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Kitchen Aid for improvised meat mixer? You bet! Method/pics

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
After making several batches of jerky/snack sticks from ground beef (6lbs-12+lbs), I have found that I don't get the best distribution of seasoning/cure as evidenced by some "hot/spicy spots" in the finished product, even with my meticulous hand mixing methods.

Lastnight, I decided to dig out our 4.5 qt KA stand mixer and give it a try with the dough hook. It did a very good job with 3 runs of 2lbs each. I had to push the meat down off the side of the bowl until the meat picked up all of the cure and seasoning, then as the meat moisture was partially absorbed into the dry material, the meat would roll around down low as needed, and the mixer action was really pushing it all together quite well.

I stepped it up to a 3.7lb batch of salami mix, and found that it wasn't worth the effort to load it up that much. It took about twice as much time per pound to get it mixed well. The 2lb runs took about 3 minutes to get a good looking consitency of seasoning throughout the meat. When I loaded it up with 3.7lbs, it took over 10 minutes to get what I wanted.

One item to pay attention to is the flat spot in the bottom of the bowl, as some meat can settle into that area and not get a good mix. I just stopped the mixer and pushed that area back into the main ball of meat a couple times near the last minute of mixing.

That said, I have found a new friend for my future ground beef jerky sessions and chopped beef or pork. I can't justify buying a dedicated commercially built meat mixer just yet, and this will suffice for the smaller runs of 12 or 15 lbs that I will be doing.

A 2lb batch, with much needed extra bowl space...this is what you want:

The 3.7 lb overload...meat was climbing up over the disc of the dough hook towards the end of mixing:

I did a search and didn't find a similar discussion, so, I wanted to pass this method along to others who may be getting a bit deeper into the sausage or ground meat jerky scene, but don't want to have the extra equipment on hand (mixer) for small batches. This will help you to turn out a higher quality and more consistent product, and save loads of time and reduce the risks of contamination by hand-mixing (gloved or not).

I will definately be doing all of my meat mixing this way now...at least until I have the real deal.

Great smokes to all!

post #2 of 6
eric I posted this yesterday and your right on that is a great idea useing the kitchen aid to mix the meat together,no more ice cold hands.

I have a Kitchen Aid heavy duty mixer this is our second one (wore the first one out) We got the grinder attachment and the stuffer horn and we are off to the races.Sure its a bit slow but I have more time than money right now.This system has worked well for our needs but I showed a friend and his family uses a old van for a smoker and he thought we were crazy to do it this way.I can make smaller batches and have fun tweaking them.We generally make 10 lb.lots.So next Mothers day ,Christmas or birthday pick her up on she'll love it and so will you."
post #3 of 6
aahhh.. I love this forum... where else can you use the term "main ball of meat", and not have somebody size you up for a straight jacket.... heh-heh PDT_Armataz_01_12.gif
post #4 of 6
Make sure you keep everything cold....don't want the sausage mix to "Break"
post #5 of 6
Love my kitchen aid. use it all the time for everything I can.
post #6 of 6
I've used it before too, just got to be careful the wife isn't around when I do!
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