Salami is a type of cured sausage that can be made from pork, beef a combination of the two and can also be made from wild game. It can be fermented and dry cured or cooked and smoked. We are going to use 100% beef so we are going to use our regular Salami Unit, if we were making this out of deer or wild game then the Cotto Salami might be a better choice. We are also going to be using Encapsulated Citric acid to give the meat that nice tang and carrot fiber to help with the bind. If you are making this out of Wild Game I would suggest you also use cold phosphate to increase the water holding capacity of the meat.
Since this is salami we want to see particle definition in our finished product. That means we want to get our meat cold and keep it cold through the mixing process, once the meat heats up the fat will start to smear and we will lose our chance at a nice looking finished product. This step would be even more important if we were doing a fermented product to allow everything to dry properly but I still want a nice looking product so I put my meat and my head assembly to my grinder in the freezer to get everything cold. I am also going to separate my fat from my lean and grind them separately, I’m just going to cut off the fat cap and then put that back in the freezer until it is time to grind it.
Before I start grinding I am going to soak my fibrous salami casings in warm water to make them nice and pliable to make stuffing easier, they need to soak for about 30 minutes in warm water.
I will grind my lean twice, once through a 3/8″ plate and then through a 1/8 plate with our Weston #12 Butcher Series Grinder. Always remember to oil your plates and knives to keep friction and heat down. The fat, I am just going to grind once through a 3/8 plate. I ground my fat last so I can go right from the grinding to the mixing without the fat warming up. If I wasn’t able to do this quickly I would put my fat back in the freezer.
Now we need to mix the seasoning, cure, carrot fiber and water with our lean meat and mix until we have protein extraction. As soon as the meat starts to get sticky I am going to add my fat and then mix that in for a minute. Then I’ll mix in my Encapsulated Citric Acid and mix it for another 60 seconds.
Next just stuff them into fibrous salami casings until they are full and sqqmooth. Make sure you leave enough room at the end of each casing to clip them with a hog ring.
To smoke these we are going to use a simple smoke schedule and we are going to add a pan of water into our smoker to keep the humidity up and make the cooking process faster. Either hang your casings on smoke sticks or lay on racks in your smokehouse or oven. Just be sure to leave a slight gap between each salami. A simple cooking schedule you can follow is here: 125F for 1 hour then 140F for 1 hour then 155F for 2 hours and finally 175F until internal meat temp of 160F. I added smoke during the start of the second hour but you can skip this if you don’t want a smoked salami.
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