  3. danmcg

    danmcg Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I'm not sure what you mean by cooked fresh.
    I often cube, add the cure and seasoning then grind. I works really well.

    As far as cure #1 changing the flavor, It will give you the flavor of ham instead of pork and the cure will always cause the meat to redden and stay that way.

    I hope this answers your questions.

    One last thing, Ideally you want to keep your smoker below 170°-175° but if your temps work for you, who am I to say .
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2016
  4. nepas

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

    Here is some cure #1 Info.

    CURES - Cures are used in sausage products for color and flavor development as well as retarding the development of bacteria in the low temperature environment of smoked meats.

    Salt and sugar both cure meat by osmosis. In addition to drawing the water from the food, they dehydrate and kill the bacteria that make food spoil. In general, though, use of the word "cure" refers to processing the meat with either sodium nitrite or sodium nitrate.

    The primary and most important reason to use cures is to prevent BOTULISM POISONING (Food poisoning). It is very important that any kind of meat or sausage that will be cooked and smoked at low temperature be cured. To trigger botulism poisoning, the requirements are quite simple - lack of oxygen, the presence of moisture, and temperatures in range of 40-140° F. When smoking meats, the heat and smoke eliminates the oxygen. The meats have moisture and are traditionally smoked and cooked in the low ranges of 90 to 185° F. As you can see, these are ideal conditions for food poisoning if you don't use cures. There are two types of commercially used cures.

    Prague Powder #1

    Also called Insta-Cure and Modern Cure. Cures are used to prevent meats from spoiling when being cooked or smoked at low temperatures (under 200 degrees F). This cure is 1 part sodium nitrite (6.25%) and 16 parts salt (93.75%) and are combined and crystallized to assure even distribution. As the meat temperate rises during processing, the sodium nitrite changes to nitric oxide and starts to ‘gas out’ at about 130 degrees F. After the smoking /cooking process is complete only about 10-20% of the original nitrite remains. As the product is stored and later reheated for consumption, the decline of nitrite continues. 4 ounces of Prague powder #1 is required to cure 100 lbs of meat. A more typical measurement for home use is 1 level tsp per 5 lbs of meat. Mix with cold water, then mix into meat like you would mix seasonings into meat.
  5. fpmich

    fpmich Smoking Fanatic

    I should've said cooked 'AS' a fresh sausage.  In other words cooked after curing time is done, without smoking.

    So you are saying it will still have that hammy flavor, (that's not all bad, is it?) even if I cook it in oven or skillet with saurerkraut, or something?

    medium  to med high heat to it of 165*.  Without smoking low and slow for awhile.
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2016
  6. danmcg

    danmcg Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    They'll still have that cured flavor, just not the extra layer of flavor that smoke adds.
  7. fpmich

    fpmich Smoking Fanatic

    Maybe I should just use beet juice or food coloring for the fresh (not cured sausage) for those who don't care for smoked meat much.

    I've used paprika before, but to get the color I wanted, it changed the taste, and I didn't care for it.
  8. nepas

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

    Use some Annatto powder for a red tint.
  9. fpmich

    fpmich Smoking Fanatic

    Thanks nepas and DanMcG.

    I doubt I will by a powder just for this,  I'll just use cure and smoked it, even though it does give a little hammy flavor.

    If anyone doesn't like the slight hammy taste, then they can buy store bought fresh stuff. (I try to keep everybody happy, but just can't do it)

    Too much extra work.

    I'll gladly lend them my million dollar grinder (maybe slightly less than that) and let them see how easy it is to make sausage to fit everyone's taste.  It seems that a lot of my family and friends, have the taste-buds of a goat anyway.  Some (ex son-in-law) think a prime rib is a really good spare rib, and some other ones think prime rib roast should be grey or brown inside.     Go figure.  LOL

    A couple of neighbors, on the other hand, truly appreciate good stuff and taste from the smoker.  But then, they get to see me out doors, for hours, making a meat that will be ate in less time than the prep took.  They know it's a labor of love, that was passed over the fence to them.


    Here is another couple of questions:

    If using cure, and I smoke sausage using cold smoke.  Would it be okay to just cold smoke and freeze before cooking it?

    Or would it be better to bring to 160*-165* first, and then freeze, and re-warm? 

    Which way would keep the meat the most moist in final product?
  10. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    The "hammy" flavour is all part of the overall final cured sausage flavour that people are usually trying to achieve. It is usually masked though by the other herbs and spices that are also added into the sausage.
    Once you add the cure they can be cold smoked - in the same way as salamis and other air dried sausages. I find them better frozen directly after smoking and then cooked fresh just before eating. You can lose some of the moist texture during rewarming.
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2016
  11. fpmich

    fpmich Smoking Fanatic

    Thanks Wade.

    Project is put on hold for awhile now.  I took a bad fall and my back is screwed up.
  12. Project is put on hold for awhile now.  I took a bad fall and my back is screwed up.
    [/quote] hope your ok
  13. wade

    wade Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I am sorry to hear that. Not too serious I hope.

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