The amount of dextrose will affect the ultimate tang, and pH. Different bacteria are supposed to taste different, but i haven't verified that yet. I have all 4 types now in my freezer, and i'm planning on doing a test soon.
There is a minimum amount listed in Bertolli's book to be safe. He lists this as 0.5% of the raw weight of the fat and meat.
I noticed that most people are using a bactoferm acidifier. I went the way of Sausage Maker. I haven't noticed any overly tanginess, but I have noticed strange measurements when trying to use Fermento. For instance, if I use the Fermento for Bertolli's Fennel Salami and used as instructed in the recipe, the flavor is good. Yet, if I would following the dosage recommended on the container, I think it would be incredibly sour.
I didn't break down and buy bactoferm when I placed a Butcher Packer order as I still have a lot of Fermento. However, I did buy some of the exterior mold/penicillium. Does anyone have a smaller, practical ratio for spraying a small amount of sausages?
These US products aren't (seemingly) available to me here in England.
However, I learned (probably from this thread, way back) that they are entirely different.
And easily confused as being thought to be equivalent
But they aren't.
Fermento is an inert flavouring product, that does little or nothing for food safety.
The quantity of Fermento to be used is simply a matter of strength of flavour.
The various Bactiferm offerings, by contrast, are live cultures.
F-RM, for example, has the function of feasting on sugars (like dextrose), and thus making lactic acid, thereby acidifying the dried sausage. (M-EK - for the exterior - doesn't acidify.)
Acidification to pH ~4 is one hurdle against c. botulinus. Fermento has no equivalent acidification function.
I'd echo jmolinari's point that the amount of acidification produced by the (Bactoferm) culture should be more dependant on the amount of food (sugars) available, than on the amount of starter culture mixed in.
However in summary
-- Fermento is not
a functional alternative to Bactoferm
-- Not all Bactoferm cultures provide the safeguard of acidification
Edited by dougal, 31 January 2008 - 05:14 AM.
"If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch ... you must first invent the universe." - Carl Sagan