Soggy Casings Help

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by hondabbq, Oct 13, 2016.

  1. I have made meat sticks several times, with 7-8 different flavors and they all get rave reviews from family and friends. I usually make 10-20 lbs at a time. I feel that if Im going to get the stuffer dirty, the clean up is the same for 5 lbs or 20.

    I have the stuffing and the cooking down perfectly ( I think)

    Here is my process. Ill try to be as descript as possible as to not leave any questions.

    Usually 50/50 mix lean ground beef and lean ground pork.

    Stuffed into standard Collagen casings. Let sit overnight for cure to do its thing.

    Into the Smoke Vault at 140F for 1.5 hours ish, then bumped up 10F every hour until 170F then let the IT come to 156.

    Remove from the smoker and allow to bloom on the counter overnight.

    At this point the casings are wrinkled, snappy and perfect, like they should be.

    Here is where I have questions.

    I portion them out into  FS bags or freezing. Also I leave a good number from the freezer and put into the fridge.

    This is where I have issues.

    I find that in the fridge, the casings become soggy.  You bite into it and the meat comes out and sometimes the casing is remaining. Its all chewy. It is easily peeled off the stick which is what most do, but its not right. The snap is gone.

    I have the same issue with ones that come out of the freezer. I let them temper on the counter or in the fridge in the FS bag and they are all sogged out when I open the bag.

    Is my problem that I make too many at a time and having to store them is my issue? I like having several flavors in storage so If I want or crave a certain one I can have it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 13, 2016
  2. gearjammer

    gearjammer Master of the Pit

    I can't answer your question about the casings.

    I have not yet tried stuffing anything.

    But I do often make snack sticks.

    I just shoot them out of my jerky gun, no casing.

    I can't take any credit for this, I stole it from the Bearcarver.

    They come out just fine, they freeze well and live in the fridge well too.

    Someone that knows more about this will be along shortly.

    That's just how I do mine and they are OK.

    Have fun.

  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    After tempering, try a paper bag for refer storage...  If that doesn't work, try a different casing manufacturer...  Big difference between manufacturers....  at least I have found that....
  4. Ive never had luck with collagen caseings. Like your experience once refrigerated or frozen they are soft and separate from the sticks. Now i use sheep caseings and they work out alot better. They are more expensive but worth it to me. My local supplier only has pre sleeved which is even better because they slide right on the horn and you only need to soak them for 30 to 45 minutes.
  5. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Collagen casings will do that. Try natural casings or no casings or peel the casing off before eating.
  6. smokeymose

    smokeymose Master of the Pit

    I noticed when keeping in a zip lock in the fridge you could see the condensation on the inside of the baggie. If you let then sit in that moisture they get mold on them fairly quick. I use brown lunch size bags now.
    Some batches the collagen will "stick", some don't. I thought maybe I wasn't stuffing tight enough, but that didn't seem to work either.
    It's not really that big a deal to me. I'll keep using collagen because it's so convenient.
  7. smokesontuesday

    smokesontuesday Smoking Fanatic

    Collagen does the same for me. It is fine fresh but once it is frozen it is game over. I just peel it off. Good side effect is the sticks look nice and uniform after peeling.

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