Photo by Meredith Leigh
This semidry sausage takes only two weeks to make, and would be delicious as part of a meat and cheese board.
Fermentation type: Lacto
Primary Fermentation: 7 to 10 days
Secondary Fermentation: 3 to 5 days
Total Time: 10 to 15 days
Shelf Life: Once sliced, 7 to 10 days
Yield: 2 sausages, approximately 900 grams each
- 2 kilograms lean beef (some fat is OK)
- 56 grams kosher salt
- 6 grams organic dextrose
- 5 grams curing salt #1 (substitute celery juice extract according to manufacturer’s instructions)
- 1/2 gram commercial starter culture, such as F-RM-52
- 6 grams black pepper, freshly ground
- 4 grams ground nutmeg
- 3 grams ground bay leaf
- 2 grams ground allspice
- 1 gram ground ginger
- About 7 feet of beef middles, rinsed of salt and soaked for at least 1 hour
- Grind the meat through the coarse plate of a meat grinder and mix in the salt, dextrose, curing salt, and starter culture.
- Vacuum seal and let rest in the refrigerator for 7 to 10 days.
- After rest period, remove the meat mix and grind through the fine plate of a meat grinder. With gloved hands, mix in the remaining spices.
- Stuff into the beef middles, tying each sausage off securely with butcher’s twine, and leaving enough tail on the twine for hanging. Weigh each sausage and record the weight.
- Prepare a cold smoker, and smoke the sausages at 72 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit intermittently (don’t worry if the fire goes out each day, just start it again the next morning) for 3 to 5 days.
- Weigh the sausages again, aiming for 30 percent weight loss. If you haven’t achieved it after smoking, hang the sausages in a charcuterie cabinet at 50 to 60 degrees and 75 to 85 percent relative humidity until weight loss is achieved.
Alternatively, you may increase the temperature in the smoker to about 130 degrees and hold the sausages at the higher temp for 2 hours. If you take the heat treatment route, chill the sausages before slicing and serving.
Visit “Lebanon Bologna: A Preserved Relic with Disguised Distinction” to learn more about the history and development of this sausage.