Who doesn’t love a good snack stick. Tangy, smoky, and perfect on any occasion. In todays recipe we will be fermenting our snack sticks to achieve that beautiful tangy flavor. This step is completely optional but will add a complexity to your snack stick that will make them totally delicious.
We are going to be fermenting our snack sticks to naturally lower the pH through lactic acid producing. These bacteria that we add in our snack sticks will consume the sugars in our recipe and release lactic acid. As they release lactic acid the pH of our meat will begin to drop. The lower the pH gets the tangier your snack stick will be. You don’t need to worry about testing the pH for this recipe as I’ve dialed it in for you but if you have a pH meter you would be looking for a pH around 4.5 – 4.8
I used collagen casings in this recipe but if you happen to have sheep casings those work great as well. Just be sure to dry your snack sticks out before cooking so that the casings can adhere properly and the snack stick can take on that tasty smoke. To dry your casing out simply hang it at room temperature for a couple of hours before smoking or set your smoker to very low (110F-115F) with the baffles wide open or the door slightly ajar. This will speed up the process.
Follow basic fermented sausage preparation practices when making this sausage.
- Clean and Sanitize all of your equipment.
- Keep your meat and grinder parts super cold (below 34F)
- Any liquid that is added to the mince needs to be ice cold
- Mix your very chilled meat till the mince becomes very tacky
- Stuff the mince into sausage casings and prick out any air pockets
- Ferment your snack sticks at room temperature for 24 hours (75F-90F)
- After fermentation smoke and cook your snack sticks low and slow:
Start at 125F for 1 1/2 hours, 135F for 1 hour, 155F for 1 hour, 165F till the internal temp reaches 140F (smoke is being applied lightly through the entire cooking process)
- After they finish smoking submerge the snack sticks in ice cold water to cool them off completely
- Finally let them bloom at room temperature for several hours.
- Refrigerate and enjoy!!
Here are a few things you might find useful when making sausage
- High Quality Natural Casings (AA Grade)
- Iodophor Sanitizer
- MK4 Thermapen (Accurate Thermometer)
- Chef Knife – KOTAI
- Boning Knife
- Iwatani Professional Chef Torch
- LHP DRY – Starter Culture
- Insta Cure #1
- Potato Starch
- Sausage Stuffers
- Meat Grinder
- Bella’s Cold Smoke Generator
If you want to see the different things that we use in operation our be sure to check out our new Amazon Store.
- 700 g lean beef
- 300 g pork back fat
- 17 g kosher salt
- 2.5 g insta cure #1
- 6 g dextrose
- 1.7 g black pepper
- 1.5 g celery seed
- 2.25 g garlic powder
- 8.85 g paprika
- 21 g mustard powder
- 4 g mace
- 4.5 g cayenne pepper
- 8.85 g chipotle powder
- 20 g nonfat dry milk powder
- 1/4 cup ice cold water
- LHP Dry Starter Culture 1/4 tsp of culture diluted in 2 tbsp of distilled water for every kilo of meat.
- collagen casings 22mm
- Clean your meat of any silver skin, sinew, arteries and cut into small strips or cubes. Place the meat and fat in the freezer for an hour or until the temp reaches 32f – 34F.
- Prepare all of your seasonings, clean and rehydrate your casings, and rehydrate your starter culture. The starter culture needs to rehydrate for 30 minutes prior to use.
- Grind your very chilled meat and fat on a course plate then regrind on a medium plate
- Add your seasonings, the ice cold water, and the starter culture to your mince meat and mix till it becomes very tacky. If you grab a small handful it will stick to your hand if you hold your hand upside down.
- Stuff your mince meat into the casings and hang them in an area where the temperature is 85f-95F for 24 hours (you can also place them in your oven with the light on during this fermentation stage)
- After 24 hours of fermenting place the snack sticks in your smoker and begin to apply smoke (we use an external cold smoker for this)
- Start at 125F for 1 1/2 hours, 135F for 1 hour, 155F for 1 hour, 165F till the internal temp reaches 140F (smoke is being applied lightly through the entire cooking process)
- Once finished cooking submerge in ice cold water and hang to bloom for 3-4 hours
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