I have been experimenting with pepperoni for some time now, trying to get it to taste like pepperoni in the store. I don't have the equipment to dry cure it so this is the best I could come up with. I think it's very good & our friends from up North loved it. They are from Pittsburgh & they go to a special market that makes pepperoni & have always said there is none like it. They didn't say mine was better, but they ate a whole log while we were having a few beers & kept telling me how good it was. I have been making it in 38 mm collagen casings, but they said they liked it bigger so this time I stuffed them in 2 1/2" fibrous summer sausage casings. I like these better because the casing peels right off. Here's the recipe I used, it's partly from Nepas and partly from Africanmeat. Then I tweaked it some too. If you want to try pepperoni give this recipe a try, but I warn you it does have a little heat.
SPICY PEPPERONI Total cook time:
About 10-12 hours
4 lbs ground chuck/med plate, or 80/20 or 70/30 ground beef
(after trying it with all 3 we like the 70/30 the best)
1 ½ tbs cayenne pepper
2 tbs Spanish paprika
4/5 tsp cure #1
2 oz Fermento
6 cloves crashed fresh garlic
4 tsp black pepper
4 tsp mustard seed
1 tbs crushed fennel seed
1 tbs crushed red pepper flakes
1 tbs garlic powder
2 tsp sugar
2 tbs salt
1 cup ice water (add all the dry to the water) and mix in blender.
Mix with meat & stuff in 38 mm collagen casings or if you want bigger tubes use fibrous 2 ½ inch summer sausage casings. Leave in fridge overnight
2 hours pre heat @120 f with no smoke
2 hours @ 140 f with smoke
Then 175 f till IT is 155 with smoke
Remove from smoker & put in ice water bath until cool
Then refrigerate with no cover for 1 week to dry them out
This is what I started with.
Cut it up into cubes.
All cubed up
Now into the grinder
Put the seasoning & cure in & mix it up
Ready to stuff
get the stuffer ready, love the ss table, the sausage just slides across it.
All stuffed & ready for a night in the fridge.
Into the MES with with hickory & Todd's special mix
All done ready to rest & dry out in the fridge
Couldn't resist had to cut one open after a few days of drying.
It's time for a snack, had some smoked Muenster that was ready, so sounds like a great combo for cocktail hour today.
So far I've tried a combo of pork & beef, 80/20 ground beef, and grinding my own chuck. Next time I'm going to try 70/30 ground beef because I think it needs a little more fat in it. I don't like the pepperoni with any pork in it, so I think the 70/30 may be just what I'm looking for. The flavor is right where I want it. I'm just looking to get the texture right. Thanks for looking & I'll be snacking on this in a couple of hours with a glass of Johnny Walker & Judy will have her wine. Happy Thanksgiving to all of you. Oh, I started working on my turducken today. Boned out all three birds & they are in Pop's brine as we speak.