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Decided to convert one of my fridges into a dedicated curing chamber. This will hopefully give me a more consistent product as well as allowing me to cure throughout the year.

 

Quite simple to do requiring just a few items like a temp and humidity controller (bought Inkbird products for this) as well as a humidifier (and an optional dehumidifier).

 

First things first was to give this old girl a thorough clean and sterilize as it had been used as a drinks fridge in its previous life and had its fair share of spills over the years creating some funky organisms inside the compressor unit.

 

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Phew! That's a bit big for my needs. I'm going to try some of those Misty Gully dry-aging bags you can get from Smoked & Cured and just use a bit of fridge space.

 

But there's a lot of space in there, what are you planning on using it for?

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1 hour ago, Cloth Ears said:

Phew! That's a bit big for my needs. I'm going to try some of those Misty Gully dry-aging bags you can get from Smoked & Cured and just use a bit of fridge space.

 

But there's a lot of space in there, what are you planning on using it for?

Been using the Misty Gully bags for years and there great if all you have is a normal fridge and not a damp cellar  or garage the Italians used to ferment and cure over winter. If fact i'm awaiting a big order from them today. Great business if your into sausage/salami making.

 

Im now at the stage where i'd like to produce consistent and quality salaimi & salumi throughout the year and happened to have this big fridge lying around that was only really ever used for brining big primal cuts of meat so it generally sat unused for most of the year hence the conversion. Deep clean and service complete on the compressor but did noticed one of the fans is a bit noisy now so have just ordered a replacement.

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19 minutes ago, Tubularbells said:

Been using the Misty Gully bags for years and there great if all you have is a normal fridge and not a damp cellar  or garage the Italians used to ferment and cure over winter. If fact i'm awaiting a big order from them today. Great business if your into sausage/salami making.

 

Im now at the stage where i'd like to produce consistent and quality salaimi & salumi throughout the year and happened to have this big fridge lying around that was only really ever used for brining big primal cuts of meat so it generally sat unused for most of the year hence the conversion. Deep clean and service complete on the compressor but did noticed one of the fans is a bit noisy now so have just ordered a replacement.

My F-I-L was the big one for the sausage making and capocollo, but he used to simply hang them in his back shed during the winter and then freeze them until required. They used to taste OK, the disadvantage is that there wasn't much variety (hot and not so hot sausage and one flavour fits all capocollo). I can go down to the local Italian shop and pick up a variety of local stuff and choose something else next week - too f***ing fussy for my own good!

But a good dry-aged steak is it's own reward. What sort of losses are you getting in the bags? 30, 40, 50%? I was figuring on about 45% total (30% in the drying process and another 15% cutting off the crust).

 

 

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45 minutes ago, Cloth Ears said:

My F-I-L was the big one for the sausage making and capocollo, but he used to simply hang them in his back shed during the winter and then freeze them until required. They used to taste OK, the disadvantage is that there wasn't much variety (hot and not so hot sausage and one flavour fits all capocollo). I can go down to the local Italian shop and pick up a variety of local stuff and choose something else next week - too f***ing fussy for my own good!

But a good dry-aged steak is it's own reward. What sort of losses are you getting in the bags? 30, 40, 50%? I was figuring on about 45% total (30% in the drying process and another 15% cutting off the crust).

 

 

 

I generally go around a 35% loss before tasting but it really depends on what im making and trying to achieve.

 

Heres a good video to start.

 

Edited by Tubularbells
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  • 3 weeks later...

Bit of an update. First batch of Salami has been fermented and is now curing along nicely  along with some Summer Sausage which has just gone in. Note the white mould growth (Mold 600) in just 5 days between the 5th and last pic. 

 

Salami

 

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Summer Sausage (Pork neck,Beef brisket  & spices which will be smoked and re-hung in a few days time) 

 

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What cut of pork do you use for your salami?  The first salamis I did was pork shoulder, but, the fat was too soft and really ruined the texture of the salami.  I used Misty Gully banquet bags, but now have a fridge setup for temp and humidity control so may try natural casings once I've used up the banquet bags.

 

Here is my effort for yesterday, simple beef sausages!  Wish I was better at linking :-)

 

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@tesla13BMW I use a mix of pork neck and shoulder (with fat cap attached). Not sure what you mean by fat was too soft as by nature that is how it should be imo unless you didn't have things chilled down enough whilst grinding which can inturn make the fat render a bit.  My method is to separate the fat cap and freeze for at least two hours before grinding and re-incorporating into the meat which should intern preserve its integrity.

 

 

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Summer Sausage  sneak peak tasting. First time making this and am really liking this. Kinda like a cross between a cold sausage and salami with a nice tang and great flavor profile whichn should develop even further in the next week before fully cured.

 

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Salami development. The mould 600 is really doing it work well in preventing  the growth of undesirable organisms such as indigenous molds, yeasts and bacteria on the surface.

 

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7 hours ago, Tubularbells said:

Salami development. The mould 600 is really doing it work well in preventing  the growth of undesirable organisms such as indigenous molds, yeasts and bacteria on the surface.<snip>

Nice mould development.

Reminds me of making camembert when I imported authentic french mould. It came in small vials suitable for 1000 litres of milk! (I didn't use it all.:lol:)

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5 hours ago, GregWormald said:

Nice mould development.

Reminds me of making camembert when I imported authentic french mould. It came in small vials suitable for 1000 litres of milk! (I didn't use it all.:lol:)

 

My BIL is a cheese maker and uses a similar strain for there camembert also. I will be keeping this strain alive by peeling some skin off the salami once its fully cured, vacuum sealing it and storing in the freezer until next time when I simply place the mould in some lukewarm water and give it a stir and bingo ready to paint/dip the next batch. 

 

I also suspect that over time the curing chamber will be "infected" by this strain so it might be a naturally occuring phenomena over time.

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