Water bath sticks


  • Can anyone explain the Science of how giving sticks a ice water bath right after removing from the smoker helps the casings adhere to the meat?
    I do for summer sausage because we use fibrous casings that require pre soaking and have a larger mass so soak in ice water to stop the cooking and I think it helps prevent casings from sticking to meat.
    I remove my sticks, take in basement which is always 68 - 72 degrees hang and turn the fan on. The internal temp never rises in 15 min or less internal temp is in the 80s.
    I could be wrong but from the videos I have seen I don’t think commercial manufacturers water bath their sticks.
    Please don’t take me wrong I’m not trying to convert anyone just trying to understand. Never to old to learn new ways.
    When first started making sticks years ago was plagued with loose casings. Made in oven, made on smoker and read everything I could and found no explanation. Then read about a guy cooking very slow and low 140 1 hr, 150 2.5hr, 160 2.5hr 170 2 hr then 180 and pulled at 162- 165 no ice water bath. That resolved my loose casings problem and they have a nice snap.
    Read on forum and learned about using sure gel so placed a order yesterday, excited about trying.
    Thanks in advance for any reply’s.

  • Regular Contributors

    Jesser You are preaching to the choir here, as far as I am concerned. I can’t give you a scientific reason to your question above. If there is one, I hope someone will speak up.

    In my experience, I have not found a reason to use a water bath of any kind on a product the size of snack sticks

  • Sous Vide Canning PK100 Team Blue Power User Regular Contributors Team Orange

    Perhaps it is rapid cooling stops cooking and cold shrinks the casings down. I don’t know, but I been doing it for 25 years and it works for me everytime.

  • Team Orange PK100 Sous Vide Power User

    lkrfletcher That’s what I was thinking. For many of us, the water bath is the easiest way to get that rapid cooling, but that does mean it’s the only way to get the desired product.

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