Meat Curing Salt , Insta Cure ?

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smokingrobert

Newbie
Original poster
Jan 3, 2017
6
10
I am just getting into smoking trying to get everything I need together before I start smoking anything . Was wondering what is the purpose of using Insta Cure in Slim Jims ?  
 
I am just getting into smoking trying to get everything I need together before I start smoking anything . Was wondering what is the purpose of using Insta Cure in Slim Jims ?  

Using cure for sausages and meat sticks is to make it safe for smoking at low temperatures and it also sets the color towards the signature pink you see in cured sausage.

Most of us start our sausages and sticks at 130 without smoke for an hour or 2, then bump the temp up to 140 and add smoke, every 30 minutes there after we bump up the temp 10 degrees until we get a pit temp of 170. Then allow the sausages/sticks to heat until they reach 150-152 internal. This process takes well over 4 hours most of the time and the rule for comminuted meat (ground) is 40-140 degrees within 4 hours so nasty things like botulism don't grow.
 
Although the cure is used as an antibacterial agent is is also used for flavour - as the Nitrite is responsible for giving the meat a distinct pink colour and bacon/ham flavour.
 
Although the cure is used as an antibacterial agent is is also used for flavour - as the Nitrite is responsible for giving the meat a distinct pink colour and bacon/ham flavour.

YEP, missed that one! Bacon would suck without the nitrite!

Thanks wade!
 
Here is some Cure info.

CURES - Cures are used in sausage products for color and flavor development as well as retarding the development of bacteria in the low temperature environment of smoked meats.

Salt and sugar both cure meat by osmosis. In addition to drawing the water from the food, they dehydrate and kill the bacteria that make food spoil. In general, though, use of the word "cure" refers to processing the meat with either sodium nitrite or sodium nitrate.

The primary and most important reason to use cures is to prevent BOTULISM POISONING (Food poisoning). It is very important that any kind of meat or sausage that will be cooked and smoked at low temperature be cured. To trigger botulism poisoning, the requirements are quite simple - lack of oxygen, the presence of moisture, and temperatures in range of 40-140° F. When smoking meats, the heat and smoke eliminates the oxygen. The meats have moisture and are traditionally smoked and cooked in the low ranges of 90 to 185° F. As you can see, these are ideal conditions for food poisoning if you don't use cures. There are two types of commercially used cures.

Prague Powder #1

Also called Insta-Cure and Modern Cure. Cures are used to prevent meats from spoiling when being cooked or smoked at low temperatures (under 200 degrees F). This cure is 1 part sodium nitrite (6.25%) and 16 parts salt (93.75%) and are combined and crystallized to assure even distribution. As the meat temperate rises during processing, the sodium nitrite changes to nitric oxide and starts to ‘gas out’ at about 130 degrees F. After the smoking /cooking process is complete only about 10-20% of the original nitrite remains. As the product is stored and later reheated for consumption, the decline of nitrite continues. 4 ounces of Prague powder #1 is required to cure 100 lbs of meat. A more typical measurement for home use is 1 level tsp per 5 lbs of meat. Mix with cold water, then mix into meat like you would mix seasonings into meat.
 
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