(the finished product)
Made some 'Nduja, and out from the chamber! Aged for about 3 months. This was made with pork belly and pork jowl ground once through a 12mm plate, then once through a 7mm plate. Spicing was simple:
-Sicilian sea salt
-Calabrian hot & sweet pepper powder
-Calabrian hot & sweet pepper paste
-Calabrian hot pepper flakes
-Bactoferm B-LC-007 Starter Culture
-Hog Middle Caps
(stuffed 'Nduja in the fermenter)
All Calabrian products equalled 22% the weight of the meat, keeping with what is done in Calabria (ratios always between 20-30% depending on the producer). Fermented with B-LC-007 for all the added benefits of that culture blend at 68-72F for about 48 hours. The pH was then taken to ensure a pH of 5.3 or below was met. pH value read 5.17 at 24 into fermentation at about 71° on average. I pulled it to cool down in the reach in, and will smoke once it firms up a bit. It will probably drop a little more in pH as well from any ambient heat put off from the Amaze'n tube...
(my "fermenter"...an insulated bread proofer)
After fermentation the 'Nduja was cold smoked with Beechwood for 15 hours, and then it was hung to dry for the time previously mentioned.
(post cold smoking with beechwood pellets)
Flavor is unreal!!! Already eaten most of it, and getting ready to make another batch. The heat and flavor of these peppers are so unique. It is like a slow burn, followed by a complexity that is hard to describe. I made this one very hot, but you can always adjust the pepper percentages based on your personal preference. More sweet than hot etc... Amazing!
I also jarred some using a kinda gangster sealing method I figured out... I took the finished 'Nduja and added 15% nice olive oil to it, then mixed it well. I then spooned it into the jar (sanitized the jar first), and dropped the pressure in the chamber. As the chamber vented suction pulled the jar lid down to form an air tight seal for prolonged shelving. There is cure #2 in the 'Nduja, so storing in this anaerobic environment I see no different than a casing. This is why I didn't add heat to make this product. Some manufacturers use heat to pasteurize it, but I do not feel the need to since: I sanitized the jar, it has cure #2, checked the water activity of this mixture on Thursday in the lab and it read 0.8637, low pH of 5.07 - and so all these on top of each other is why I feel it is safe to do it this way. Now it is shelf stable, and in an awesome jar without heat pasteurization that alters the texture (in my opinion)!