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Dried Polish in the Hopper: On Track?

oberst

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A bad head virus knocked me down this week, wiping out a 4 day deer and duck hunting plan, so I decided to plunge in with my first dried sausage; I picked the Marianski dried Polish recipe.  Used elk and pork, plus hand cut fat back bits.  My last batch of Polish semi dried came out a little dry, so I forced myself to add more fat; came out about 2 pounds of elk, 2 pounds of fatty butt, and 12 ounces of fat back.  It seems like a lot of fat but I like the commercial fatty dried sausages so went with it.  Here's the mix, which includes a big handful of chopped hot pepper cheese in the 4.4 pound batch.


I used big hog casings and here they are after almost 3 days of hanging in a cold basement room in the 40's, window open, with humidifier running wide open, getting me to about 70% humidity.  Keep in mind this is the first time I've done this.


At this point I'm thinking that to dry these down to a typical hard sausage is going to take some time.  So far, at 40 some degrees and high humidity they haven't shrunk much.  And, unlike other dried sausage recipes using cure#2, the initial hanging stage, rather than being at higher temps where "fermenting" seems like it would occur fine, this recipe calls for very low initial temperatures.  Well, at least I'm following the recipe.  Next stage is a day and a half of cold smoking, which is a chip shot with my MES and AMNPs setup, like the mailbox smoker talked about here before.


I hope I'm doing everything right at this point; after the cold smoke these go into a 50 degree humidified drying environment until down to 87%.  You can dry further, it says, and I'll have to see at that point.  I'll update after the first cut.  I chose this recipe because it looked pretty easy, and I thought I could best replicate the temp and humidity requirements for my first dried sausage.  Stayed with a fairly small batch on this first run.
 

SFLsmkr1

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You need to ferment at 75-80* before you dry the sausage. Big difference between semi dry and dry.

I dont follow the books, to many holes in the process and recipes.

GL
 

oberst

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Well shoot!  I initially hung this sausage in the low 50's for 65 hours with humidity around 65%.  Now what the recipe calls for at 35-42 degrees and 85-90% but that was as close as I could get it.  Cold smoked a day and a half  around 50 degrees.  Now going into a third day of drying, in the 50's with humidity from 55 to 70%.

Shrinkage after the cold smoke is 8-9% and the links look good and smell fine.

Key question now;  is there any harm in letting these things dry for several more days?  Will the lack of a warmer initial ferment have really negative consequences?  Appreciate input on this!!
 

szynka

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What you made and what the recipe in Marianski's book reads are leagues apart, in fact far far apart.    Your meats,  and procedure are not even close.  And pepper cheese?  And next you'll be telling us that it is not a good recipe.
 

oberst

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10 days of drying in the low 50 degrees range after the day and a half cold smoke and my moisture is down to 78%.  Marianski calls for going down to 87%, and beyond that if one prefers.  Take a look folks; I'm encouraged!  This is my best looking sausage effort to date.


Of course that's hardly the bottom line.  Recall from above, I was nervous about the fat content, as I forced myself to add more chopped back fat than I was comfortable with, but only because earlier efforts had turned out drier than I liked, even though I thought I had plenty of fat.  (this recipe: 2 pounds of elk, 2 pounds of butt, 12 oz of fat back) I cut one of the pieces above, and indeed, it looks like too much fat:


I took a big gulp and tried a piece.  Hmmm, better than I thought. In a while I had eaten a whole link; it did not taste too fatty!  Go figure.  It did taste a little salty however and next time I might cut that back some.  Recall that I threw a big handful of pepper cheese in this batch; don't think I'd do that next time.  The richer flavor of this dried sausage doesn't need it, and I can't really taste in the batch anyway.  Cheese I've had in stix  has really worked well, but didn't seem to here.  I played the bit of extra saltiness to advantage by adding cucumber, tomato slices, etc to my crackers.  Usually I'd put a little salt on those but now I don't need to.


Most of the drying is done I think; I only lost one gram of moisture last nite, where I was losing 3-4 grams of water a day per link.  I think I'll let it dry a couple more days before wrapping.  I'm pretty excited about this result; my first successful dried sausage and it turned out very good.  I'm confident that more experience and paying attention to form advice will help create some of the knock-out dried sausage examples I see other folks doing!
 

SFLsmkr1

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10 days of drying in the low 50 degrees range after the day and a half cold smoke and my moisture is down to 78%.  Marianski calls for going down to 87%, and beyond that if one prefers.  Take a look folks; I'm encouraged!  This is my best looking sausage effort to date.


Of course that's hardly the bottom line.  Recall from above, I was nervous about the fat content, as I forced myself to add more chopped back fat than I was comfortable with, but only because earlier efforts had turned out drier than I liked, even though I thought I had plenty of fat.  (this recipe: 2 pounds of elk, 2 pounds of butt, 12 oz of fat back) I cut one of the pieces above, and indeed, it looks like too much fat:


I took a big gulp and tried a piece.  Hmmm, better than I thought. In a while I had eaten a whole link; it did not taste too fatty!  Go figure.  It did taste a little salty however and next time I might cut that back some.  Recall that I threw a big handful of pepper cheese in this batch; don't think I'd do that next time.  The richer flavor of this dried sausage doesn't need it, and I can't really taste in the batch anyway.  Cheese I've had in stix  has really worked well, but didn't seem to here.  I played the bit of extra saltiness to advantage by adding cucumber, tomato slices, etc to my crackers.  Usually I'd put a little salt on those but now I don't need to.


Most of the drying is done I think; I only lost one gram of moisture last nite, where I was losing 3-4 grams of water a day per link.  I think I'll let it dry a couple more days before wrapping.  I'm pretty excited about this result; my first successful dried sausage and it turned out very good.  I'm confident that more experience and paying attention to form advice will help create some of the knock-out dried sausage examples I see other folks doing!
Heck it looks good. Dont matter if its not close to the book recipe.
 

crankybuzzard

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Heck it looks good. Dont matter if its not close to the book recipe.
I agree, it looks great to me, I'd sure dig into it!

As for the naysayer above, he's like a seagull, flies in craps all over folks and then heads out.  When he starts posting some of his perfect and by the book, up to Polish Law sausages, I might consider paying attention...
 
Last edited:

SFLsmkr1

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I agree, it looks great to me, I'd sure dig into it!

As for the naysayer above, he's like a seagull, flies in craps all over folks and then heads out.  When he starts posting some of his perfect and by the book, up to Polish Law sausages, I might consider paying attention...
HAHA



 

hoity toit

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You need to ferment at 75-80* before you dry the sausage. Big difference between semi dry and dry.

I dont follow the books, to many holes in the process and recipes.

GL
Nepas, how long would you ferment ? 24-36 hrs ?
 

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