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Important Considerations in Sausage Making


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Important Considerations in Sausage Making

Temperatures

Meat products are extremely perishable and must be maintained under refrigeration (40F or below).

When you have finished processing a product, return it to the refrigerator. After the product has been formulated, smoke and cook the product to the required temperature and then return the product to refrigeration. Do not guess at the temperature of the product. Use a thermometer. Temperature abused sausage can permit excessive microbial growth and result in product spoilage and foodborne illness.

Sanitation

There is no substitute for keeping the tables, utensils and ingredients clean and free from dirt and contamination. Use plenty of hot water and soap before and after processing sausages. Always keep your hands clean. These measures prevent spoilage and foodborne illness.

Records

Just as you keep a copy of a good recipe, you should keep notes on the formulation and processing procedures of your favorite smoked and cooked sausage. Ingredients, times, temperatures and end results should be noted. This will help to make a better sausage the next time.

Fat Content

Different sausages have different amounts of fat. Avoid making the formula too lean as the sausage will be too dry and hard. Fresh pork sausage contains 30 to 45 percent fat. Smoked or roasted sausage contains 20 to 30 percent fat. Formulate the fat content just as you would the other ingredients in a sausage.

Storage

The length of time a sausage can be stored depends on the type of sausage. Fresh sausage is highly perishable and will only last seven to 10 days. However, it may be frozen for four to six months if wrapped in moisture-vapor proof wrap (freezer paper). Smoked sausages which have been cooked and contain salt and nitrite may last from two to four weeks under refrigeration. These types include smoked, Polish, cotto salami and bologna. Summer sausages which have been fermented to produce the acid tangy flavor are more durable and may be stored for several weeks in the refrigerator.




Curing and Smoking