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Tough sausage casings

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hi all,


I have only tried smoking some polish sausage a few times and here is the problem I 've had.


The casings turn out really tough!


I smoked them at about 150 or so for at least 4-5 hours as per the instructions I had.

I soaked the natural casings in water with a little vinegar for about an hour prior to stuffing..

Did I do something wrong.

Any help is appreciated because I'd like to try again soon.


post #2 of 7

I normally only use salt water when I soak casings, not sure if that has anything to do with it or not  I also bring sausage up to 165  internal temps and I don't think you can do that at 150 degrees chamber temps.  If the sausage is cured why not smoke at the lower temp for a couple of hours and then turn up the heat and bring internal temp to at least 160 maybe 165.  This will help with the casings.


If the sausage is fresh with no cure then you only have 4 hours to get to your internal temp.  I am saying 165 is safe, others will say 160.  Either way I don't think you are getting the casings and meat hot enough.

post #3 of 7

Here is a great site with lots of info about making sausage!! 



post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks Al, 

I will try that!

post #5 of 7

You didnt do anything wrong........You rinse the inside and soak the casings If they were packed in salt I would soak overnight before stuffing. What you did should have came out fine.  I would try another brand. I prefer natural casings in a salt brine solution for best results.



post #6 of 7

did you soak them in vinegar?

post #7 of 7

Soak the casings in cold water 2-3 hours prior to stuffing. The vinegar just makes the veins take on a transparent look (better eye appeal)


150 is kinda high to start with. Try 130 for 1 to 1.5 hours to dry the casing. This will help the casing dry and make a better bond with the meat surface. It also helps with smoke bonding to the casing surface. Then you can bump the heat to 140, 150, 160, 170....Try not to exceed 175.


Remember to add your cure 1.

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