Summer sausage Dry and grainey

  • Just made 10 pounds of summer sausage. End result is dry and grainey. My thought is not enough fat, it was made with beef, chuck and eye of round. Added pork fat at 20 percent. Used carrot fiber and water. Will adding too much water cause an issue or was it needing more fat.

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    If you added 20% to chuck and eye of the round (with fat still on?) your problem shouldn’t have been too little fat. That is at least more than the minimum especially if you added carrot fiber. I am guess if you used Encapsulated Citric Acid either it ruptured during the mixing process, which will denature the proteins too early and nothing will bind or the product wasn’t above 130° for 1 hour which is what needs to be done to melt the cottonseed oil.

    If you didn’t add ECA then I would guess it would have to be that it wasn’t mixed long enough and you didn’t get proper protein extraction. If this happens then your fat will render out during the cooking process. Another possibility is an issue with the smoke schedule, what schedule did you follow?

  • Not sure how much of your meat block was eye of round, but the muscles in the round do have a dry and somewhat crumbly texture when ground. Same reason ground round might not make the best burger, meatball or loaf. Just a thought.

  • Was mostly eye of round as had some frozen for a few weeks that I wanted to use up. Possible was not mixed long enough for protein extraction. Fibrous casings were wrinkly when done so assuming fat did leach out. Made batches prior with no issues so this threw me for a loop. Used chuck before also, so will keep away from the eye of round for Summer sausage.

  • Jonathon I’m curious. Will adding too much water (to help with the flow during the stuffing) cause the fat to render? I’ve had this happen and I had added more water than the recipe called for thinking that the meat was too thick to stuff, however it turned out that I had a junk off brand of sausage stuffer that broke which made it hard to crank.

  • Team Blue Dry Cured Sausage Admin Walton's Employee Canning

    @kanevak I suppose it could happen but I’d think you would have to add a really insane amount of water. I can say from experience that 2 qts of water per 25 lb batch won’t cause this. It will take a long time to cook and give you an odd texture but won’t mess up the bind. Now, if you added something like a gallon to a 25 lb batch then maybe it would? It might make it so the fat is suspended and couldn’t bind to any of the proteins. I want to try this but also don’t want to ruin meat!

  • Power User

    @kanevak my last batch of summer sausage fatted out but I blame myself for not enough protein extraction and a higher fat content to start with

  • Jonathon I do my batches in 12.5 lb batches because I have a small smoker. So I very well could have added too much water. Not an insane amount But my meat was nice and sticky before I added extra water so I may have ruined a decent protein extraction? Regardless, they still taste amazing! It’s hard to ruin some Willies snack sticks taste-wise!

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