Making salami is an incredible experience that can be very rewarding. If you want to read about the different processes involved in making salami be sure to check out this post on making Genoa Salami.
In order to make a smoked salami the only thing we need to do is add smoke to the process. The way I do this is by using a cold smoke generator by Smokin-it. This cold smoke generator produces true cold smoke.
Why is the smoke temperature important?
The process of making salami involves a period of fermentation. During the fermentation step we will be maintaing a certain temperature. Each starter culture has it’s own parameters but the one I’m using today (Flavor of Italy) likes 75F – 90F. At these temperatures the bacteria start consuming sugar and releasing lactic acid. This process is known as acidification and helps protect your salami against unwanted bacteria. As we will be fermenting our salami it is important that we don’t exceed these temperatures so using a cold smoke generator that produces true cold smoke allows us to smoke and ferment at the exact same time. Remember, we are not trying to cook our salami, just smoke it.
After we ferment and smoke our salami we check it’s pH with the Apera PH60S-Z (pH meter). What we are looking for is a PH of 4.9-5.2. Basically anything under 5.3 is considered the safe zone. Having a pH meter delivers piece of mind ensuring that your product is safe to eat and it’s a cool tool to have around. We use ours for gardening to test the soil, making sour dough bread, kombucha, sauerkraut, making cheese, and so much more!!
As soon as you hit your target (I like to aim for the 5.0pH area) it’s time to start the drying process. This means you will be placing your salami in a modified refrigerator where the temperature and humidity are controlled. I keep my temperature at 55F and my humidity at 80%. I have found that this produces the best and most consistent product. You can easily control temperature and humidity in your chamber with Inkbird controllers. They are accurate and a good economical option.
One of the questions I get asked often is how do you keep your humidity from spiking in your chamber. This is a great question as the humidity in your drying chamber will always be high especially when you begin to add product to it. In all my years of making salami I have come to trust the Eva-Dry brand of dehumidifiers. They come in all sizes (depending on your chamber) and they work!! That’s the most important part. I use several of theirs and can tell you that they all work beautifully. If you have a small chamber I would suggest the EVA-DRY 1100 or 1200. If you have a larger chamber then I would go with the EVA DRY 2400 or 2500. You can’t go wrong with any of those models.
Enjoy the video and if you have any questions about the recipe let me know.
Here are a few things we used to make this salami
- Flavor of Italy
- Apera pH Meter with Bluetooth
- Extra Calibration Liquid for pH meter
- Cure #2
- Sausage Stuffers
- Meat Grinder
- InkBird Controllers temp & Humidity
- EVA DRY-Dehumidifier 1200
- TaoTronics Humidifier
If you want to see the different things that we use in operation our be sure to check out our new Amazon Store.
- 700 grams lean pork
- 700 grams lean beef
- 600 grams pork back fat
- 50 grams kosher salt
- 5 grams insta cure #2
- 4 grams dextrose
- 2 grams black pepper
- 4 grams garlic powder
- 40 grams nonfat dry milk powder this is optional but really helps with the binding properties of your mince
- Flavor of Italy Starter Culture re-hydrate 1/2 tsp of starter in 1/4 cup of distilled water for every 5 pounds of meat/fat. Let this rest for 30 minutes
- mold-600 re-hydrate 1/2 tsp of mold in 1/2 cup of non-chlorinated water. This will do about 5-10 pounds of salami. Let sit at room temp for at least 5 hours before use
- Grind chilled pork, beef, and fat through the 10mm plate. Let chill before mixing. You want the temp of the meat to be around 30f -32f.
- Prepare all the seasonings and prepare the starter culture and set to the side. You starter culture needs about 30 minutes to “wake-up” before use.
- Mix the meat, seasonings, and re-hydrated culture together. You mince meat will be very sticky when finished
- Stuff your mince tightly into a 60mm salami casing making sure there are no air pockets. Tie the end well to ensure that it doesn’t come open. Weigh your salami and record the weight
- Prick your salami to get rid of any air pockets and brush your salami with The mold 600 (if you are using this)
- Ferment your salami at 75F with 90% humidity for 12-18 hours (these parameters are for this culture, other culture require different parameters).
- During the fermentation stage apply cold smoke for 1-6 hours depending on how smoky you want your salami
- Test the pH at 12 hours to see where you are at. You are aiming for a ph between 4.9 and 5.2.
- Once you have reached your target pH place your salami in your drying chamber at 55F with 80% Humidity. Let it dry in this chamber until you have reached a 35%-40% weight loss.
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