Seeking Advice Making 5.7 inch Thick Sandwich Meat / Sausage

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tallbm

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Dec 30, 2016
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Well I have these big giant 5.7 inch diameter fibrous casings.
Why so big? I want sandwich bread sized sandwich meat.

I did a little light searching and was not finding anything useful, so I'm here to pick the brains of the most knowledgeable folks around.

What would be acceptable ways to smoke and finish the cured ground meat products I would be making with these casings?

I am wondering if they are simply too thick to do alone in the smoker and how long that may take.

Also how long to smoke and then SV if SV is the method to go?
THEN, how long and at what temps would I need to SV something like that without getting fat out?

Any clear, measurable, and definitive info is surely appreciated. Thanks everyone!
 
BOLOGNA all day long for me. But, you can also do many other types of sandwich meats in them. Olive loaf, mortadella, salami, etc...

I prefer my sandwich meats to be a large diameter.

As for smoking, start low to dry (125), bump the temp up to 135 and add smoke, then every hour after that, bump the temp 10 degrees until you get to 170-175 chamber temp, then you WAIT and WAIT, AND WAIT until you hit the IT you want. For me, I would go to 147-150 IT and let it cool in the smoker.

As for sous vide finish, smoke as long as you feel comfortable and then place into a 165 degree bath and allow to finish to the IT you want.

That make sense? It's been a long week already.

BTW, I do recommend the bologna, it's amazing and you'll never go back to store bought
 
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I do 4.5 to 5” sausage. I smoke for about 6-8 hours with the ramp up method. Then finish SV. Water set at 151* and then let them run until done. SV is definitely the way to finish or a hot water pot. The water is so powerful as a heat exchanger. No reason not to finish that way
 
BOLOGNA all day long for me. But, you can also do many other types of sandwich meats in them. Olive loaf, mortadella, salami, etc...

I prefer my sandwich meats to be a large diameter.

As for smoking, start low to dry (125), bump the temp up to 135 and add smoke, then every hour after that, bump the temp 10 degrees until you get to 170-175 chamber temp, then you WAIT and WAIT, AND WAIT until you hit the IT you want. For me, I would go to 147-150 IT and let it cool in the smoker.

As for sous vide finish, smoke as long as you feel comfortable and then place into a 165 degree bath and allow to finish to the IT you want.

That make sense? It's been a long week already.

BTW, I do recommend the bologna, it's amazing and you'll never go back to store bought
yeah I would be doing Owens German Bologna or maybe something like a jalapeno and cheese summer sausage type thing.
Being so thick I didn't know if it would like 24 hours to hit the IT at smoker temps for sausage.




I do 4.5 to 5” sausage. I smoke for about 6-8 hours with the ramp up method. Then finish SV. Water set at 151* and then let them run until done. SV is definitely the way to finish or a hot water pot. The water is so powerful as a heat exchanger. No reason not to finish that way


That sounds great too. Do you have a time it may take with the SV at 151F water temp? I know the 1 time I attempted to SV some much thinner diameter sausges they fatted out real fast at a water temp of like 165F or so. Haven't revisted since and these big giant chubs would likely cook through faster/better via SV I just didn't want to leave them too long to fat out like my 1 and only other attempt at SV to finish lol.
 
I know the 1 time I attempted to SV some much thinner diameter sausges they fatted out real fast at a water temp of like 165F or so.

I just didn't want to leave them too long to fat out like my 1 and only other attempt at SV to finish lol.
At 165F/74C, the temp was very likely your enemy, not the time.

I do my ready-to-eat sausages at 151F/66C with no issues. At that temp aim for a time of 1 hour per inch of thickness. In your case (5.7") I'd probably go 6 hours for a bit of a buffer. I personally don't factor in the temp they're coming off the smoker at into my SV timing.

I know there's some concerns about texture in longer cooks but have never personally had an issue with sausage.
 
I just did a buffalo chicken lunch meat near this size. smoked low temp to get the flavor then finish in the sous vide. came out awesome!!!!
 
I know the 1 time I attempted to SV some much thinner diameter sausges they fatted out real fast at a water temp of like 165F or so.
I've had it happen twice . I think it comes from a sense that SV is fail safe .

Now that you know it's not , you'll be fine . I use a temp of 140 for doing larger sizes of sausage chubs . I go by the time on the Baldwin charts for the size of the chub .

The chart only goes to 70mm . So I use 25mm = 1" , then figure a length of time by that .

I cook start to finish in the SV .
If you're going to smoke first , think of it as " smoke / SV cook "

At that size I would hang at room temp for at least 3 hours to start the warm up of the chub .
I've actually gone overnight , you do what you're comfortable with .

Pick a smoker temp ( I use 130 ) , hang the chub for an hour then start smoke .
No ramp up . SV will do the cooking , you're just adding smoke .
Go by color or give it a couple hours .

I personally would vac seal the chub for the SV cook . If you do , size the bag before going in the smoker so you know it fits . That keeps the water out , and also helps protect from fat out .

Stuffing the chub is important if not bagging . Get it as tight as possible when using SV . Pressure inside the casing should be higher than the pressure in the bath . Helps keep water out .

Run the length of time in the SV per size to finish cook .

This is as important as anything ,
Cool down . When doing long , low SV cooks you need to cool it as fast as possible coming out of the bath . For me that means straight ice in a cooler .
Takes longer than most people think . You're trying to get back down below 40 degrees .

This is Cotto Salami ( 80 mm ) start to finish @ 140 .
Great texture .
20181202_103103.jpg

tallbm tallbm You're not new to this stuff , and you're already thinking of what might happen .
Take any talking points from all the replies and adjust it to what you know .
 
That sounds great too. Do you have a time it may take with the SV at 151F water temp? I know the 1 time I attempted to SV some much thinner diameter sausges they fatted out real fast at a water temp of like 165F or so. Haven't revisted since and these big giant chubs would likely cook through faster/better via SV I just didn't want to leave them too long to fat out like my 1 and only other attempt at SV to finish lol.
Most all of my large diam sausages are 100% pork mostly bologna or Krakowska or mortadella, so an IT of 145* is all I need but pull it anywhere between 145 and 150*. Coming out of the smoker I’m usually about 130* IT, water bath is already warmed up so it comes out of the smokehouse and directly into the water bath, no loss of IT temp. I’ve never had to be in the water bath longer than about 2 hours.

I’ve had the fat out happen twice. Once with clear fibrous casing and once in natural hog casing. However, while it looked like fat out, I’m pretty sure it was more just water inside the casing than true fat out, the sausage itself was firm and had a good profile, just looked horrible in the casing. Since then I’ve not changed my water bath approach and have done over a hundred pounds of various sized and cased sausages with zero issues. I even do fresh sausage such as weisswurst in a pot on the stove with zero negative results. The hot water finish really improved my sausage texture and I cannot imagine going back to the old way of finishing sausage.

As far as water temp goes, Marianski suggests using a water temp of 170*F and while I’ve done it that way I really see no need to go that high in temp, the water is a powerful medium for transferring temperature. Marianski also suggests that fat starts to become molten at around 104F so any thermal processing of sausage should be done relatively quickly as to not hurt the texture of the sausage. For this reason I believe that we should be very careful in the grinding and mixing stage to ensure no fat smear when grinding and that we get good protein extraction when mixing to create a good bind of protein and fat. It’s this bind that helps stop fat out. Using a binder helps too but is not strictly necessary.

Finishing sausage in water is a very good method and is worth your time to get the process dialed in.
 
Can someone explain the benefit of SV and/or what other options would be? Is it just used to "re-heat" meat?
 
I generally grind and rest my meat mixture for 24 hours, then stuff, use a cold / cool smoke on products in the fibrous casings. And when I go to the SV I start off with lower water temps and gradually ramp them up to 150°F, then start a 3-hour timer. My next step is an icy bath.
xyfBzEK.jpg

Nr2rTH3.jpg
 
Can someone explain the benefit of SV and/or what other options would be? Is it just used to "re-heat" meat?
GAGR, In a simplistic nutshell ,SV is killing all the nasties in your product. You must follow temperature and time guidlines for your specific protein. Your product is sort of pastuerized/cooked and can't over cook.
 
At 165F/74C, the temp was very likely your enemy, not the time.

I do my ready-to-eat sausages at 151F/66C with no issues. At that temp aim for a time of 1 hour per inch of thickness. In your case (5.7") I'd probably go 6 hours for a bit of a buffer. I personally don't factor in the temp they're coming off the smoker at into my SV timing.

I know there's some concerns about texture in longer cooks but have never personally had an issue with sausage.
Yeah I think I was too high on the temp and the sausage was not super thick it was in cellulose casings the same size as most natural hog castings.
Thanks for the info! :D
Was curious if you doing low carb bread? Braums has the best tasting and less than $3.
I recenty discoverd (past 3 weeks) the Natures Own and Oroweat options. I'll have to check Braums option out, I have one not very far from me.
So far I liked the size of the Natures Own and flavor more than Oroweat but the texture was a little tougher, not a big deal.
Oroweat (1gm net carb) was smaller but had better texter and less flavor but oddly enough, I seemed to get used to the lack of flavor very fast. I have not tried their option with the grains in it (2gm net carb). I have not tried the Natures Own Honey "keto friendly" (9gm net carb I think) as that is not really low on net carbs at all hahaha.

It's nice to have some bread now though. I was never a big bread guy but being able to slap some chopped bbq into a piece of bread with a little bbq sauce is always a good thing :D

I've had it happen twice . I think it comes from a sense that SV is fail safe .

Now that you know it's not , you'll be fine . I use a temp of 140 for doing larger sizes of sausage chubs . I go by the time on the Baldwin charts for the size of the chub .

The chart only goes to 70mm . So I use 25mm = 1" , then figure a length of time by that .

I cook start to finish in the SV .
If you're going to smoke first , think of it as " smoke / SV cook "

At that size I would hang at room temp for at least 3 hours to start the warm up of the chub .
I've actually gone overnight , you do what you're comfortable with .

Pick a smoker temp ( I use 130 ) , hang the chub for an hour then start smoke .
No ramp up . SV will do the cooking , you're just adding smoke .
Go by color or give it a couple hours .

I personally would vac seal the chub for the SV cook . If you do , size the bag before going in the smoker so you know it fits . That keeps the water out , and also helps protect from fat out .

Stuffing the chub is important if not bagging . Get it as tight as possible when using SV . Pressure inside the casing should be higher than the pressure in the bath . Helps keep water out .

Run the length of time in the SV per size to finish cook .

This is as important as anything ,
Cool down . When doing long , low SV cooks you need to cool it as fast as possible coming out of the bath . For me that means straight ice in a cooler .
Takes longer than most people think . You're trying to get back down below 40 degrees .

This is Cotto Salami ( 80 mm ) start to finish @ 140 .
Great texture .
View attachment 688603

tallbm tallbm You're not new to this stuff , and you're already thinking of what might happen .
Take any talking points from all the replies and adjust it to what you know .
Wow this is exactly the detail I was looking for, thanks!!
having a chart by thickness is a great reference.

Most all of my large diam sausages are 100% pork mostly bologna or Krakowska or mortadella, so an IT of 145* is all I need but pull it anywhere between 145 and 150*. Coming out of the smoker I’m usually about 130* IT, water bath is already warmed up so it comes out of the smokehouse and directly into the water bath, no loss of IT temp. I’ve never had to be in the water bath longer than about 2 hours.

I’ve had the fat out happen twice. Once with clear fibrous casing and once in natural hog casing. However, while it looked like fat out, I’m pretty sure it was more just water inside the casing than true fat out, the sausage itself was firm and had a good profile, just looked horrible in the casing. Since then I’ve not changed my water bath approach and have done over a hundred pounds of various sized and cased sausages with zero issues. I even do fresh sausage such as weisswurst in a pot on the stove with zero negative results. The hot water finish really improved my sausage texture and I cannot imagine going back to the old way of finishing sausage.

As far as water temp goes, Marianski suggests using a water temp of 170*F and while I’ve done it that way I really see no need to go that high in temp, the water is a powerful medium for transferring temperature. Marianski also suggests that fat starts to become molten at around 104F so any thermal processing of sausage should be done relatively quickly as to not hurt the texture of the sausage. For this reason I believe that we should be very careful in the grinding and mixing stage to ensure no fat smear when grinding and that we get good protein extraction when mixing to create a good bind of protein and fat. It’s this bind that helps stop fat out. Using a binder helps too but is not strictly necessary.

Finishing sausage in water is a very good method and is worth your time to get the process dialed in.

More great info! I think I'll avoid the 170F SV temp with this being such a thick sausage. I would rather go lower and not risk the fat out I had with my 1st ever SV sausage attempt years ago.

I generally grind and rest my meat mixture for 24 hours, then stuff, use a cold / cool smoke on products in the fibrous casings. And when I go to the SV I start off with lower water temps and gradually ramp them up to 150°F, then start a 3-hour timer. My next step is an icy bath.
View attachment 688609
View attachment 688610
Also more great info! Thanks for the pics. I like the idea of using the bag without having to vac seal. I may vac seal anyways but these are going to be so large that I would be using a lot of bag for it but could maybe reuse it. With your approach I can cut the bag once and wash it and reuse it!
 
GAGR, In a simplistic nutshell ,SV is killing all the nasties in your product. You must follow temperature and time guidlines for your specific protein. Your product is sort of pastuerized/cooked and can't over cook.
Good info crazymoon crazymoon .

Additionally, with the sausage being surrounded by warm water the heat transfer is basically constant vs air flowing around sausage. Conduction of that heat to the sausage is like automatic and even because the water is basically all one temp where air flow can be all over.
This makes for a super efficient way to cook something so thick all the way through without getting too hot :D
 
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GAGR, In a simplistic nutshell ,SV is killing all the nasties in your product. You must follow temperature and time guidlines for your specific protein. Your product is sort of pastuerized/cooked and can't over cook.
Sheesh! Now I'm really confused :) I just bought a brand new MES40 to smoke sausage. Now I feel like I should have just rigged up cold smoker for my current smoker and bought a SV. Am I missing something? Is the SV just another method of getting sausage to temp slowly? i.e. I was planning on doing the slow smoke method with the mailbox mod on the MES.
 
Sheesh! Now I'm really confused :) I just bought a brand new MES40 to smoke sausage. Now I feel like I should have just rigged up cold smoker for my current smoker and bought a SV. Am I missing something? Is the SV just another method of getting sausage to temp slowly? i.e. I was planning on doing the slow smoke method with the mailbox mod on the MES.
Ah no need to be too confused.

I smoke plenty of sausage both in natural hog castings, lamb castings, cellulose casings, and fibrous castings in my MES40.

This is just a special case of a giant almost 6 inch round casing for making sandwich meat sized stuff. It is not a very common thing to do and because it's a "special" case, SV is a better process to get it right and not ruin it.

Like with many things we smoke/make, there are specific processes, approaches, and steps to consider.

No different then understanding that skin on poultry has to be smoked/cooked at hotter temps to avoid leathery/rubbery skin where boneless skinless chicken does not have this issue.
No different then understanding that smoking only a brisket flat may need to be wrapped with a little liquid because it will want to dry out where a whole packer doesn't have that issue.

Just more stuff to prep, more tools/tips/tricks, to do a specific thing to get it right :D

So don't go changing everything up based on this one oddball scenario :D
 
FYI, everyone.

I think my approach is sorted out.

I'll smoke the thing in my MES until I get the desired color and/or amount of smoke.
Then I'll switch to SV at temps that are lower (thinking 145-150F water temp) until it's done.
Then follow the rest of the post cooking sausage steps (immediately cool fast, bloom, rest in fridge until the next day when I put on the slicer).

Now I just need to see how much Owens German Bologna seasoning I have and if not enough, I'll do ground meat pastrami recipe. It's always good to go and I have 2 frozen select briskets that need some grinding :D
 
Ah no need to be too confused.

I smoke plenty of sausage both in natural hog castings, lamb castings, cellulose casings, and fibrous castings in my MES40.

This is just a special case of a giant almost 6 inch round casing for making sandwich meat sized stuff. It is not a very common thing to do and because it's a "special" case, SV is a better process to get it right and not ruin it.

Like with many things we smoke/make, there are specific processes, approaches, and steps to consider.

No different then understanding that skin on poultry has to be smoked/cooked at hotter temps to avoid leathery/rubbery skin where boneless skinless chicken does not have this issue.
No different then understanding that smoking only a brisket flat may need to be wrapped with a little liquid because it will want to dry out where a whole packer doesn't have that issue.

Just more stuff to prep, more tools/tips/tricks, to do a specific thing to get it right :D

So don't go changing everything up based on this one oddball scenario :D
Thanks! I was dreading having to explain to my wife why I no longer need the new smoker I just bought and instead now need a new Sous Vide thingy majggy lol. Carry on men. I'll let myself out. :)
 
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