I hope everyone has had a great Christmas. I had some extra time off from work at Christmas, so was able to do a sausage project I've wanted to do for some time: homemade Kielbasa! This was my first time doing this, so I used lots of guidance from SMF. I closely followed the recipes and process outlined by Couger78 and Shannon127, respectively, on these fabulous threads:
Thank you Kevin and Shannon for such great posts! Also thank you Chef Jimmy J, who fielded a couple of emergency questions via PM last night regarding blooming and resting of the kielbasa.
Here is 3 1/2 lbs pork shoulder and 2 lbs lean beef chuck, all cubed and ready to go. I mixed it with 7 grams (1 1/4 tsp) Cure #1, 36 grams salt (~ 1.2%), and 31 grams of sugar. I let it cure in the refrigerator for 24 hours, stirring occasionally.
I ground the cured meat along with 3/4 lb of cubed pork back fat through my medium plate (10 mm) one time. Then gave it another few hours of cure time in the refrigerator before continuing.
And mixed it with 6 grams freshly ground black pepper (~ 2 grams/kg), 6 grams garlic powder (~ 2 grams/kg), and 3 grams of marjoram (~ 1 gram/kg). I also mixed in 1/2 cup of nonfat dry milk powder and 1/2 cup of ice water. Hand mixed until very sticky, then loaded it into my stuffer.
Stuffed into medium hog casings. I couldn't find 38 mm casings at short notice, so just used my medium hog casing shorts, which vary between 32 - 36 mm.
Hung them on smoke sticks in a 100 deg smoker for 1 hour to dry before applying smoke. Smoked using oak and apple pellets in the AMNPS for 1/2 hour at 100 deg F, 1 hour at 120 deg F, and 1 hour at 140 deg F.
Here they are out of the smoker.
And into a 165 deg F water bath to poach for about 17 minutes for an IT of 153-155 deg F.
Cold water showered, then onto racks on the kitchen counter to bloom for 3 hours.
And ready to be refrigerated overnight.
Sliced one up this morning to try it out after it rested overnight. Yum!! Awesome flavor, should go great with braised cabbage for dinner tonight. My fat came out a little coarser than the picture posted by Shannon, so I'm not quite sure if my texture is perfect for Kielbasa or not. Any Kielbasa experts reading this, please let me know what you think about the texture.
So, yay! My first kielbasa. Thanks again to the experts who made this possible!
Thanks for reading, and Happy New Year all!