Old world recipes and new school tech

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by Travis Wiper, Dec 5, 2017.

  1. i joined up because I'm looking for some information on a build I'd like to do. I have heavy interest in old world meat curing traditions that do not require refrigeration. I'd like to build a smoke house that can do both hot and cold smoke. Also, was wondering how the curing gurus are and which forum I might want to be looking. An avid fisherman and hunter I always have game to experiment with. I've got a doe's hindquarters in salt now getting ready for a 30 day cure. Any advice would be great!!! I am particularly interested in foods and recipes that once prepared require no refrigeration i.e. Biltong. Thank you in advance
     
  2. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Do you plan on using cure #1... 6.25% sodium nitrite in curing ?? or cure #2.. nitrite and nitrate....
     
  3. I was originally going to use celery powder but cannot find a good quantity for a reasonable price. Will grow my own and dehydrate in the future..... I wasn't going to use any. Just salt and do proscuitto style. Also incorporate a sunga after it's been salted. Was going to hang in my basement next to open window with a humidifier going. It will stay about 50f with an RH of 60 ish..... never done this and really don't want to screw it up as it took me 11 hunts on state land with a bow and a shotgun to get this fat doe. I hate having to use a processor and am in the longer term process of procureing all needed equipment and building a designated butchering, curing, aging area; along with a smoke house. Would like a combi of cold and hot smoke. I like to keep it as old school as possible. Didn't know if I should insulate and put flashing in or not. sorry I digress..... so I was going to use 2tsp of cure #1 "nitrite" for an 11.5lb venison ham (shank included)
     
  4. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    May I suggest a humidity of nearer 75-80% to avoid case hardening... Also, if you are not planning on cooking the meat, maybe a thin slice or six with a beverage and aged cheese, using cure#2 will provide very long term pathogen protection..
    Celery powder is not all it's hyped up to be... Chef JimmyJ can enlighten us all...
     
  5. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Celery Powder, especially making your own, is too inconsistent for home use and you have no way to measure the in going amount. Commercial users source and test celery juice/powder for Nitrate content for safe and repeatable results. This ain't cheap and again impossible at home. There are some sources like The Sausage Maker that sells small quantities, with specific directions for use, as it is not interchangeable with Cure #1 or Cure #2. To put some perspective on peoples irrational fear of the " processed " Nitrite in Cure #1. With Cure #1, you are adding 6.25% nitrite of 0.25% Cure #1 based on the weight of the meat, pretty small amount. Cook that meat and thermal breakdown reduced that Nitrite to about 1% of 0.25% or only a few Parts Per Million for each gram of, say, bacon you eat. Next to nothing! The bulk of Nitrite we swallow comes in the Saliva the body makes, the rest comes from the Vegetables we eat. The Lettuce on your BLT contains several hundred times more Nitrite from Nitrate than if you put a QUARTER POUND OF BACON, cooked weight, on your sandwich! Munch on a couple Ribs of Celery while making Bacon Cheeseburgers for supper and you just ate several THOUSAND times more Nitrite from Nitrate then a HALF POUND OF BACON on each burger! Cure #1 has been around over 100 years, Great Grandpa used it, that is pretty Old School in my book. There is also a HUGE difference between the salt only, open air, curing of a Hog Leg into Prosciutto or making Biltong, and trying to make a salt only sausage like Salami or Soppressata...JJ
     
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  6. I'm not so much concerned about the nitrates/nitrites..... I just wasn't going to use any. Just salt and spices. Am I risking death?

    I did not know cure 1 or 2 had a shelf life. I do know #2 is nitrates and take longer to breakdown.....

    Would it be better to brine the leg? Or just keep it in salt and cure.... also is there a standard cure ratio, by the pound; for a venison ham.


    Seems to be very difficult to find information about all this stuff. Everything on the internet keeps pointing me back to this website.

    Thank you all for your passion and knowledge. Just a noob trying to understand. I have been in the restaurant industry for a very long time and am a very knowledgeable chef and avid outdoorsman. The one thing I lack is charcuterie experience/knowledge in cold smoking and hot smoking and curing. A native texan for 32 years I have BBQing down. Looking to take lessons in a new arena
     
  7. Dave yes, thank you for your advice on RH. I don't know if I can get it that high with a humidifier.... would it be better to hang it attic?
     
  8. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Cure#2 is ~6.25% nitrite and nitrate is dependent on the manufacturer... Nitrite for immediate control and nitrate for long term storage control... meats cured with #2 are not intended to be cooked.. Some manufacturers analyze their cures after manufacturing to determine the actual amounts of the ingredients..

    Butcher and Packer DQ curing salt.jpg cure #2 3.jpg Cure2 2.jpg
     
  9. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Old world recipes are overrated.. Folks died unless they had access to salt that was contaminated with nitrates... Pete was using the "contaminated" salt and had repeat customers... Ralph had "clean" salt... soon, Ralph had no repeat customers.. Pete had the market cornered...
     
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  10. I got some #2 on the way! Hydrometer in basement, and getting a humidifier.... how many tap of #2 do I use for an 11.5lb venison ham.... (won't be smoking it unless build is done in less than 25 days)
     
  11. *tsp.

    Is there a common salt and cure ratio per lb of meat?
     
  12. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

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  13. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    1 tsp. per 5#'s of stuff... same for #1 and #2... Most sites recommend a 2.75% salt addition (minimum for bacteria control) for dry aging/curing so your initial salt addition is 3%... 0.25% for the cure and 2.75% in Kosher/Pickling salt..

    It is not expected that an Eskimo will cure seal or whale meat with nitrites. They would rather pound their meat pieces until thin, and dry them in windy and cold conditions that most of us will find impossible to duplicate. It also goes without saying that it takes longer to remove moisture from the inside of a 18 lb. ham than a 2 oz. strip of meat. More Nitrate can be safely applied to a meat that will dry for a year as the Nitrates dissipate slowly in time. For this reason you can apply 625 ppm of sodium nitrite to a dry product and only 156 ppm to a regular smoked sausage. The salt is applied at around 6% to a country ham which needs plenty of protection, about 3% for a dry fermented sausage, 2.5% for semi-dry fermented sausage and only 1.8% for a smoked one. At home you can do whatever pleases you, although we don't see why someone would not want to make products in a safe way.
     
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  14. Thank you Dave and smokinal. Dually noted! I def want to do it in a safe way!

    At the moment it's just salted and am waiting on #2 cure. Yes it will be hanging for at least six months if I can get basement conditions right. Thanks for yalls help! On the matter!
     
  15. Dave, so when I use that calculator you are saying I can have 625ppm of #2 (or #1) if I'm hanging a leg of venison ?

    That calculator calls for 52.8 grams of #1 and 108g of salt @ 3%..... so that's almost half the amount of salt;that I'm supposed to add of the cure? That seems like a lot of cure....(the calculator is preset with #1 cure) are cure 1 and cure #2 interchangeable? tsp vs tsp? Are they eaquel
     
  16. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  17. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Dave, so when I use that calculator you are saying I can have 625ppm of #2 (or #1) if I'm hanging a leg of venison ?

    That calculator calls for 52.8 grams of #1 and 108g of salt @ 3%..... so that's almost half the amount of salt;that I'm supposed to add of the cure? That seems like a lot of cure....(the calculator is preset with #1 cure) are cure 1 and cure #2 interchangeable? tsp vs tsp? Are they eaquel

    Yes you can add up to 625 Ppm cure... You only count the nitrite... The nitrate is not included in the calculation.. Make your mix of cure, salt, sugar and add at 2-3 different times... wait several days before adding the second or third addition... 625 Ppm is the maximum allowed... Over time, the nitrite dissipates... Over a longer period of time, the nitrate is consumed by bacteria and converted to nitrite and even the nitrate will dissipate.. takes a very long time... fortunately, nitrate is VERY common in many vegetable so it's not a problem ... And it is in lesser quantity than the nitrite in cures...
    .....from Marianski's forum....
    http://www.meatsandsausages.com/hams-other-meats/ham-country-american
     
  18. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Just to make this perfectly clear...You absolutely need Nitrite/Nitrate Cure in TWO situations. 1) In any Ground Meat products you want to Low Temp Smoke, at <255, like Kielbasa, Snack Sticks, Summer Sausage, etc. Or any Dry Cure Sausage made by hanging the Raw sausage to dry and age such as Salami, Pepperoni, Sopressata, Landjaeger, etc. 2) Cure is used in any Intact Muscle products that you desire a Smoked Hammy flavor with meat that is Pink after cooking. Items like Belly/Streaky Bacon, Canadian/Back Bacon, City Ham, Cottage Ham, Buck Board Bacon, etc.

    Carefully handled, which include the initial drying BELOW 40 degrees, of Intact Muscle from Land Animals that are Dry Aged and not typically smoked*, like Prosciutto, Coppa, Guanciale, Bresaola, etc, Does Not Require Cure and can be made with Salt Only. In this case, any bacteria is on the surface and the meat will be heavily salted killing active bacteria, then dried in an Oxygen rich environment. There are no Safety risks. However these items, if not aged and dried with temp and humidity controlled conditions, can spoil from things like Re-contamination in the early drying stage, Bone Sour, Black Mold and Decomposition.

    *Smoking Dry Cured Intact Muscle Meat. The debate continues over whether Clostridium Botulinum Spores requires NO Oxygen to grow or can grow in LOW Oxygen environments like in a typical smoker. Read a dozen reports and six say No and six say Low. It may be best to err on the side of caution and add Cure to any dry cured meat you plan to salt/sugar cure then cold/cool smoke one or more days to begin the drying process.

    Regarding Cured Smoked Fish. Old school Lox, Gravlax, Nova and the like were made with Salt and Sugar for dehydration with no Cure, with or without smoke. With the increased use of commercial and home Vac-Packing, mishandling, etc, we have seen an increase in illness from Listeria and Clostridium Botulinum. Like Clostridium Botulinum, Listeria can be controlled with the use of a Nitrite Cure. It's use adds a great deal of Insurance with little impact on flavor since Salmon don't have Myoglobin in the muscle and won't get a hammy flavor like Red Meat of land animals and Tuna...JJ
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2017
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  19. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Thanks Dave...JJ
     

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