I need advice on how to inject meat for a ham

Discussion in 'Pork' started by alan123, Oct 25, 2015.

  1. alan123

    alan123 Fire Starter

    I'm planning on taking a pork loin, cure and smoke it for lunch meat. I'm looking at one of Len Poli's recipes which calls for injections, new ground for me. I'm also planning on using a regular 16g needle with a 20cc syringe, I know it's not a regular type of needle for this purpose, any problems using this type of needle? Can anyone give me any tips on injecting meat, how much, how far apart, any signs from the meat when it has enough, etc? Also if anyone has a recipe suggestion they wouldn't mind sharing that would be great! Thanks,

  2. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Alan, morning.... I just did 3 hams, 2 ways..... Enhanced ham and fresh ham.... Your syringe will be fine... Hopefully those threads are self explanatory... If not, ask questions... I'm here....



  3. alan123

    alan123 Fire Starter

    Thanks Dave, if I read it right I should do a 10% of the weight of the loin injection of the brine, is that correct?

    Part of my concern is this is a boneless loin, maybe 4 to 5 inches in diameter, not like a shoulder or butt. Poli's recipe calls for a 5 day soak in the brine, I'm way out of my league here. Do you think a 5 day soak and a 10% injection will make the loin too salty? Part of my reasoning is I have a modified Poli recipe I have used a few times for using a loin for Canadian bacon, it calls for a 10 day soak with no injections. I get a good brine saturation of the meat and it's not too salty. Maybe do a 10 day soak on the ham without injections?

    I love it when I start second guessing myself, lol. Any help or suggestions from someone with tons more experience then myself? Thanks again, Alan
  4. mowin

    mowin Master of the Pit

  5. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    You need to make up your own brine/injection solution.....

    Weigh the meat... grams is best and easiest... X 0.0025 for the amount of cure #1..(0.25%)...... X 0.02 for the amount of salt (2%).... X 0.01 for the sugar (1%).... dissolve in room temp water.... 10% of the meat hunk is normal... can be 5% or what ever works for the piece of meat... the ingredients above mentioned cannot be changed unless you decide 2.5% salt and 2% sugar would suit your taste... The cure amount is pretty much non negotiable.. 150 Ppm nitrite works for most stuff... (curing is a science... different techniques call for different amount but that discussion is for a different day)... The weight of the water does not need to be entered into the equations because ALL of the ingredients are left behind in the meat when all is said and done, or "close enough" to be within acceptable limits...


    You like 2% salt in the meat you eat... use it.... You like the way 1% sugar hides the salt without over sweetening the meat, use it...... For the amount of cure, 150 Ppm is not negotiable for this type process and hunk of meat... meat weight X 0.0025 = correct amount of cure#1 to use...
  6. alan123

    alan123 Fire Starter

    Thanks for the help and the confidence boost, I think I have it. I found another recipe here that calls for a 10 day soak and injections. I'll start with a 5% this time and adjust in the future. Thanks again.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2015
  7. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Do not mix the recipe I gave you with another recipe..... When curing, follow one recipe only......
  8. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Enhanced hams are those that have a note on the label saying, "Up to a XX % solution added or injected"... That way they can charge you $1.89 for the addition of water, salt, phosphates, sugars etc....
  9. alan123

    alan123 Fire Starter

    No I won't mix the recipes, I found a loin to ham recipe using a 10 day soak, I plan to also do some Canadian bacon which uses a 10 day soak also. So I'll just smoke both the ham and bacon together. Different brines but both recipes call for a long smoke bumping to 180 one with an internal temp of 150 and the other with an internal temp of 155.

    This should get me started with curing hams, even if it's a wannabe ham. Thanks and I'm open to advice all the time.

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