freezing cured raw meat mixture for stuffing/smoking later?

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tom ryle

Original poster
Dec 12, 2013
Pacific Northwest
Hi all,

I'm new to the forum and a longtime subscriber of Jeff's newsletter.  You can read my intro in my initial post if you'd like.

After poking around, it's clear that there are some hard-core meat men here and I can't wait to dig in and share some of my smoking adventures.

Ok, back to my question.  I recently ran into a scenario that I need some expert advice on.  During my last batch of snack sticks I ran out of casings (and time) so I vacuum packed the remaining ~5 lbs of meat mixture and froze it since it would be a week or more before I could finish.  I didn't know what else to do since the meat already had cure added and was already in the fridge for 24 hours prior to stuffing.  Well that week turned into months so my question is: can I thaw that cured meat, stuff it and smoke/cook it as normal?

I tried the same thing once and had a minor binding problem. I don't know for sure if was because the sausage was a few month old or if I did something else to cause the crumbly sausage. When I'm making sausage in the winter I accumulate small bags of different kinds of sausage left over from my stuffer. I've been making pork shots out of these and consider them a treat.
As woodcutter said you will have a grainy texture if the meat has broken down with freezer burn. I have read from others that cure will breakdown over time in the freezer but I havent found any information on it. If you vacuum sealed and prevented freezer burn I would say go ahead and use it....... Its only 5 lbs
Not to hyjack the tread.  I made something simalar to your pork shots before.  I used a store bought smoked sausage.  Wrapped bacon around it, put a couple of slices of jared jalapeno peppers on top, add some brown sugar.  either bake or grill them.  They are good!
I was in that same boat last summer........ran out of casings. I froze the meat........let it thaw very slowly in the fridge two weeks later.......had to add a small amount of water and a quick re-mix......stuffed and smoked. Turned out fine.

Thanks all - good to know a couple of you have done this before.  Bkleinsmid, I'll follow your suggestion and check the moisture and add water if needed prior to stuffing.

Woodcutter, thanks for the tip on those pork shots!  What a great idea - dang those pics look really good!  I usually make a couple formed logs and smoke up the stuffer extras to add to my lunches during the week.  They are kinda ugly so I keep them for my self.  I've made similar mini bacon wrapped, dry rubbed deer & elk steak appetizers that are quite tasty on the grill.  

Thanks again for the help!

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