Chorizo Curing 21 days! Little bit of case hardening#$*&^!!!!!!!

December 29, 2006

100_0171.jpgI am in the process of curing about 20lbs. of chorizo. I cut into one of them and there is a minute black ring. This tells me thnat the outside dried too fast. I think I left the fan on too much for air circulation and is the root of this evil! Air causes dehydration. The cooler has consistently been at the optimal temp and RH for the duration, so it has to be the fan!

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3 Responses to “Chorizo Curing 21 days! Little bit of case hardening#$*&^!!!!!!!”

  1. mikeb Says:

    Even if it dried a little fast, that Chorizo has great colour. It looks better than the stuff you see at Rui Gomes and the other butchers around Toronto. Keep up the good work.

    The Christmas layout looks good too. I just smoked a 10 lb turkey for Christmas. My 1st time smoking a turkey, so I had a backup in the roaster just in case I got the timing wrong. I won’t need to do that next time. Wow! Was it good.


  2. Thanks Mike!
    What kind of smoker were you using for the Turkey?
    The problem with case hardening is that when you are dry curing the
    inside will not dry properly. With Chorico from Rui Gomes it is a
    different style. They are smoked in a hot smoker till they are cooked
    to an internal temp of at least 160 degF and then flash cooled. The
    Portugese style chorizo is done in a similar process that is used too
    produce Summer Sausage. Spanish Chorizo is done in the same process of
    salami.

    Cheers

  3. mikeb Says:

    Hi Thomas,

    My wife got me a Large Big Green Egg for Christmas a year ago. It’s basically a charcoal ceramic grill that you can set up for indirect cooking. At present, I don’t have the real estate for a full-size smoker so it’s a great compromise. It has no water pan but the ceramic case really keeps the moisture in. So far I’ve successfully smoked pulled pork, various pork ribs, chops and sausages both homemade and store-bought. The only cut so far that I haven’t pulled off well was beef ribs–I totally misjudged the timing on them. This likely explains me having an extra turkey on hand for Christmas.

    The Green Egg will grill up to 800 F so it can grill up a nice steak as well. The size is a limitation. You can only get 4 racks of ribs in it at one time, but it’s a nice dual-purpose unit for a backyard.

    The other issue besides the size is that the smoker doesn’t stay low enough for cold smoking, although I have seen some creative ways of pumping the smoke into a Styrofoam cooler. We make sausages at home—mostly from Rytek Kutas’ book, sausagemaking.org and Len Poli’s site—but have yet to do any curing and cold smoking. I think you’ve got the right idea using a homemade smoker especially for cold smoking. My wife’s uncle has had success with salmon using one of the inexpensive ones sold at sporting stores, but I want something to do sausages as well.

    Keep up the posting. I am glad someone is doing real BBQ (in a real mobile pit), home made sausages and proper charcuterie in Toronto. It would be great to see you achieve your goals. We moved back here from the States a few years ago and good BBQ is definitely one of the things that I miss. Needless to say, that’s what got me into doing it myself.

    Ciao


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