Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Jewish Chorizo?

So why did I call this Jewish Chorizo

First you have to understand two things about Chorizo and Treif. 

Chorizo is traditionally made from Pork, and Treif  is all food that is un-kosher or in laymen's terms unfit for consumption. In addition since I am Jewish and the author of this recipe I thought it was a catchy title.   

I will briefly describe what Chorizo is and what my plans are for this Salumi. Chorizo is from the Iberian Peninsula and mostly associated with the Spanish culture. It can be made with several varieties of meat but predominately it is made from pork. Its a very spicy Salumi/Sausage that can be prepared several ways. I chose to dry cure my Salumi instead of the fresh variety. Fresh Chorizo is OK but the dry cured version is the bomb in my not so humble opinion.  

How do you make make Dry cured Salumi's? Well this is my first attempt. I have made plenty of fresh sausages in my time and even the smoked versions requiring Prague Power #1 but never this type of Sausage or Salumi. I consulted many blogs and several books to help with the science. The recipe is all mine and with my own spin. 

Important steps in Making your Salumi

First thing you need to do is choose your meat. I chose boneless short ribs and for the extra fat I needed I chose brisket. 

I kept the meat extremely cold which makes it easier to cut. I cut the meat into one inch pieces than partially freeze the meat which makes it easier to grind.   

After the meat is ground up I give it a quick toss to incorporate the two types of meat than place the meat back into the refrigerator to push temp below 37 degrees. It's important to keep meat out of the danger zone at all times which is 40-140 degrees.  
I pre-measured all ingredients including Prague powder #2 using Milligram scales or this Milligram scale. These scales are not expensive either so pick one up. 

Note 1: The weight of meat plus fat is 100%. All ingredients to be added are expressed as a percentage of the weight of meat plus fat. Percentages can be used to standardize recipes regardless of batch size.  All weights are metric. 

Note 2: No weights are given because the weights of meats vary. Everything is a percentage of the meats weight after trimming. Example- Meat weight 2393 grams and we want to find out the amount of salt we need in grams- 2393 X 3.5%=83.755 or 2392/100 X 3.5 =83.755 grams. 
After the meat temp has come down a bit I mix all the ingredients with the exception of the Culture. I mix the meat quite aggressively to ensure the incorporation of all ingredients. I than add diluted culture to the meat and knead the meat until firm and everything is thoroughly mixed. 

Tec Specs

.012537% to meat weight

If your using 10 lbs of meat mathematically 
10 lb = 4535.92 grams
.012535% X 4535.92 grams = .57 grams or 1/2 tsp

  • Technical information sheets provide the recommended temperatures for fermentation, however, bacteria will also ferment at lower temperatures, just more slowly. For example, the technical information sheet for T-SPX lists temperatures as 26-38º C, optimum being 32º C. T-SPX will ferment as well at 20-24º C which is not uncommon for "European" style sausages, and 48 hours or more is not atypical.
  • When freeze-dried cultures are used it is recommended to disperse them in water. Adding 25 grams of powdered culture to 200 kg (440 lbs) of meat makes uniform distribution quite challenging. That comes to about 1/2 teaspoon to 4.5 kg (10 lbs) of meat and the culture must be very uniformly dispersed otherwise defects will occur later on. For those reasons it is advisable, especially at home conditions, to mix 1/2 tsp of culture in 1/2 cup (150 ml) of distilled water and then pour it down all over the meat. Any tap water which is chlorine free will do, the problem is that different cities, or countries, sanitize water in different ways. Chlorine will kill bacteria and the process will suffer. For this reason it is recommended to use distilled water.
  • Mixing freeze-dried cultures with cold water for 15-30 minutes before use allows them to "wake up" and to react with meat and sugar faster when introduced during the mixing process.
  • Cultures distributed by Internet online companies are of the freeze dried type.
  • Once fast-fermented starter culture or Gdl has been added to the sausage mix, the mix should be filled into casings.

I used a Sausage Maker Stuffer  as my stuffing apparatus. It's a great inexpensive little stuffer that gets the job done. I have had mine for about 15 yrs. 
Now on to the bags. Since I do not have a traditional curing chamber I am once again using a UMAI dry bag for my Charcuterie. 

After three days of fermenting the Chorizo is now ready for the cooler. The Chorizo will lose 30% of their weight. 

After 7 days the Chorizo lost 17% of its weight. Looks great. 

I wrote about my desire to make a Chorizo without Treif and I am happy to report that I completed my project and it came out great!!!  

Look at these pictures!!! Outstanding looking Chorizo if I do say so my self!!!

 After a long wait of only 24 days the Chorizo lost 30% of its weight.  I used the UMAI drybags to tackle the boundaries of Charcuterie

As you can tell from the photos these bags allowed me to make great charcuterie!!!!

Next Batch will be bigger and spicier!!