Making links in collagen casing
hbrednek last edited by
I’m new to sausage making and recently we made our first attempt at making sausage. We are using collagen casings. Filling the casings was a straightforward process but I think we overfilled them as they burst almost immediately on cooking. Second problem was the links we made simply unwound themselves after we cut them - and even unwound themselves if we cooked them without cutting at the links. So, can I get any advice on how to judge the correct amount of filling before making links and is there anything I can do to make the links actually be links, rather than just cylinders filled with sausage meat?
Couple things, collagen is know for not staying linked. You can twist two links together to help they stay. What are you making? As far as overstuffing, it’s a feel thing- what stuffer are you using? Whether it’s off of a stuffer or off of a grinder you just need time to do a better job throttling the speed that the casing comes off with your thumb it comes with experience. Waltons has a number of videos online to help get a better handle on the stuffing is well I’d recommend watching it on with them.
@hbrednek Park Sider (as usual!) pretty much accurately broke it down for you. I love Collagen because it is easier to use than Hog or Sheep casings, no prep is needed and I also like the snap from a fresh collagen more than i like the snap from a hog casing. What I don’t like is exactly what your issue was with linking, they just don’t stay as tightly wrapped, one thing you can do that will help is after you link them and before you cut them put them in a freezer for about an hour. They will still have a tendency to come undone but they will hold a little better.
As for overstuffing it is a “feel” thing. You are most likely using too much pressure when holding the casing on the tube. A slightly understuffed casing is preferable in my opinion as you can simply twist it a few extra times and it will firm up where as an overstuffed casing will pop when you go to twist it.
Cooked a batch of summmer in PK 100 casings are 1 7/8 by 12 cooked at 120 for one hour then 140 two hours then 180 tell internal of 152 but when I went to pull them the fat had liquefied any ideas
Tom T from Boise, ID
Oh… I ground the pork fat and the venison at the same time. 2 chunks of venison, 1 chunk of pork, back and forth…
Yes… sure cure and sure gel binder. The venison and pork fat were both still partially frozen when I ground them. First through the large course plate, then again through the small plate. (Not sure of sizes, but these are the plates i normally use for summer sausage). I probably should have put the meat back in the freezer before seasoning but i was pressed for time. I mixed by hand for 14 or 15 minutes. I also think I might have added to much water. The video said 2 quarts for wild game 2 pints for fatty pork. I put in 1 quart and about another cup. I mixed until it got tacky and then mixed some more. The meat seemed soupy to me but the video said that would be ok.
The shriveling occurred before I bumped the temp up. I was using a digital thermometer with a probe, when the temp stalled for a couple hours, I suspected the temp might be reading inaccurately so I opened the door to confirm with a dial thermometer. The digital was accurate but the sausage was already shriveling.
Another thing that bothered me was the casings… these had perforations for some reason. I e never used perforated casings before and seemed like I was losing a pot of moisture through them. Did I have the wrong casings? The other fibrous casings in the catalog said you were supposed to poke them anyway.