5 Tips to Stuff Like a Pro
Meat Hacks: Stuff Like a Pro at Home
Learn how to Stuff Like a Pro with Walton's and Meatgistics. Watch the video, read the guide, and then post your questions or comments below.
How can I Stuff a Pro at Home?
A few weeks ago we showed you guys some tips on how you could take some of the things that commercial processors do when grinding and mixing meat and adapt them for use at home. We are continuing our effort to help you guys make the best homemade product possible so today we have some tips for you on sausage stuffing.
When a big commercial processor stuffs his product they are using a hydraulic, a vacuum or a water stuffer. You are probably using a hand stuffer so some of the advantages they have are not things you can duplicate.
1 Prevent Air Pockets The best things you can do are make sure you are packing your product in there with as few air pockets as possible. The best way to do this is to create an angle when filling it from side to side. You put in your initial amount and leave it angled from left to right then put your next level in and leave a slight angle from right to left and repeat until you fill it up. Also make sure you are really packing it down with each layer.
2 Don’t Blow it
Commercial processors have been stuffing for years and have it down to an art form, for them blowouts are a rarity. For a home processor though, nothing is more annoying than hearing that dreaded pop from your casing. It means backing your piston off, stuffing what you lost back into the cannister and fixing your casing. All of that takes time and is a major annoyance. To help avoid this make sure you are not holding the casing on the stuffing tube too tightly, different products require different amounts of pressure but whatever casing you are using should flow fairly smoothly off of the tube. So if you are busting a lot of casings make sure you aren’t over stuffing them and make sure that your air valve is functioning properly. This will help release some air pressure up through the piston. Also, as always, make sure you are lubricating your piston gasket with white oil!
3 Clamp Your Stuffer Down
Another thing you can do is to clamp your stuffer down to the table you are using, this will prevent the unit from rocking as you crank it. If you are able to I know some customers have actually had success removing the stuffer from the base and bolting it directly to the table.
4 Your Casing Matters
When stuffing it is important to remember that the size of the tube and casing you are using is going to affect how difficult it is going to be to crank it down. A 32-35mm hog casing on an 22mm horn is going to stuff a lot easier than a 19mm snack stick casing on a 12mm tube. Here is a chart that shows you what size stuffing tube to use with what casing
Casing Size Stuffing Tube Stuffing Horn 15 mm 3/8" or 10 mm X 16mm 3/8" or 10 mm X 17mm 3/8" or 10 mm X 18mm 3/8" or 10 mm X 19mm 7/16" or 12 mm X 21mm 7/16" or 13mm 1/2" 23mm 1/2" or 13 mm 1/2" 26mm 9/16" or 16 mm 1/2" 30mm 9/16" or 19 mm 1/2" 32mm 9/16" or 22 mm 3/4"
- 5 Your Piston Matters Too
Along the same lines the size of the stuffer you are using is going to matter, a 7 and 11 lb stuffer has a smaller piston so it is going to stuff easier than the larger stuffers as the larger diameter of the piston is going require more force to press it down.
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Weekly Blog Post - Octopus and Squid, Vacuum Packing
Find out what's going on at Walton's and Meatgistics this week. We will have a loose schedule for soon to be released videos, what we are working on long-term and maybe a few quick tips and tricks that are on our mind!What Videos are being released soon?
Depending on what you see as soon we will have the almost complete first round of Meatgistics University Classes released. We have broken everything down into these categories; Meat Processing Equipment, Seasoning and Additives, Fresh Sausage, Cured Sausage, Jerky, Sausage Casings, Deli Meats, Smoked Meats, Cured Whole Muscle Meats, and Specialty Sausages. Each of these topics will have multiple entry-level classes covering topics like the type of casing to use, equipment needed and a basic processing class where appropriate.What Projects are we looking ahead at?
We are going to be doing two new Will it BBQ’s, hopefully, this week where we try BBQ’ing Squid and Octopus! The squid was a suggestion by Bob Zambutto through Walton’s Inc Facebook account! I had been wanting to do both of these for a while and when I went to our local Asian Grocery Store (Tai Binh for anyone local to Wichita, KS) and they had lots of options for both, they have almost anything and I got a few more weird ideas while I was there! Anyway, I picked up some baby octopus and a full size one, some small squid and two large ones as well. I am excited and nervous to see how this goes if nothing else it should be fun to watch!What’s on our Mind?
Did you know that you shouldn’t vacuum pack Mushrooms or Garlic? I was reading a Vacmaster VP120 instruction manual the other day and I saw an interesting note that said not to vacuum pack Garlic or Mushrooms! I had no idea that you shouldn’t do this so I thought I would share that with meatgistics readers to let you know not to do it as well. Apparently, they both are prone to bacteria that will continue to grow in oxygen-free environments. I was hoping it was something more impressive than that but it is good information to have.New Products
22" X 24" Collagen Sheets This are typically used for larger whole muscle cuts of meat, like when you are making prosciutto, capocollo, or other dried hams. This is an item that we have had lots of requests for over the years so we were happy to finally find a reliable and reputable source for it.
Thanks for the response!
I think a video on processed celery would be incredible. The only place I have been able to find celery powder as a cure was from “The Sausage Maker”, they have a Facebook page. It was expensive, designed only for sausages, and wasn’t packaged well.
As for the tackiness, good idea with the cornstarch! There are a bunch of big brands with zero additives that were able to achieve the soft texture with no tackiness, so I’m thinking it has to be in the processing. I read an article where someone at KRAVE mentioned a couple details about how they process their jerky. He said they first inject the meat, then cook the whole pieces, then slice, then marinate, then dry. I have messed around with the idea behind this process a lot. Injecting with brine, sous-viding at a variety of temperatures and times, slicing, marinating, and drying. Decent results, but to be honest the high sugar method you introduced to me has seemed to have better results.
Anyway, I will keep trying to figure this out and will definitely keep you guys posted if I make any headway. In the meantime, if there is anything else you think might be worth testing, please let me know! It would be great to try and perfect this process together.
@bob-s-meatgistics I moved one of my first pork butts into the oven and my whole house smelled like smoke. My wife did not stop complaining for a week until the smell was gone from both the house and the oven. I finish all my cooks outside. If you wrap it to speed up the cook you may want to unwrap it for the last hour to put the bark back on it.
@jonathon I am definitely going to purchase and follow the steps you’ve post, thank you sir! Additionally, if anyone has recipes, please share. I’ll try them all and post what my family thought of each. Thank you all, this is a very cool and educational blog, glad I found it wish it was years ago! Thanks again.