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New MES Owner

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by cruiser rod, Oct 17, 2013.

  1. cruiser rod

    cruiser rod Smoke Blower

    I finally snaged one off of Craigslist. It's a green 30" digital Masterbuilt that has the NWTF logo (National Wild Turkey Federation) on the front and the digital display for $120. The guy said he only used it 5 times but it looks like it was only used once or twice. This is my second smoker, my first being a Big Chief Smokehouse which I will still use and is definitely broken in. This weekend I am trying my first attempt at Venison Kielbasa. This is the main reason I bought it. So if anyone has any helpful suggestions please don't hold back.
  2. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Epic Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Great deal on the smoker. Lay out your recipe and planned procedure and we would be happy to help you and make suggestions if needed...JJ
  3. cruiser rod

    cruiser rod Smoke Blower

    I picked this recipe up off one of the post here on the forum and made some modifications to the recipe ingredients. I ordered a thermometer but I may be winging it without it because it hasn't arrived yet. I've read some different procedures with starting out with a lower temp and gradually raising it. I guess that is one of my concerns. Please let me know what you think.

    5 lbs Ground Pork Shoulder

    5 lbs Ground Venison

    2 Cups non fat dry milk

    3 Tbs Kosher Salt

    2 tsp Prague Powder No. 1

    1 Tbs Sugar

    1 Tbs Black pepper

    2 Tbs finely chopped fresh garlic

    1 Heaping tsp Marjoram

    2 Cups Ice Water

    Assuming all meat has been ground, mix all the above ingredients minus the dry milk and the meat, in the ice cold water. After mixed in well, add to the meat and add dry milk. Mix well and proceed to stuff. Let hang somewhere for 30 minutes or so until casings are dry. I smoke them at 165 degrees until I get an internal temp of 152 degrees according to Ryteks book. Remove and give them a good shower of cold water until internal temps drop to 110 Degrees. Hang at room temp until you get a nice mahogany bloom, but I would not go past an hour. 30 minutes should do.

    Temperature is VERY Important

    I can't over-emphasize the importance of temperature control in the smoking phase of sausage making. If you get this part right, everything else falls into place easily.
    • Keep the temperature inside the sausage smoker between 160 and 165 degrees F.Max.
    • If you try to smoke at any higher temperatures, the fat content in your sausage will start to melt and ooze out of the casing.
      Fat is important. Not only does it add to the flavor of your sausage, it acts as a binding agent. Once it starts to melt, your sausage will become dry, crumbly, and much less tasty.
    • Take your sausage out of the smoker when it reaches an internal temperature of 152 degrees F.
    • This could take many hours, depending on how full your smoker is. Don't Guess. Use a meat thermometer (I like an instant read digital with an alarm) to monitor this part of the meat smoking process.
    Adding the Smoke
    • Fill the chip pan of your smoker with wood chips or sawdust that has been soaked in water for 30 minutes and then drained. Increase the heat to 160 degrees and close the dampers on the smoker.
    • As a rule of thumb, I like to generate smoke for 3.5 to 4 hours if I'm using fruitwood. In my current smoker, that takes about 3 pans of soaked wood chips.
      With the stronger flavored smoke generated by hickory and mesquite, I find I'm better off stopping the smoke after 3 hours.
    • Too much smoke flavor is far worse than not enough. Over smoking will cause your sausage to taste acrid and bitter. Under smoking will just result in a less intense smoked flavor, but the sausage will still be very good.
    • Once you have attained the nice brown color and flavor that you want (3-4 hours), stop the smoke and continue to heat the sausage in the smoker unill it reaches the 152 degree internal temperature.
  4. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Epic Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    The recipe is accurate and the use of the Cure allows for a variety of smoking schedules. You can smoke the whole time as described at 165° or start at 100°F and raise the smoker temp 10° every hour to 165°F. As the author pointed out, you should give credit to whom you borrowed from, temp monitoring is important for the best outcome. If it is not possible to wait for your ordered therm, at least get a Cheapo Meat Therm from the grocery store to monitor your internal temps. With the cure this monitoring is not so important for safety as it is for maintaining quality. There is not much that can be done with sausage that has had the fat melt out other than Chili...JJ
  5. cruiser rod

    cruiser rod Smoke Blower

    After I re-serched to name the poster that I got this from. I found it was posted by 'Meat Hunter" and was taken from Ryteks book as I somewhat mentioned. My apologies for not giving the poster his due credit.

    Could you please explain or de-code what you mean by "There is not much that can be done with sausage that has had the fat melt out other than Chili…JJ"?
  6. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Epic Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    You had commented that you had ordered a Thermometer but it had not arrived so you were going to wing it without. As the temp rises in the sausage it can get too hot and the Fat melts and separates from the meat and pools at the lowest point. The remaining meat now has the texture of Sand. I have had sausage like this when my Students didn't monitor the IT. It is not a pleasant eating sausage but the crumbly meat can be removed from the casing and made into Chili. Granted this happens around 180° so careful monitoring of the Smoker temp and sausage temp is important. If you are really confident in what you are using to monitor the smoker temp, keep it at 160°F than you have a better chance of finishing the smoke, but the therms that come with or on the smokers are notorious for be inaccurate. For instance, my MES 40 will display 165° in the smoker but my proven accurate Maverick 732 show swings from 150 to 180°F. I just figured I would offer an alternative until your new therm arrives...JJ
  7. cruiser rod

    cruiser rod Smoke Blower

    I get it now, thanks. I do have a cheap thermostat I use for cooking turkeys, I'll use that. So, if I understand the cook and fat, raising the temp in hourly increments would tend not to melt the fat as quick as setting the temp at 160° until I reached my desired IT? Also, what is your opinion on how much smoke and will I get a good smoke starting with a temp of 110°?
  8. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Epic Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    It is not so much that setting and forgetting at 160°F will cause a Fat Out, it is many MES smokers can swing higher easily from overshooting the set point when the coil cycles. It is just safer to move up more slowly. The slow raising of temp allows for greater smoke penetration. I smoke the whole time because using an AMNPS gives a perfect amount of TBS and I am not outside feeding Chips every 30 minutes. Check it out, makes the MES work at it's best...JJ

  9. I prefer to smoke for 4 or 5 hours then poach in my turkey oven to finish temp. Also helps keep the cases unwrinkled.
  10. cruiser rod

    cruiser rod Smoke Blower

    Can you explain ANMPS & TBS?
  11. TBS = Thin Blue Smoke.  As opposed to nasty white or black smoke.

    AMNPS = A-Maze-N-Pellet-Smoker.  It's a metal maze device used to burn pellets (or sawdust) to add smoke to a cook.  Todd is a sponsor here and often runs specials for members using a coupon code.  http://www.amazenproducts.com/Default.asp
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2013
  12. cruiser rod

    cruiser rod Smoke Blower

    Thanks, appreciate the help! As a Newbe I'm not up to speed with some of these acronyms but I do learn fast. Thanks again!
  13. Not a prob my friend. We all started at the beginning.
  14. cruiser rod

    cruiser rod Smoke Blower

    Yes we did and that is were I started here! Thanks Again!!!
  15. Have MES 40 with window. Had it for a while but getting ready to smoke first turkey. Most recommend cooking them at higher temps, like 325 to 350, but the MES only goes to 275. Whats the best way to smoke turkey in the MES 40?:grilling_smilie:
  16. chiefwej

    chiefwej Smoke Blower

    I smoked my first turkey last year in my MES40. I brined it first, then used a beer can turkey rack ( I bought on Amazon) to do it just like beer can chicken. Set the temp to its max (275) and I monitored the internal temp with two probes. I was amazed at how quickly it was done. Tasted great, very juicy with just the right smoky flavor added.

    BTW: I used orange juice added to by brine mix, a honey and OJ concentrate glaze and put OJ in the beer can rack. It was a great complement to the smoky taste.