Premix spice packets

  • I am very new at this and so far I’ve stuck with store bought premixed seasoning packets. I’m not sure what I should be tasting! (I hope that makes sense). I have enjoyed eating what I have made so far but truthfully maybe my product was a bit under seasoned. I have read in some comments that it was felt premixed seasoning packets might be a little light and was suggested to add a little more seasoning or cut the quantity of meat. Does anyone here have this opinion of premix packets? As I gain confidence I will get away from the premix and start mixing my spices. Thanks.

  • @denny66 You can usually get away with adding some additional premix seasoning but you need to be aware that one of the primary ingredients in the mix will be salt so you must take care not to get your product too salty.

  • @denny66 you can usually get by with adding a little more seasoning but yes it could end up getting too salty. What i would recommend is adding a bit more of what you like. For example add a little more black pepper, garlic, red pepper flakes, etc to get the flavor profile your looking for. For me using premix summer sausage or pepperoni snack stick seasoning i add an additional 1 TBS of course black pepper per 5lbs of meat. Makes it a better pepper profile for those i make it for. Just an example here of what to try

  • Walton's Employee

    @lamurscrappy I agree with both @Tim71 and @lamurscrappy if you try to add too much seasoning it might end up very salty and could even be inedible, so be careful. Adding more black pepper, jalapeno or individual ingredients is probably your safest way to go. Another thing you can do is to factor the seasoning and your water into your meat block. I’d only recommend this for people who are looking to boost the taste. So, if you are planning on making a 25 lb batch and your seasoning is 1 lb and you are going to use 2 lb of water then just use 22 lb of meat.

    What seasonings have you tried so far?

  • @jonathon

    I understand what you and the others who replied are saying. If I use premix from now on I’ll stick with the package instructions until I get a little more familiar with the flavors/taste that we like to prevail and adjust from that.
    Jonathan as far as brand names I’d rather not name them. Taste are an individual thing and it’s a well know brand that evidently many people are very happy with.
    I know we have several in this area that kill hogs. Most use one brand of breakfast sausage seasoning however every one of them use extra sage in their grind. Don’t know why this area is so big on extra sage, maybe it’s wide spread. I only have knowledge about this area. My grandfather has been gone since 64 and as a kid I remember that was his big thing also. Thanks

    Got to get my Jowls in cure!

  • Walton's Employee

    @denny66 The only other thing I can think of other than Sage that people either love or hate is Cilantro! It’s crazy how many people want either a ton of sage or none AT ALL in their breakfast sausage. Myself, I can take it or leave it, doesn’t move the needle for me too much one way or the other. Now Cilantro…I’m a fiend for that!

    Understood on the naming names!

  • @denny66 if its breakfast sausage your doing i would 100% add some red pepper flakes to it. It dont take much, maybe 1 TBS per 15 pounds. But it really brings out the flavor of many kinds of breakfast sausage. I wouldnt add it to maple but your basic seasoning yes. In idaho here ive been making breakfast sausage over 20 years and have always used sage in my sausage. And the freshest red pepper flakes you can get. Makes a huge difference.

  • @lamurscrappy
    No sir the mix I was originally talking about was some deer summer sausage and deer jerky. I thought both were good however I’ve tasted better. As I mentioned I’m learning and getting my confidence up.

    It was a bad decision on my part to enter the bit about the breakfast sausage in the same post. Sorry. That happened because earlier I had been down to my neighbors. Each year he takes hog orders among a few locals. One day is pretty much set aside for killing, scalding, scraping and gutting. Then everyone start breaking them down. At this point everyone is pretty much responsible for their own hog(s). He does have all the spices and meat handling equipment there for anyone’s use. Seems everyone wants to do their hog(s) different. Some grind lots of sausage, others cure their hams, bacon and etc. Most don’t want their heads so the heads are given to 1-2 fellows for souse.
    They have a pretty slick operation going.

  • @denny66 ok im with you now. So for your summer sausage i have really found that most premix packs are pretty weak for their recommended batch. If your using a beef/pork ratio it will be a closer match but when you factor in wild game which in your case is deer it does take a little more seasoning to help overcome the strong wild game taste. For what your doing i would recommend three things to really help you. Add 1 TBS per 5lbs of meat of fresh cracked course pepper and 1 TBS of red pepper flakes per 10lbs of meat. And the third thing i would highly recommend is trehalose. I use trehalose in all my specalty wild game products. Adds mild sweetness abd helps tone down the wild game taste and makes the seasonings stand out more. If you do those you will be much happier! Just make sure whatever premix you use dont have trehalose, some do.

  • @lamurscrappy
    Thanks, that is some good info. My family doesn’t like things HOT but we do like a little heat and some spice. I had not given it much thought being deer vs a pork or beef product but I’m glad you brought that out. It makes sense to me even though I don’t generally don’t oppose to the wild flavor of deer.
    The other spice? trehalose. I’ll have to study up on that one.
    Thanks Again,

  • @denny66

    Great thread.

    I’m still lurking and learning before attempting my first batch of cured sausage, which will be a 25# meat block of venison / pork for summer sausage.

    In case you wanted to look it up:

    Trehalose is a disaccharide (two sugar) molecule composed of two smaller glucose molecules linked together. It is naturally produced by the body and can also be found in common foods. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration lists trehalose as a compound under the category of “generally regarded as safe.”

  • @jonathon Some folks have a genetic disposition that make cilantro taste like soap. Kind of like rolling your tongue, you’ve either got it or you don’t and you can’t change it.

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    @newbe … Afternoon… Keep the meat BELOW 40 degrees F… Bacteria is growing while the meat is warming up… then again when cooling down… The LAST thing you want or need is a batch of meat that has been warm for an hour or longer… One good way to do that is double bowl the meat… Ice in the larger bowl and the smaller bowl, with the meat in it, on ice… You don’t want your family to get food poisoning… Dave

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  • P

    I do it all the time. Still remember my mom saying it’s not a good idea. I’m sure if you are buying a nice steak and intend it eat it as a grilled T-bone you might notice some flesh cell break down (texture change). If you are going to use it in sausage you will not notice any difference. Made brats last night. Once frozen pork and elk. Refroze the brats. I do it time and time again.

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  • E

    Here is a link to a website that has a handy Excel spreadsheet. It is, as it says a free non-commercial site.
    As for Waltons dropping the ball, I vote they are doing a great job.
    I think for all of us there are general guidelines, but unless you have a temperature and humidity controlled environment, both for the preparation, cooking (if you cook them) smoking, hanging etc, the results are bound to vary from batch to batch.
    Personally, I am searching how to get my home made smoked and dry cured pepperoni to the exact texture and firmness of Margarita pepperoni from the store.
    Through trial and error I have the flavor where I want it, but not the texture or firmness. I know time, temperature and humidity are all crucial, but the best I can do is in the basement and then subject to the environment that is there.
    I figure as long as I am not killing anyone or making anyone sick I am making progress. Thanks Waltons for all of the great information so far.
    Having said that, it would be nice to have your chart in an Excel spreadsheet.

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  • K


    Thanks Jonathon! One question tho! You eluded to 178 being high for a temp! Don’t you guys recommend setting the temp at 175 during the final stage to completion to internal temp? Three degrees shouldn’t make that much difference should it??

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  • K


    Sounds reasonable. Thanks for your input. Pulling the meat at 152 will make a big difference I bet! Thanks again.

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