Homemade Sausage Making
Recipes for Tasty Homemade Sausages

Dry Cured Meats and Sausages - Make Yourself Some Great Sopressata!

Chuckwagon - Mon Jun 27, 2011 05:19
Post subject: Make Yourself Some Great Sopressata!
Project “S”

I just checked the price for Southern Italian Sopressata Salami. It is more than $13.00 per pound. This alone is a very good reason to make your own. Made from several cuts of pork, this dry-cured version is sometimes smoked in northern Europe. However, in southern Italy, it is generally left to collect beautiful white mold.

[USA] "South Pass Sopressata"
(Dry-Cured Spicy Pork Salami)

4 kg. (8.8 lbs.) Pork Butt
1 kg. (2.2 lbs.) Pork Back Fat
140 g. [3%] (7 tblspns.) Salt
12 gr. (2 level teaspoons) Prague Powder Cure #2
(Do NOT use Cure #1 in this recipe)
10 gr. ( 4 tspns.) Powdered Dextrose
15 gr. (2 tblspns.) Black Peppercorns (cracked – coarse grind)
1.8 gr. (1 tspn.) Red Pepper Flakes
1.8 gr. (1 tspn.) Ground White Pepper
113 gr. (½ cup) Corn Syrup Solids
5.6 gr. (2 tspns.) Garlic Powder
2.8 gr. (1 tspn.) Chili Powder
0.6 g. (1/4 tspn.) Bactoferm™ T-SPX
Bactoferm™ Mold 600 (*optional – see instr. below)

Preliminary steps: Keep a logbook! Record everything you do. Write down dates, times, measurements, etc. Believe me, you’ll refer to it several times during the process. Save your notes for the next batch. They will be invaluable. Don’t ignore this step. It only takes a few seconds to write down the information you may really need later on.

Thaw the Bactoferm™ T-SPX following the directions on the package, and measure .6 gram (1/4 teaspoon) of the culture, mixing it with a little distilled water, allowing the bacteria time to “wake up”. Freeze the back fat and nearly-freeze the lean meat. Place the grinder plate and blade in the freezer too - (20 minutes is plenty). Chop the meat into 2” cubes for the grinder.

Sopresatta is known for its higher fat content and larger size dice. Using a sharp knife, cut the frozen back fat into ¼ ” – ½” dice or grind it using a half-inch or 5/16” plate. It is important to freeze the fat before grinding to avoid “smearing”. Place the diced fat back into the freezer and add the remaining ingredients to the meat mixture, distributing them well. Mix the meat until the primary bind develops, becoming sticky. Work in small batches, refrigerating the meat at every opportunity. Finally, fold the frozen fat into the meat, distributing it equally. Stuff the sausage into 2-3/8” (61 mm.) synthetic fibrous casing or medium hog middles about a foot long. Hog middles are sold in “sets” about seven feet long. Be sure to rinse them well before using them.

Weigh each salami and record its “green weight”. Record it in your logbook and tag each salami.
Ferment the sopressatas at 68˚ F. (20˚ C.) for 72 hours, in 85% to 90% humidity. Inspect them regularly adjusting the relative humidity and temperature to develop the “equalibrium”. Next, you must make a choice of the type of sopressata you wish to make.

Option #1. If you prefer a smoked, northern Italian or northern European style sopresatta, dry the sausages completely then cold-smoke them (below 65F.) 60 hours in 80% relative humidity for great mahogany color and smoked flavor. Place them into a drying cooler at 50F. (10C.) in 75-80% relative humidity up to ten weeks until 30% weight loss has been achieved. Note that throughout history, smoking has been used to discourage the growth of mold, therefore smoked sopressata is not generally treated with Mold-600. Important: Smoke the sopressata using “cold smoke” only. It must remain below 65˚F.

Option #2. If you prefer a southern Italian or southern European style sopresatta having a white, flaky, protective mold covering, use Bactoferm™ Mold-600 (penicillium nalgiovense) following the directions on the package. Spray the sausages with a misting sprayer or dip them into the solution. Dry the salamis at 57˚ F. (14˚ C.) in 80-85% humidity for one month. Lower the humidity to 75% and continue drying them until a 30-35% weight loss is achieved after about another month. During the drying period, inspect the casings daily and wipe off any colored or “fuzzy” mold with a little vinegar on a cloth. Mold on sausage must be white in color. When safely lower than .85 Aw, the Sopressata will yield only about seventy percent of its original weight and should ultimately weigh just over 7 lbs. Store the sopressatas at (+or- 4˚) 55˚ F. (13˚ C.) in 75% humidity.

For Reference:

Process:..................Temp:......Humidity:.......Length Of Time:

Fermentation........... 68˚ F........85-90%..........72 Hrs.
Drying...................... 57˚ F........80-85%..........2 – 3 months
Storage.................... 55˚ F........75%...............until consumed

Meat Starter Culture Bactoferm™ T-SPX
(Slow: Assists with drying a month or more) Also: Semi Dry Cured
Bactoferm™ T-SPX is a freeze-dried culture well suited for all fermented sausages where a relatively mild acidification is desired. T-SPX is particularly recommended for the production of Southern European type of sausages, low in acidity with an aromatic flavor. The culture is suitable for molded as well as smoked fermented sausages. (Semi Dry Cured)
Note: Cultures must be stored in freezer and has a shelf life of 14 days un-refrigerated and 6 months frozen.
Contains: Pediococcus pentosaceus and Staphylococcus xylosus

Bactoferm:Mold 600 (Previously M-EK-4) Meat culture for production of moulded dried sausages with a white/cream colored appearance. Mold-600 is a single strain culture containing spores of Penicillium nalgiovense in a convenient freeze-dried form.
P. nalgiovense is a fast growing, traditional white mold culture for controlling the surface flora.

Mold-600 is particularly recommended for the production of traditional sausages dried at low temperature and/or low humidity. It suppresses the growth of undesirable organisms such as indigenous molds, yeasts and bacteria. The culture has a positive effect on the drying process by preventing the emergence of a dry rim. Furthermore, the mold degrades lactic acid during maturation resulting in a pH increase and a less sour flavor.
Note: Cultures must be stored in a freezer and have a shelf life of 14 days un-refrigerated, while about 6 months when frozen.

Best Wishes,

uwanna61 - Mon Jun 27, 2011 15:39

Hmmm let me think about it :wink: I’m in :lol:

Funny thing I was in the grocery store this past Friday, snooping around the fancy cheeses in the deli and noticed a basket of Sopressata sitting there. The price was $7.00 bucks for this little salami that I could probably consume in one sitting with a glass of wine. The whole thing weighed 2.0 oz. That’s when I realized, this will be my next salami adventure.

uwanna61 - Thu Oct 13, 2011 00:53

Below is the semi cured Sopressatta just coming out of the smoker. Now to bloom and cure for 5 - 10 days. As mentioned this is a test on my part, hope it comes out, I’m sure it will not have the full flavor of the European fully cured Sopressatta, but I like the spice combo and also get impatient on the wait for two months, and I’m really looking forward to the taste test. CW sorry I hacked your recipe :roll:

Chuckwagon - Wed Nov 23, 2011 01:26

Hey Guys, I just received the following message by email. YeeeHawww! Somebody out there is making sopressata! This is great news. :mrgreen:

Hey Chuckwagon,
I wanted to post on the forum but I can never remember my sign in or password but I just tried my soppressa after two months of drying and WOW it is the best I have ever tasted! I wish I could have posted it.

Can't wait to make another batch.

** Ahem! Ahem! (pat on the back for Stan Marianski)... I like the part where Rand says, "after two months of drying and WOW it is the best I have ever tasted!"

Best Wishes,

Chuckwagon - Wed Nov 23, 2011 05:22

A follow up from Rand:
I had one of my Italian friends over for dinner tonight and let him try some. He has been eating homemade soppressatta most of his life and I knew it would be a good test for mine. He couldn't stop eating it. I had to take it away so he had room for the rest of my dinner. Made me feel very proud.
No, I won't be trying to sell any. [Rand is a professional chef]. I will probably just give some of it away or use it with any dinners that I might do in the future. It is getting harder and harder to start any type of business today and the food business is one of the hardest.
I also just hung some fresh pancetta that I had curing for seven days in my drying chamber. I can't wait for that to be done. I just returned from spending two weeks in Rome and had some of the best bacon I have ever had. It excited me enough to come home and make my own batch.


Butterbean - Mon Mar 05, 2012 04:59

Chuckwagon, its been a long time. :wink:

Here are a few things I pulled out and sampled today. The soppressatta is on far right. The recipe was similar to what you posted but a few tweeks for personal taste. Gotta say, I think sampling all this fermented stuff is almost as fun as making it.

Chuckwagon - Mon Mar 05, 2012 11:31

Butterbean, you are having way too much fun! I think you definitely have the knack!
May I make just one suggestion? Not being critical but I think I may help. Try reducing the air speed just a bit to get a little slower drying rate. I can see just a trace of dry rim. You've got gorgeous color on both. How does it taste?

Best Wishes,

Butterbean - Mon Mar 05, 2012 13:38

Noted. I think some of what you are seeing is due more from age than wind speed cause I had no wind which became a problem in other ways. They taste great. The deep mahogony one in the center (kielbasa) needs to hang another week I think. Casing was larger on its just bumping 30% loss. I think it will look and taste better when it loses a little more water.

They taste great.

Chuckwagon - Wed May 02, 2012 07:53

To see 2 more photos and projects in sopresatta, click on this link: http://wedlinydomowe.pl/e...33036dd575#9483
Uwanna has made some gorgeous sopresatta with fast culture, while Story28 has made a totally contrasting sausage using a slow, traditional culture with mold. Both are exquisite. Nice work guys.

Best Wishes,

Cabonaia - Wed May 02, 2012 22:39

Hey CW - With sopresatta, how much leeway do we have on drying temp? I see that 57F is ideal. Would a temp range of 60 - 65F be out of bounds?
Chuckwagon - Thu May 03, 2012 08:04

Hi Cab,
If I were you, I'd limit the high drying temperature to 60F. Better to dry it a few degrees below that at around 56 or 57 F. As it get into the storage stage (having lost 30-35% weight), I would even reduce that temperature to only about 52 or 54 F for best results. Hope this helps.

Best Wishes,

uwanna61 - Thu May 03, 2012 12:14

I agree with CW running close or a few degrees below is ok, humidity during the first week is key, especially during the fermentation process, usually the first 72 hours is key on the outcome your product. Another note, from the time after the product is stuffed to the fermentation step, let the product hang at room temp for an hour or so before exposing to warmer air. Hope this helps….


Cabonaia - Fri May 04, 2012 05:15

Thanks CW and Wally - I've got to save my pennies to build that drying chamber I'm hankering after. I've got an environment that stays pretty right during the winter for smaller diameter stuff, but not during summer by your advice. Appreciate your words of wisdom.
atcNick - Tue Dec 18, 2012 02:32

What type of wood so you guys recommend for smoked sopressata?
Chuckwagon - Sat Jul 13, 2013 06:29
Post subject: Columbus actually had four ships!
I'm resurrecting this post because my pal Jason Story sent me some of the finest sopresatta I've ever tasted. It was magnificent. Jason is our fellow-member "Story28" and he and his lovely wife Carolina are the owners and operators of the "Three Little Pigs" is Washington D.C. Both graduated culinary school together where they fell in love and then opened one of this country's finest charcuterie shops according to the Washington Post! Their menu is staggering and having sampled many of Jason's products, I can vouch for the exquisite touch he puts on each.
I don't believe you can pry Jason's recipe from him without some effort! The recipe above is mine, and although it's not quite as elegant as Jason's... mine "ain't bad"! - I brought it to America when I landed with Columbus quite some time ago. Yes, El DuckO... There were actually four ships - the Nina, the Pinta, the Santa Maria, and I was in the fourth ship... the Cowabunga! :roll:
Please give my sopresatta a try. As we say in the west.... "sssnot bad"!

Best Wishes,

redzed - Sat Jul 13, 2013 08:10

Thanks for bumping up that sopressata recipe CW. I looked at it a while back and then kind of forgot. (happens often). Will definately give it a try when I get a bit more time. Fantastic weather here so far and have been busy hiking and camping these days, and the salmon have also been running. Will be making some some snack sticks on Sunday, nothing too complicated.
Chuckwagon - Sat Jul 13, 2013 08:15

have been busy hiking and camping these days, and the salmon have also been running.

Chris, you're having waaaay too much fun! :wink:

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