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Beef cheeks Daveomac this is for you

Discussion in 'Curing' started by Holly2015, Jun 2, 2018.

  1. Holly2015

    Holly2015 Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    So after our beef cheek discussion the other day I stopped at Walmart and bought a pack. I was fortunate in that I got a whole beef cheek. Unfortunately at least 52% of it was fat and connective tissue. After trimming and still lots of silver skin on the main piece I was left with 502g of usable product out of . I have decided to cure it like a guanchalai but with only salt, sugar, pepper and cure #2.

    Ended up doing:

    2.75% salt .
    0.25% cure # 2
    1% sugar and some black pepper.

    Starting total weight 1061.4 grams or 2.34lbs

    Out of the pack looks like 1 whole cheek. Not sure f this is the inside or the outside of the cut.


    Piece flipped over. As you can see lots of fat and connective tissue.


    Muscles separated from the fat.


    Pic of the other side. Fat going to the soap making pile.


    Meat seasoned with cure, salt, sugar and black pepper. Into the fridge for 5 days to cure. Thickest part of the meat is maybe an inch.

    In a few days I'll hang the pieces in the curing chamber for 3 or 4 weeks. I have no idea what I'm going to do with them from there but I'll figure something out.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2018
  2. nanuk

    nanuk Smoking Fanatic ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    25% cure #2?

    perhaps a typo?
  3. Holly2015

    Holly2015 Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Yes meant to type .25%
  4. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    WOW !!! Nice looking cheek... I just wrote to Modernist Pantry about RM MooGloo and charcuterie... I'm not sure they will answer my 2nd question... First was, Can I add RM, salt, and cure#2 together to bind hunks of beef cheeks... Pretty much a "NO" as the other ingredients may effect the gluing process... They said "Glue first, then cure"... I asked 2nd, about pathogens on the inside and effective destruction after acceptable Aw and salt and cure penetration.. Me thinks that will not get a response.. Too much liability.... BUT ... I did order some RM... be here next week...
  5. Holly2015

    Holly2015 Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Well I took the cheek of the cure today rinsed with cold water, patted dry with clean paper towels weighted and tagged the cheek. I am going to try mold harvesting on this one. So after I hanged the cheek in the curing chamber I put on clean disposable rubber gloves and gently handled one of the bresaola's I inoculated last week and currently has a nice thick layer of mold on it. With some of the mold transferred to the gloves I then rubbed down the cheek.

    If this works I'll be amazed because of a couple reasons.

    1. I am not using the inoculation chamber to let the mold establish. Not that I don't want too but I don't have time. I am leaving for a motorcycle trip and don't have time to dedicate to it.

    2. I not sure this is a good way to transfer mold or if I should have rehydrated the harvested mold and sprayed it on. Time will tell.

    Once I get back I am going to do some mold harvesting experiments to see if I can find a viable way.

    What I do have going for me is I have decided to bump the humidity level of the curing chamber from 70 % to 80% so the elevated humidity should help.
  6. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I think your method will be successful... Especially increasing the humidity...
  7. Holly2015

    Holly2015 Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Color me amazed!

    I peeked in to the curing chamber this evening to up date some Lonzino pictures and realized the mold transferred to the cheek had bloomed beautifully. When I took pictures this morning I did not notice any mold on the cheek.

  8. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Success is yours !!!!!!!!!
    1 Great job.jpg
  9. nanuk

    nanuk Smoking Fanatic ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    OK, I'll be the first to say it... those look fugly!

    I can't wait to hear how they taste!

    What taste are you expecting? I mean, what will they taste like being so lean?
  10. nanuk

    nanuk Smoking Fanatic ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I just noticed the moldy sausages in the back of the chamber.

    is that what a real good mold coverage is supposed to look like? that looks thick and 100% coverage.
  11. Holly2015

    Holly2015 Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    The cheeks re supposed to be really beefy flavored. Not sure what the final product will be like but the cheeks actually do have a good bit of very fine marbling. I just excited that the mold harvesting was a success.

    I have a Lonzino and a couple of Bresaola threads (that's what you are seeing in the background) that show through it growth stages. I am happy when mold is at a talcum like consistency with 100% coverage and around 1/16" thick.
    nanuk likes this.
  12. nanuk

    nanuk Smoking Fanatic ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    That would be considered a 100% successful inoculation!

    one day soon, I want to try dry cured products.
  13. browneyesvictim

    browneyesvictim Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Oh wow! I missed this one, but I'm in now!

    @daveomak - Did you get your Moo Glue RM and have a chance to play with it yet? I've done 2 boneless hams so far with it. I'm definitely interested in your experience with it if you used it on cheeks yet. did I miss your post?
  14. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    browneyesvictim likes this.
  15. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    My other product got here today... Ordered from "The Craft Butchers Pantry" .. https://www.butcherspantry.com/ The owner is a member here... Evan Brady...... I read where he used it in one of his products and the flavor enhancement was awesome... FREEZE UPON ARRIVAL ....




    TEXEL® DCM-1 Whole Muscle Color & Flavor Development Culture (New Lot Available!)
    TEXTEL® DCM-1 is a maturation starter culture that has been freeze dried, and specifically designed for developing more flavor and color in a cured meat application. This culture was designed by Danisco for use in the production of Speck, dry hams, etc., but is not limited to those whole muscles. The strains of bacteria within the bag are Staphylococcus carnosus and Stapylococcus vitulinus. Both of these strains secrete high amounts of nitrate reductase at the generally below 40ºF curing temperature, rapidly develops good color stability, enzymatically reduces the amount of residual nitrate in your product, produces strong catalase activity (which neutralizes peroxides that form during drying), and lastly produces good amounts of proteolytic and lipolytic activity (which is not only a precursor to flavor development, but aids in a great aroma producing action as well).

    For use with whole muscle products, it is recommended by Danisco's meat specialist to use one whole bag per ham if making a Prosciutto or Speck, and to add the bag in an evenly dispersed way throughout the salt measured for curing. Based on the general weight of hams being between 25-30# dry weight we can estimate how much of the pack to use with smaller muscles like Coppa, Fiocco, and Culatello. You can use the whole bag with these smaller muscles, but it is a good recommendation to think of the bag in quarters. If you want to use with a Coppa, your options are to a) use the whole bag, or b) use a quarter of the bag. Both will give you good results! Measure out how much salt you need to use (we prefer equilibrium curing), then add the culture and disperse before applying to the muscle. We are working on developing percentages, but as of now it is hard as the ratios vary on product - so stay tuned as we work to get a streamlined percentage of use for whole muscle. It is fine to cure under vacuum (if you prefer) as these bacteria are falcultative anaerobes; meaning they thrive and are still alive in the absence of oxygen.

    If you want to add to a salami paste, or any ground paste the ratio is 10g (1bag) per 100Kg (220#) of meat. This use is 0.01% of the weight of the meat.

    If you want to add to a brine, the ratio is 10g (1bag) per 50L of brine. The strains of bacteria are salt tolerant up to 16% salt in brine, so make sure you make your concentrations accordingly as to not hurdle the growth of the bacteria.