Seeking Sumac Sausages. Sujuk?

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Post by markjass » Fri Oct 25, 2013 06:26

no not dry cured. cured and smoked.
http://www.meatsandsausages.com/sausage ... odhalanska

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Post by redzed » Fri Oct 25, 2013 07:27

Then we are talking about two different sausages.
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Post by Soujoukforlife » Wed Dec 18, 2013 00:58

I know I'm posting late here, but I get excited when people talk about soujouk (sudjuk, sujuk, sucuk)! I'm Armenian so I grew up with sujuk, and there are two main kinds: black and red. Sumac can certainly be used in sujuk but is by no means what gives sujuk it's flavor. They derive their flavor substance from black pepper and paprika, clueing you into the meanings of their names. Within that, there are multiple degrees of heat and even sweeter sujuk. I've started making it recently, and it is not only effortless (just hang your mix in a stocking in a cool area for up to two months), but does NOT need a starter culture or cure and does NOT need to be cooked when aged appropriately. I've eaten it raw my entire childhood and there is no need for concern unless eaten way too early. It's delicious when cooked though, and needs no oil as it fries in its own fat (75/25, 70/30, and 80/20 are all normal mixes, but dry at different rates). I saw someone else post about tzatziki and that is rather effortless as well: remove seeded areas of some cucumbers and process the rest until you have finely cubed or diced cuces. Mix with an equal part PLAIN Greek yoghurt, adding some salt, pepper, diced fresh dill and diced or ground up garlic to round it out. Consistency should not be too thick or too watery, but in between
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Post by Soujoukforlife » Wed Dec 18, 2013 01:04

Actually my last post was a bit misleading, you do need a "cure" but it is simply salt
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Post by el Ducko » Wed Dec 18, 2013 01:54

Ah! ...a soujouk fan who actually knows about the REAL thing! :grin:

If you can, could you post a recipe or two? I'd love to try them. Please include procedure and timing details. They appear to be very important for soujouk.

Just about all of us here on WD advocate using nitrite or nitrite/nitrate cures, so we'd like to hear your thoughts on the subject and how these so-called "modern" cure methods would apply (versus traditional salt-only).

Also, what are your recommendations for paprika? There are so many different ones available, and (no doubt) many more which we cannot get here in the USA.

Thanks for joining the WD forum, and thanks for sharing.
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Post by Soujoukforlife » Wed Dec 18, 2013 22:01

Ok so it seems to me that all the recipes in your initial post are viable options, but different casings and temperatures affect drying. I'm making a batch right now that is quite similar in method to Tony Tahhan's recipe in your initial post. I'll post the recipe I am using and pictures of the process. I won't be using a grinder or food processor, nitrite or nitrate cures, and am not using plastic or animal based casings, so I am posting links to recipes I have found that do implement these processes that I strongly suggest you peruse:

1.A multi-post recipe using casings, calling itself bulgarian, but most likely the author is ethnically armenian: http://caramellacooks.blogspot.com/2008 ... -post.html

2. A recipe for Lukanka, a bulgarian brother sausage to soujouk. Talks of casings and a cure: http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/1299 ... anka-dried

3. Difference between general black and red spicing of soujouk: http://thefoodblog.com.au/2009/03/sujuk ... nd-to.html

My recipe:

3 lbs. of 75/25 ground beef mix I bought from a butchers stand at my farmer's market

2 1/2 tbsp. of salt

3/8 cup finely diced garlic (adjust to taste)

3 tbsp. smokey paprika (if all you can find is simply labeled "paprika" don't worry :) )

2 heaped tbsp. of fine ground black pepper

2 hpd tbsp. cumin

1 hpd tbsp. cinnamon

Nylon stockings that are non-scented

two sheets of plywood and some weight

Mix raw meat with all spices, ensuring that the spices are THOROUGHLY mixed into the meat, especially the salt. This is very important because the salt will be doing most of the work.

tie off a knot at toe end of a stocking, leaving space beyond the knot that can be hung on a nail or hook.

Stuff the stocking with the length of meat that you want. Before you tie off the other end of your cloth casing, you want to shape the meat. Roll it and shape it to make sure that there are no breaks in the meat and that it forms into a uniform cylinder.

Tie off the other end of the link tightly to the meat. If your soujouk links are larger than meatballs, they should not be connected to each other.

There are two ways that these are generally hung: On one end hanging like and "l", or more popularly, from both ends in a "U" horseshoe shape. Arrange all your soujouks in whichever of these you choose on a sheet of wood and put another sheet of wood on top of it.

Place this arrangement in a cool area and place a fair amount of weight on top and sit for 24 hrs. This will flatten them out a bit and drain most juice

Hang your soujouks in a cool dry place that does not have strong sunlight or is easily accessed by animals. In my case, I've created a cool environment in an out-of-the-way area of my house that is well ventilated with open windows and as cool as outside.

Check on them daily or every two to three days, but don't prod. If you hung them in a "U" shape and notice that they are starting to curl towards you or away from you or heavy in the "elbow", take them down and gently roll them flatter and evenly with a rolling pin. Maybe try hanging ends a little spread out.

They should start to harden after a few days, and full drying depends on the time and temperature. I'm rambling on this post, so I'll jump to another one for details on time and temp and pictures that I have
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Post by Soujoukforlife » Thu Dec 19, 2013 00:02

Soujouk that I've made tend to be semi-hard after 5 days to two weeks. These have at least a slight stiffness to the outside, but are pink inside. This stage of aging cannot in my experience be eaten raw. However, providing it is stiff enough for you to do so, you may cut thin slices maybe like 1/4 in thick and fry it in the pan. Its fat content means it will fry quickly and without additional oil. I do this in the morning with eggs. To eat "raw", or without having to fry it, you must age it about a month or two months, and this depends upon your climate. I make soujouk around october/november/ december. Here, it's usually in the 30's and 40's maybe 50's F during the day and 20 at night. You can tell if your soujouk is "done" all the way through because it will have noticeably darkened in color to its core. Its outer firmness will tell you when to cut it open and test, as it will be very hard. The fully aged form can be eaten in the same manner as above or "raw", but can also be implemented in other dishes as cooked larger cuts.

https://imageshack.com/i/051nvuj

https://imageshack.com/i/5b3lsvj

https://imageshack.com/i/1n1mkkj

I've formed these into very flattened "patties" this time instead of the typical rounder shape. I'm testing out thickness's effects on drying time, their thickness again reminiscent of Tony Tahhan's recipe. However, thicknesses and shape vary, and the last batch I made was actually more similar to the "Carmella Cooks" link. I've seen chains of small egg shaped "chunks", long "U" shapes like kielbasa, or medium sized straight sausage link sized but slightly flattened. Like chili, flavor varies by region, with a basic recipe that has different ingredients added in different areas, especially the use of alcohols. The flavor of the soujouk I'm currently making is a mixture of the things I like from the black and red. If you've tasted any commercial soujouk, (which is obviously fully cured to be able to reach you) you've probably found things you like about it and spices that taste similar to or would compliment the spices used in it (think middle eastern or mediterranean). This will inform how you spice it. Also if you've eaten commercial soujouk before, you'll know when it smells just right. I would definitely suggest obtaining different heats of paprika if you are able, but I have only been able to find hotter paprika now and then. I think McCormick might sell a "smoked paprika", but I haven't been able to find it recently. If you can't find a good paprika, maybe use it as a supporting flavor to black pepper or try and substitute it with something like cayenne powder + something else? I have no experience with cures, as I'm just beginning my foray into cured and smoked meats. However, I would assume that extra agents for drying might mean less salt and less time drying? I do know that however potentially unsafe it may be without these agents: A. It is a very old and continued way of drying meat so when it IS done right it's safe to consume "raw". B. If you're not prepared to consume it raw (and in any case you should assume unless you've made it before that it hasn't been long enough), it cooks rapidly
Casings are obviously not involved if cloth casings are used, but when cooking slices of soujouk made in plastic or animal based casings, cut the slice first and then peel the casing off its rind before cooking (not necessary with animal based, but still usually practiced).

I'll post more pictures of progress and feel free to ask any more questions
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Post by el Ducko » Thu Dec 19, 2013 15:46

Wow! I need to try this! Thanks for all the good information.

I just purchased some smoked "hot" paprika. Now I must chase my wife around the house until I can obtain the necessary stockings!
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Post by Soujoukforlife » Wed Jan 08, 2014 20:10

So it's been a while since my last post, but my batch of soujouk finished around the change to 2014. Thought I'd post some pictures.

Soujouk still in stocking casing and soujouk with casing removed:
http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/40/tw4g.jpg/

Demonstrating the firmness your soujouk should have:
http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/541/wwt5.jpg/

Your soujouk should be the same color all the way through, and significantly darker in color and harder than when you started (this means it can now be eaten uncooked too):
http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/690/0goz.jpg/

Your soujouk should slice quite cleanly into pieces as it now has an exterior "curb"
http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/835/gztn.jpg/

thanks for your time and good luck with all your soujouk ventures!
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Post by Soujoukforlife » Wed Jan 08, 2014 20:18

One last thing! if you are currently using a soujouk, you may keep it in your fridge for a good amount of time. If you have more soujouk than you need, keep your extras in the freezer (they'll absolutely keep for months either way) and move to the fridge when you want to use it.
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Post by Igor Duńczyk » Wed Jan 08, 2014 23:16

Thank you for the impressive detailed pictures! They add so much to the impression that one gets from reading your (also very detailed) recipes.

What I would like to know is for how long the soujuks have been drying at the time you took the pictures? They look REALLY dry!

Do armenians also make the turkish style cooked and semi dried "Parmak Sucuk" where sumac is very often added ?
Wishing you a Good Day!
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Post by Chuckwagon » Thu Jan 09, 2014 20:16

Hey, hey, Souj...
Igor wrote:
What I would like to know is for how long the soujuks have been drying at the time you took the pictures? They look REALLY dry!
They really do seem particularly dry. You say they keep well in the freezer? Are you happy with the texture?

Best Wishes,
Chuckwagon
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Post by Soujoukforlife » Fri Jan 10, 2014 06:28

They hung from Dec 16th-29th. These most recent pics are on Dec. 29th and the first pics were from Dec 18 or 19. I noticed that the tony tahhan recipe duk posted said air drying for something crazy like 3-5 days! I noticed his was also much flatter than any other sujuk I'd ever seen. I made this batch flatter to test out drying time and instead of a month-two months it took 13 days for the last one to fully finish. I've had no problems keeping it in the freezer and fridge but with me it goes fast :). Good texture not dry for how flat it is and nice acidity when uncooked. In the future I do not want them this thin but it was a nice experiment. Not sure if Armenians in Armenia make "parmac sucuk" as that's decidedly a Turkish recipe and spelling but it's a nearly identical recipe, and I'm sure I could make their variation if I tried my hand.
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Post by Chuckwagon » Fri Jan 10, 2014 19:13

Thanks Souj, for posting all this information. However we can not possibly recommend it for our Member Recipe Index without including sodium nitrate/nitrite cure.
We encourage all members to read the safety information at the following link: http://wedlinydomowe.pl/en/viewtopic.php?t=6634&start=0

Best Wishes,
Chuckwagon
If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it probably needs more time on the grill! :D
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Post by Soujoukforlife » Fri Jan 10, 2014 22:59

Thanks chuck,


el Ducko made me aware of these concerns when I first posted, and I posted someone else's recipe for lukanka (soujouk's bulgarian brother) earlier in the thread that has such a cure.

Here it is again:
http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/1299 ... anka-dried

That being said, I'll give the safety information another peruse ;).

Cheers,
Soujoukforlife
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