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Need help Setting up cure fridge

mr crab

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I have a brand new 3.2cu.ft. thermo electric mini fridge. It is holding a pretty steady temp of 50deg. I was thinking about trying my first project (lonzino) by just adding an Eva dry dessicant pack. Anyone try a simple setup like this? Or should I just go ahead and get an inkbird with humidity control and an electric dehumidifier?
 

bradger

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I would buy a cheap cut and give it a shot, like maybe buy one get one free deal.
 

daveomak

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A pan of distilled water with the appropriate salt, will hold humidity fairly constant..
Salt will hold at about 76% Rh... I would use a coarse rock salt..... For Great charcuterie, around 80% Rh is the target and +/- 4 months to finish the process.. Temp+/- 55F is the target also...

Humidity Chart 1 001.jpg
 

Lonzinomaker

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I used a salt bath like Daveomak for several of my first Lonzino. My first mistake was to dry to fast. You want to let moisture move from center of meat to outside. If it dries to fast you will get a hard rind and center won't dry.
 

smokeaddict

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A pan of distilled water with the appropriate salt, will hold humidity fairly constant..
Salt will hold at about 76% Rh... I would use a coarse rock salt..... For Great charcuterie, around 80% Rh is the target and +/- 4 months to finish the process.. Temp+/- 55F is the target also...

View attachment 406346
Daveomac,
I know this is an old post, may I ask a question ? I am using a humidifier in the ageing fridge it is presenting a daily proble. The fridge isn't frost free, has a panel at the back which is the source of cooling. There is a fan also to create air flow. The panel frosts up every few hours, and eventually the back frost up, the fridge enters defrost mode and the temperature rises to 12 ºC, 54º F. That worries me. I have tried the salt pan method, without success, the RH doesn't go above 50%, too low. Using fine ground Himalayan Salt, not rock, could that be why it didn't work ? Do you have experience using salt, which form, how wet is the salt ?

Appreciate any advice,
Gus
 

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daveomak

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Turn the thermostat up to about 50-55F.....
Turn off the humidifier....
Get some rock salt and fill the pan to the top.... you want BIG salt crystals.... add distilled water to the salt pan so you have exposed salt... about 1/2" thick layer of the salt exposed.. Over time, the salt pan will come to equilibrium at about 75% relative humidity.... So it says in the fine print...

The cooling coils will battle the salt for humidity... The ice you see is humidity that has been removed...

As the salt removes humidity, it will STOP and give humidity back to the chamber when it is below 75%...

You need very little air flow... Opening the fridge door once per day should be enough... You can probably turn off the fan...
 

daveomak

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Temperature Control There is a problem with the refrigerator’s temperature range as its thermostat is made to control temperatures between 0-4º C (32-40º F). Such temperatures are not needed during fermenting and drying sausages. Fortunately, there is a commonly available device called a line voltage thermostat. It is an electronic temperature control or rather a combination of a temperature sensors, switches and electronic controls that can transform an ordinary refrigerator into a wonderful drying chamber. It is made by a few companies (see Links of Interest). Line Voltage Thermostat - Single Stage Fig. 20.3 Electronic temperature control in cooler mode. A refrigerator is unplugged from the outlet and is then plugged into the temperature control which is plugged into the electrical outlet. The refrigerator’s thermostat is not controlling the temperature anymore and is taken over by the temperature sensor in the controller, which is inserted into the refrigerator. There is no need to drill a hole as the refrigerator door has rubber insulation and the sensor’s cable is thin. In short terms, the microprocessor monitors the temperature through the sensor and when

Marianski, Stanley. Home Production of Quality Meats and Sausages (Kindle Locations 9586-9598). Bookmagic LLC. Kindle Edition.
the temperature is warmer than the set point, the processor will energize the internal relay (switch). This allows the refrigerator to draw the current from the controller and start cooling. The drawing is not to scale and the typical unit is about: 6.5” x 2.7” x 2.5”. These units can control coolers, heaters or any electrical devices. The unit depicted in Fig. 20.1 is a single stage control which means that it can control only one device at a time. A line voltage thermostat set to “cooling mode” can only decrease temperature lower than the temperature that remains outside the refrigerator. There are instances when the temperature inside the chamber must be higher: Fast fermented sausages made with starter cultures which require fermentation temperatures of around 86 -113º F, 30-45º C. Drying chamber is located in a cool climate where temperatures are below 68º F, 20º C for a larger part of the year. Under such circumstances the same line voltage thermostat can be combined with a heater and used in the heating mode. In such a case the temperature control is switched to “heating mode”, the refrigerator is disconnected and the heater is plugged into the temperature control. The refrigerator becomes just a drying chamber.

Marianski, Stanley. Home Production of Quality Meats and Sausages (Kindle Locations 9598-9610). Bookmagic LLC. Kindle Edition.
 

smokeaddict

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Turn the thermostat up to about 50-55F.....
Turn off the humidifier....
Get some rock salt and fill the pan to the top.... you want BIG salt crystals.... add distilled water to the salt pan so you have exposed salt... about 1/2" thick layer of the salt exposed.. Over time, the salt pan will come to equilibrium at about 75% relative humidity.... So it says in the fine print...

The cooling coils will battle the salt for humidity... The ice you see is humidity that has been removed...

As the salt removes humidity, it will STOP and give humidity back to the chamber when it is below 75%...

You need very little air flow... Opening the fridge door once per day should be enough... You can probably turn off the fan...
Hmm Daveo,
I would be worried about trying to age beef in a fridge set to 50-55 º. Nowhere in my reserarch about ageing states those temps. I will use the salt method though,
Thank You,

Gus
 

daveomak

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daveomak

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Lomo Embuchado Lomo embuchado is Spanish dry-cured pork loin.
The average weight of a pork loin is 12-14 lbs. Meat Metric US pork loin 5 - 6 kg 11 - 13 lbs. Ingredients for 1 kg of meat: salt 28 g 5 tsp Cure #2 6 g 1 tsp sugar 2.5 g ½ tsp pepper 8 g 4 tsp Spanish paprika 6 g 3 tsp garlic powder 2.0 g 1 tsp Instructions: 1. Remove all bones and trim down the fat until you reach the lean meat. 2. Mix salt, Cure #2 and all ingredients together. 3. Add little water to the mixture and rub the wet mixture into the loin. 4. Place into a plastic bag and leave for 7-10 days in refrigerator. 5. Remove loin from refrigerator and brush off the excess salt. Stuff into synthetic or collagen casings. 6. Hang loin at 46º F (8º C), 72-80% humidity for one month. This is the salt equalization stage. 7. Dry loins for 3 weeks at 68-72º F (20-22º C). Moisture removal and flavor development takes place at this stage. 8. Loin is ready when it loses about 40% of its original weight.

Marianski, Stanley. Home Production of Quality Meats and Sausages (Kindle Locations 13690-13691). Bookmagic LLC. Kindle Edition.

Marianski, Stanley. Home Production of Quality Meats and Sausages (Kindle Locations 13656-13690). Bookmagic LLC. Kindle Edition.
 

smokeaddict

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What recipe are you using ???
Please post it here..... Dave







...
Dave,
I am ageing whole muscle, rib eye, bone in, to be trimmed as steaks. Are you thinking of salami, or Coppa, or some such charcuterie ?
Gus
 

daveomak

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Well, that's a whole new deal.... You should have stated that in your opening post....
You are NOT using 0.25% cure#2, nor are you using a 3% salt on the meat...

Sausage Maker has collagen sheets that "PREVENT" case hardening... They control the evaporation process....
Thin yet durable Collagen Sheets are used to wrap whole-muscle cuts for smoking, netting, aging or dry curing. Traditionally used for making Capicola and smoking ham. Adheres to meat and allows for breath-ability while drying and smoke penetration for adding smokey flavor. Sheets contain tiny perforations for permeability.

Dry Aging Collagen Sheets, 5 pcs (22" x 29")
17-1850-2T.jpg

I would wrap in collagen and net with elastic netting.... 3-4 weeks, or longer, at 34-36F in the refer...





 

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