Sausage Casings 103 - Preparing Your Casings
Sausage Casings 103 - Preparing Your Casings
Attend this entry level class from Meatgistics University by watching the video, reading the article and post any questions you have!
These casings are all made from different materials, are best suited for different products and have different preparation requirements.
Most types of collagen are edible and require no preparation or cleaning before being ready for use. All you have to do is take them out of the package, put them on the stuffing tube and stuff them, the moisture from the meat will rehydrate them during the cooking process so they will not have that tough dry texture that they do before being used.
For nonedible collagen, the rule of 15s comes into play. They must be soaked for 15 minutes in a 15% salt solution that is 15° C (59° F) before they can be used for stuffing. With any type of collagen blowouts are of medium concern, you need to make sure you don’t overstuff your casings or you will have blowouts either during stuffing or when linking.
Cellulose Casings are made from plant material and are ready for use right out of the package, just put them on the stuffing tube and begin stuffing. These casings are inedible and must be removed either before or after the cooking process. Luckily they have a thick black stripe down them to allow you to easily determine if the casing has been removed or not. These casings are very strong and blowouts are not a concern.
Fibrous Casings are a dried paper-like casing that needs to be rehydrated before they are suitable for use. To do this fill a bowl with 80-100° and let them soak for 30-60 minutes. When they are ready for use they should be pliable but not soggy. We recommend that you only soak as many casings as you will need but if you do soak too many you can simply allow extras to dry out and then use them again in the future. Fibrous Casings are very strong and blowouts should not be a concern.
Natural Hog or Sheep Casings
100 Yard “Hank” - If you purchased the 100-yard hank of hog or sheep casings you only need to rinse the outside and then soak the casings in hot water for an hour, there is no need to flush them. Natural casings are a natural casing and therefore they are prone to blowouts, you need to be careful not to overstuff the casings or you can have blowouts either when stuffing or when linking.
Home Pack - If you purchased home pack hog or sheep casings they will be in a bag and packed with salt. You will need to flush these casings by allowing water to run all the way through them, then you will need to rinse any salt off of the outside of the casing and then soak them in hot water for 1 hour prior to stuffing.
Tubed Natural Casing - If you have the tubed sheep or hog casings they only need to be soaked as well as they have been flushed already. When loading these onto the stuffing tubes you will place the plastic sleeve over the tube and then thread the rest of the casing on. Once your casing is fully loaded you need to grab the plastic sleeve and pull it out from between the casing and the tube, it should all come out fairly easily.
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.