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Cooking & Curing from "Charcuterie": Part 2

Charcuterie Cookbook

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#91 Chris Amirault

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 09:55 AM

Great job, Susan! I second Ron's request for the recipe. I'll be interested in particular how you feel about the fat ratio.
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#92 snowangel

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 10:15 AM

I used the chicken with tomato and basil recipe from Charcuterie.

I think my fat/meat ratio was right on, but I'll know better after we grill some up.
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#93 Pallee

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 12:15 PM

Susan, Keep your unused casings in a container of water in the refrigerator. I've kept them a few weeks and they are fine. Just run cold water in the container for a few minutes to rinse them before using next time. Beautiful sausage, BTW. It is so easy, you kind of wonder why it took so long to do it, eh?

Some of my chicken sausage recipes use olive oil instead of fat back. I've also used the real fatty part of bacon for a bit of smokey goodness.

#94 jmcgrath

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 12:51 PM

I'll be using a KA meat grinder and stuffer.  Any tips, hints and potential pitfalls welcome.

View Post

There is a small winged plastic thing who's use isn't obvious. It's a placeholder to replace the cutter when you are stuffing. I just noticed upthread that someone called it the die.

Jim

Edited by jmcgrath, 11 April 2006 - 01:06 PM.


#95 snowangel

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 01:01 PM

I'll be using a KA meat grinder and stuffer.  Any tips, hints and potential pitfalls welcome.

View Post

There is a small winged plastic thing who's use isn't obvious. It's a placeholder to replace the cutter when you are stuffing.

Jim

View Post


I did remember the winged plastic thing once I'd gotten everything assembled, but before I'd started!
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#96 hwilson41

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 01:07 PM

Susan, soon you'll be an old pro. We're all anxious to hear how the flavor turned out. Based on earlier reports, I'm sure it will be delicious. And congrats on remembering the plastic thing. Life is such a drag without a plastic thing :raz:.
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#97 Bombdog

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 01:21 PM

Dave, what size casing did you use for that Tuscan salame?

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Jason,
I just used the standard hog casings...not sure of the mm size, about 1 1/4-1/2 in diameter.

Dave
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#98 Bombdog

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 01:31 PM

Susan and Ron
Those things look awesome!

Sorry I've been away for a few hours guys...we were enjoying the pool and 80 degree weather here today. <dig>

Anyway, I too am a link-a-holic. I paid a visit to the butcher yesterday and came away with 10 lbs of fresh shoulder, 5 lbs of fat back and 13 lbs of belly. Can you say fresh? When I asked if they had any belly available, she said, "Let me see if they have started cutting up the hogs yet?"

So, other than the pool today we have cubed up 5 lbs of beef for peperone, 10 lbs of shoulder for more Tuscan salame and Linguica, and separated and put 3 sections of belly into cure for bacon. We're getting ready to stuff the peperone and linguica. Tomorrow we'll finish up the Tuscan salame and some turkey sausage of our own design.

Yesterday, when Beth got off graveyards, we had a charcuterie plate of bresaola, duck breast proscuitto, and Tuscan salame with pecorino. For dinner we had pasta carbonara with homemade panceta...

Is this a great new hobby or what!?

Dave
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#99 Abra

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 02:51 PM

It's beyond a new hobby, it's a new life.

Susan, beautiful sausages. how did you know what to do with the plastic thingy? I don't understand from the description here (have I read the instructions yet? Why, no.)

But I do have my grinder and stuffer now, so as soon as I get my taxes done (wish I could stuff them!) I'll be playing catch-up. I do have a piece of lamb to start for prosciutto tonight, so I'm not being a total slug, but I want to make sausages like everybody else!

#100 ronnie_suburban

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 03:07 PM

Yesterday, when Beth got off graveyards, we had a charcuterie plate of bresaola, duck breast proscuitto, and Tuscan salame with pecorino.  For dinner we had pasta carbonara with homemade panceta...

Is this a great new hobby or what!?

View Post

Awesome! That must have been one helluva satisfying meal.

And to take it one step futher, as Abra mentioned some pages back, I can't wait to host a Charcuterie party. Being able to offer a group of my most appreciative friends plates full of hand-crafted tastes -- meats, pickles, breads -- along with some wine and cheese -- would be so much fun. In fact, the only thing that could possibly be better would be receiving an invite to someone else's Charcuterie party. :biggrin:

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#101 Dave Weinstein

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 03:26 PM

I still haven't worked up the nerve/time to work on sausages yet, but I've had great luck with batches of bacon.

This week I did a small truffled bacon (about 1lb of pork belly, and I included 1 TBS of white truffle oil in the cure), and a larger (around 1.75lb) herbed bacon (using fresh rosemary, oregano, and thyme from the gardon, and basil and garlic from a nearby farm).

Currently curing, a chai bacon (brown sugar, lapsang souchong tea, green cardamom, black pepper, allspice, and cloves).

--Dave

#102 snowangel

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 03:33 PM

I still haven't worked up the nerve/time to work on sausages yet, but I've had great luck with batches of bacon.


Dave, work up the courage. As you'll notice just up-topic, I wanted plenty of hand-holding, but sure didn't need much, and the rewards...

We'll grill the sausages tomorrow (yes, I know I wanted to do them tonight, but not being sure of the outcome, I have something else in the hopper that needs to be used tonight).

Courage, my friend! We are here to help, and I can honestly say it was much easier than I expected and a ton of fun.

Call me an addict.
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#103 ronnie_suburban

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 03:44 PM

I still haven't worked up the nerve/time to work on sausages yet, but I've had great luck with batches of bacon.

This week I did a small truffled bacon (about 1lb of pork belly, and I included 1 TBS of white truffle oil in the cure), and a larger (around 1.75lb) herbed bacon (using fresh rosemary, oregano, and thyme from the gardon, and basil and garlic from a nearby farm).

Currently curing, a chai bacon (brown sugar, lapsang souchong tea, green cardamom, black pepper, allspice, and cloves).

--Dave

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Dave, those bacons sound really great. How did that truffled bacon taste? I may have to give that one a shot.

One thing I did (and recommended several pages ago) is to make your first sausage attempt a relatively easy one. I used the breakfast sausage recipe in the book and made "bulk" sausage without any casings. I did this before I'd even researched stuffers. Of course, one taste of those delicious sausages and I started this thread. :wink:

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#104 jmcgrath

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 03:52 PM

Susan, beautiful sausages.  how did you know what to do with the plastic thingy?  I don't understand from the description here (have I read the instructions yet?  Why, no.)

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I don't remember the plastic thingy being in the instructions. It is used to support the impeller thingy when a cutting disk isn't in place. Look how the tabs of the grinding disk fit into the body of the grinder. The plastic thingy fits into the same slots when a grinding disk isn't in place, as when you are stuffing. I think it will be obvious once you look how things fit together.

Edited to add one more thing: Silver skin really clogs up the KA grinder, especially when using the finer grinding disk. Plan on disassembling several times midstream unless you trim carefully.

Jim

Edited by jmcgrath, 11 April 2006 - 04:09 PM.


#105 Dave Weinstein

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 04:14 PM

Dave, those bacons sound really great.  How did that truffled bacon taste?  I may have to give that one a shot.


The truffled bacon was really nice around the edges, but not so pronounced inside. Next time I do it, it will be with another very small piece of bacon, and I'll cut it into smaller blocks (and score it down the center).

--Dave

Edited by Dave Weinstein, 11 April 2006 - 04:14 PM.


#106 Bombdog

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 04:14 PM

I don't remember the plastic thingy being in the instructions. It is used to support the impeller thingy when a cutting disk isn't in place. Look how the tabs of the grinding disk fit into the body of the grinder. The plastic thingy fits into the same slots when a grinding disk isn't in place, as when you are stuffing. I think it will be obvious once you look how things fit together.

View Post

Posted Image

Does this help?
Dave Valentin
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"So, what if we've got it all backwards?" asks my son.
"Got what backwards?" I ask.
"What if chicken tastes like rattlesnake?" My son, the Einstein of the family.


#107 snowangel

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 06:07 PM

Edited to add one more thing:  Silver skin really clogs up the KA grinder, especially when using the finer grinding disk. Plan on disassembling several times midstream unless you trim carefully.



Uptopic some, Michael told me not to be so paranoid about the "silverskin" on the thighs. He was right. My first grinding ever...nary a clog! I know I will be much more careful with venison and pork.

Now, to my next question. One fix and we (my kids and I) feel like junkies. We are looking at the recipes. We see a turkey with cherry sausage. We see a venison and cherry terrine. We see a smoked venison sausage.

We are thinking of a venison and cherry sausage, not smoked.

Michael, if you are out there, answer a question about the cherries. Every dried cherry I see is a tart cherry that has been sweetened. Is this appropriate? If you were to do what I'm thinking of, can you suggest some seasonings?

I have the venison, and Thursday or Friday I will have the back fat. Who cares that I have 25-30 coming over on Easter and I need to clean the house? We need to stuff more sausages!
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#108 Chris Amirault

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 06:49 PM

While folks are discussing them here, I thought I'd add a couple of thoughts about the KA grinder pieces. It's really worth sticking every piece into the freezer for a good while to chill them fully. I also found that sharpening the grinding blade makes a big difference: just run each edge of the wheel-like blade along a flat sharpening stone (I use the ones from my EdgePro system) several times.
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#109 snowangel

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 07:34 PM

While folks are discussing them here, I thought I'd add a couple of thoughts about the KA grinder pieces. It's really worth sticking every piece into the freezer for a good while to chill them fully. I also found that sharpening the grinding blade makes a big difference: just run each edge of the wheel-like blade along a flat sharpening stone (I use the ones from my EdgePro system) several times.

View Post



Golly, gee, for all of the hand holding, I'm feeling pretty darned smart, because I stuck everything in the freezer last night (including the KA mixing bowl that I knew I'd be grinding into). And, did sharpen the blade using a plain old stone.
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#110 ronnie_suburban

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 08:08 PM

While folks are discussing them here, I thought I'd add a couple of thoughts about the KA grinder pieces. It's really worth sticking every piece into the freezer for a good while to chill them fully. I also found that sharpening the grinding blade makes a big difference: just run each edge of the wheel-like blade along a flat sharpening stone (I use the ones from my EdgePro system) several times.

View Post



Golly, gee, for all of the hand holding, I'm feeling pretty darned smart, because I stuck everything in the freezer last night (including the KA mixing bowl that I knew I'd be grinding into). And, did sharpen the blade using a plain old stone.

View Post

Yep, that's where I've actually been storing my stuff. It goes into the freezer directly from the dishwasher, so it's always ready to go.

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#111 snowangel

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 08:51 PM

While folks are discussing them here, I thought I'd add a couple of thoughts about the KA grinder pieces. It's really worth sticking every piece into the freezer for a good while to chill them fully. I also found that sharpening the grinding blade makes a big difference: just run each edge of the wheel-like blade along a flat sharpening stone (I use the ones from my EdgePro system) several times.

View Post



Golly, gee, for all of the hand holding, I'm feeling pretty darned smart, because I stuck everything in the freezer last night (including the KA mixing bowl that I knew I'd be grinding into). And, did sharpen the blade using a plain old stone.

View Post

Yep, that's where I've actually been storing my stuff. It goes into the freezer directly from the dishwasher, so it's always ready to go.

=R=

View Post


Saves valuable cupboard space, BTW. Tossed all sorts of odd freezer burned and unlabled things today to make room for a permanent freezer fixture!
Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

#112 Abra

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Posted 11 April 2006 - 09:01 PM

Thanks for the explanation and the picture, Jim and Dave! That's perfectly clear.

That chai-spice bacon sounds really cool to me, Dave W. How did it turn out?

I guess the two ice cream canisters that already live in the freezer are gonna have to learn to share, now that the grinder parts will be moving in.

#113 Chris Amirault

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 05:02 AM

While folks are discussing them here, I thought I'd add a couple of thoughts about the KA grinder pieces. It's really worth sticking every piece into the freezer for a good while to chill them fully. I also found that sharpening the grinding blade makes a big difference: just run each edge of the wheel-like blade along a flat sharpening stone (I use the ones from my EdgePro system) several times.

View Post



Golly, gee, for all of the hand holding, I'm feeling pretty darned smart, because I stuck everything in the freezer last night (including the KA mixing bowl that I knew I'd be grinding into). And, did sharpen the blade using a plain old stone.

View Post

Yep, that's where I've actually been storing my stuff. It goes into the freezer directly from the dishwasher, so it's always ready to go.

=R=

View Post


Saves valuable cupboard space, BTW. Tossed all sorts of odd freezer burned and unlabled things today to make room for a permanent freezer fixture!

View Post

After all this curing and stuff and smoking, Ron and Susan, you've got freezer space?!?
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#114 James Satriano

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 05:28 AM

I am in ht NYC area and having trouble locating back fat. I tried Niman ranch but they wanted $19 for 5 lbs and $20 to ship. Almost $40 for 5 lbs of fat seems a little over the top. Any suggestions.

Jim

#115 Dave Weinstein

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 08:27 AM

That chai-spice bacon sounds really cool to me, Dave W.  How did it turn out?


It's on day 2 of curing, so I won't know until next week.

Tonight I need to freeze some of this weeks batch (the herb and truffle bacons), or they will go away too quickly...

--Dave

#116 ronnie_suburban

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 08:41 AM

After all this curing and stuff and smoking, Ron and Susan, you've got freezer space?!?

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Well, yes but I gotta' keep moving that inventory . . . :biggrin:

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#117 hwilson41

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 10:07 AM

I am in ht NYC area and having trouble locating back fat.... Any suggestions.

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Try one of the Latino mercados. Most of them keep fatback for making their own sausage. If memory serves, I paid about $1/lb, if that, the last time I bought some here in northern VA.
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#118 ronnie_suburban

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 10:15 AM

Re reducing the black pepper, did you give any thought to increasing the cayenne a bit to hold the heat constant?  I'm thinking I might try that, but not sure yet.

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I've been thinking about this and I'm going to cut the black pepper to 2T from 4T and increase the cayenne pepper to 3T from 2T. At least, that's my plan for the next run, which hopefully, will be this weekend. I'm also going to make another batch of breakfast sausage this weekend and tube them into sheep casings. Those are the 2 types of sausages that I feel I've really zeroed in on, both preference-wise and trial & error-wise. I think, using what I've learned so far, those batches should both come out exactly how I'd like them to.

After that, I still want to cure and cold-smoke some salmon and get into the dry-cured sausages too. I will definitely need some guidance when it comes to rigging a curing chamber. I've got a basement but because it's finished, it doesn't get particularly cool down there until I start running my AC for the season.

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#119 hwilson41

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 10:31 AM

I've been thinking about this and I'm going to cut the black pepper to 2T from 4T and increase the cayenne pepper to 3T from 2T.  At least, that's my plan for the next run, which hopefully, will be this weekend.

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Must be the "great minds" phenomenon at work again :wacko:. After reading your comments about the bitterness in the finish, those are the exact proportions I decided on. I'm still in search of Pecan right now, and probably won't try the Andouille until I find some...soon, I hope.
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#120 Bombdog

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Posted 12 April 2006 - 01:45 PM

Lots of stuff going on around here the last two days. We got the peperone into the curing box today and hot smoked some linguica

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Getting ready to grind some more meat for Tuscan salame. That stuff is gonna go fast and I feel a need for replacements.

Dave
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"So, what if we've got it all backwards?" asks my son.
"Got what backwards?" I ask.
"What if chicken tastes like rattlesnake?" My son, the Einstein of the family.






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