When to add spice pack to meat
Just watched a sausage making video and wanted to get your opinion on when to add the spice pack. Last year I changed from adding spice then water to the meat in the mixer to making a slurry, mixing water and spices, then adding it to the meat. My brother likes to mix the spice into the chunks of meat before he grinds. I don’t think i’ve seen a difference other than the spice seems to suck up the water and I’m thinking that it allows more liquid to stay in the meat. Of course i have no scientific reason or proof. I’m interested to see if others have tried it different ways?
@parksider A lot of people mix in the seasoning either before they grind or between the first and second grind. If I didn’t have a mixer, and I was making a cured product where I needed protein extraction, I might add the seasoning after the first grind and then grind it again. I don’t do it this way with a cured product because it is usually a while until I can get to cleanup and seasoned meat seems to be harder to clean than unseasoned. I wouldn’t do this if making a fresh product as I’d worry about the protein extraction starting too soon but that is probably me just being overly careful.
Mixing the water in with the seasoning before the meat is fine and plenty of people do it. In the end, it really shouldn’t make any difference as long as you mix the meat enough once it is all added. However, I always tell people if they have found something that works for them don’t change! If that process works for you (and considering the sized batches you do who could argue with it?) then stick with it!
That’s a great question but a difficult one to answer! Usually, Worcestershire Sauce will have a pH of 3.6 - 4.1 while Soy Sauce has 4.4 - 5.4. Negative pH (below 7) can cause denaturing in your meat and if you have something like the 3.6 (low range of the Worcestershire Sauce) it can cause issues even when added in smaller amounts.
If you look at the ingredients in Mandarin Teriyaki Snack Stick or Sweet Teriyaki Jerky (you can do this by scrolling down and then clicking on “Additional Info” button) you will see Soy Sauce as an ingredient, so it can absolutely be added, it just needs to be in the correct amount. This is a major reason that we recommend prepackaged seasonings, your at home recipe can be wonderful but it also has the potential to destroy your products.
So, if you are going to experiment with Sauces with a negative pH then my advice is to start at very low concentrations and work your way up till you find a good amount that provides the taste you are looking for and does not negatively affect your finished product.
Anyone else have any suggestions?
Does soy sauce denature the meat like worcestershire sauce or is it ok to use in a meat stick?
Try it on just smoke. That should work fine.
I have tried a TF 34MM processed casing I got from Quality Casings. A 32MM HF and a 30MM TF, both clear processed, I got from Mar-Co Sales. Devro Is the brand I have now. I have been hanging them. the 30MM has been the best but still tougher than I want. Ideally I want a 32MM processed casing for my brats. Does Walton’s send out samples? I do have to order some other items.
Thank you for your suggestions. I will try a couple of ideas your suggestions have given me.