I just made my second attempt at making snack stick pepperoni. I ground my own beef, did my own seasoning, and mixed well. I stuffed the meat mix into hog casing and put in my smoker at 145 degrees for approx. 6 hrs. The flavor of my pepperoni is very good, but the casing is very tough. I did not do an ice water dunk when i removed the pepperoni from the smoker, Is that why my hog casing is so tough? I should add, I did refrigerate my mixed meat for 48 hrs before I stuffed it into the casing, and I also soaked the casing for a good 30 minutes prior to stuffing.