Cured Whole Muscle Meat 103 - Curing Large Cuts Of Meat

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    Cured Whole Muscle Meat 103 - Curing Large Cuts Of Meat

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    Challenges of Curing Large Cuts

    Curing Large Cuts of meat can be a challenge, as no matter how you do it you are going to have more concerns about even distribution of the cure. This is why when curing larger cuts of meat an injection process is generally recommended. If you try to brine or pickle something the size of a ham you could run into an issue where the cure is going to gas out. You also have the issue of not being able to control exactly how much of the cure and seasoning gets into the meat.

    What Does Gassing Out Mean?

    Gassing out happens when the cure converts to gas and escapes the water before it is able to fully penetrate the meat. The problem with trying to cure larger cuts like a ham with just a pickle or brine is that you are relying solely on osmosis so the skin and fat need to allow the sale, seasoning, and nitrite to pass through them to the center of the ham.

    How To Overcome These Challenges

    Injecting can help you with both of these issues. First, injecting can get your cure deeply and evenly distributed in the meat right away so you aren’t wasting time waiting for the cure to penetrate the meat. This means that the cure is not converting to gas and escaping the brine solution as we are waiting for our meat to cure. It also allows us to be hyper-accurate with the amount of solution that we are getting into our meat. If we need a 10% pump and we have a 20 lb ham we know that if we pump the ham until it weighs 22 lb then we will have the exact amount of cure required.


    Even if you inject, you will still need to hold the product overnight and cover it in a 50% solution to allow the cure to equalize in the meat. The best way to create a 50% strength solution is to measure the amount of solution you have left over and add that much weight in water to it. Or you could follow the initial mixing instructions and just add twice as much water as is recommended.

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  • K

    @Jonathon @LaBarca-cf What I take @Jonathon is saying is that you might just want to “pre-grill” your fresh sausages all the way up to full cooked temperature (71 C/160 F) and then bag them. Store them on ice until you are ready to serve them. When you get ready to serve them, throw them, bag and all, into a 160 F/71 C kettle of water for 20 minutes. Your sausages will be serving temperature, smoky and delicious. You will also bypass any chance of serving bad meat. This will work especially well if you have a vacuum bag sealer. If not, slowly work the air out of a ziploc bag and seal that as well as you can.

    let us know if any of this is helpful.

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  • T

    @Jonathon sure did, and so did the other 11 out of 12 people conpared to that half hog i did. They said that both were delishous but like the black bull better. Now with that said the 1/2 hog had alot more hours of smoke time which gave it alot of smoke flavor where the black bull had more seasoning flavor. 1/2 hog was 23 hour cook with approx 6 hours smoke and one 8 lb pork butt only had 2 hours smoke. Took both meats up to 160° then cut off smoke, wrapped in foil and finished cook to 200°. Both were extremely juicy

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  • @Dave-R Interesting. I would have not expected that much difference between the two.

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