Project "P" (Pepperoni)

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Post by bcuda » Sat Dec 02, 2017 01:15

This is the recipe I used. Just don't understand why it came out bitter
just like the peperoni I did from this topic both very badly bitter.

Salami Calabrese ( I left out the fennel seed on purpose )

12 lbs lean pork loin
5 lbs of pork back fat
salt 215g
cure #2 19.3
dextrose 15.4g
sugar 15.4g
pepper 15.4g
red pepper flakes 30g
paprika 15.4g
t-spx culture. I used the scale on package and added a little more
sweet red wine 15oz

ferment at 20c for 72 hours at 90% humidity
then dry at 13.5c and 80% humidity
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Post by Bob K » Sat Dec 02, 2017 01:58

Do you define bitter as a sour, astringent flavor? Also how much culture did you actually add?
I would blame the wine. You can elimininate it or add less . Like 2% instead of 6.5%
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Post by redzed » Sat Dec 02, 2017 21:26

I don't know where you got that recipe, but there is probably too much fat in there (30%) and if it was not fresh, it might be a possible explanation for the off flavour. If it was on the sour tasting side it is because you have too much sugar in there. Generic red pepper flakes mostly come from undeveloped countries where quality control is lacking, so that also might be an issue. If you are going to make S. Calabrese, use Calabrian peppers and try this recipe. ... sc&start=0

I have used it several times and it is one of the best! If you follow the instructions as outlined you will not be disappointed. For the meat use only lean pork with no connective tissue and no soft fat. Loin meat is fine for salami, but not recommended as the only cut to use. Mix it up to 30% with meat from ham or front shoulder. Use 20% fresh back fat.
Last edited by redzed on Fri Dec 08, 2017 21:48, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by jjnurk » Fri Dec 08, 2017 19:55

Quick question in regards to the how fermentation and dry curing will effect the taste of pepperoni, using certain ingredients. I have a pepperoni recipie that i use, which calls for 0.48% sugar and 1.12% nfmp. When it's smoked, tastes excellent. So I'm wondering, if I use those %-ages and add my bacteral culture and obviously switching from cure #1 to #2, ferment and cure, would that be acceptable or do I need to subsitute those ingredients with eg. dextrose and/or maybe soy protein?
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Post by redzed » Sat Dec 09, 2017 06:28

Hi Joe,
The smoked, tangy and sometimes hot tasting pepperoni is an Americanized version of the original Italian sausage that is fermented and dry cured, has no tang, but may be spicy and cold smoked. If you want to ferment it, sucrose might do it, but you have to keep in mind that all bacteria metabolize glucose (dextrose), and most, but not all will metabolize sucrose. Sucrose will also take longer to metabolize whereas glucose is converted to lactic acid as soon as the farce warms up. As far as the amount of sugar to use, for a mild southern European flavour, go with 3g/kg of dextrose or if the bacteria likes sucrose, go with 2g of dextrose and 2g of sucrose. (use icing sugar or the the fine sugar sold at Bulk Barn). If you want a bit of tang, the pH should go down to less than 5 and as low as 4.6. So you will be adding 5-8g/kg of sugar if you want the tang. Also keep in mind that paprika has approx. 10% sucrose, so you need to adjust for that. Hope this helps. :grin:
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Post by jjnurk » Mon Dec 11, 2017 16:32

Thx Chris, appreciate the info. I guess a little experimentation will be required :mrgreen:
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Post by redzed » Mon Dec 11, 2017 17:24

Just a note on the "nfmp" in the recipe you mention. Reference here is to non fat milk powder, and American name for what is known in Canada as skim milk powder. But you can't use the instant type sold in supermarkets. That stuff is highly soluble and it does not hold water which is the primary reason that it is used in commercial sausage production. The non istant variety used to be sold at Bulk Barn, but they no longer carry it. Very hard to source in Canada. You can order it from Medallion Milk in Winnipeg, but it's expensive and there are excessive shipping costs. DNR Sausage supplies sells a milk product that I tried which works well, and you can buy it in small amounts ... words=milk

Having said that, European sausausage makers shun the use of any such binders and extenders, and no original Italian style dry cured products contain milk products. Many of Len Poli's recipes call for it but his formulations are very much Americanized and also use fast fermentation. I never use any binders in dried cured sausages. You should be able to achieve a good bid from the extraction of the myosins in the meat and the gelation that occurs when fermentation drops to a ph of 5.3 and 5.2.

I do use milk powder in some poultry sausages and in emulsified products rather than adding phosphates.
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Post by jjnurk » Mon Dec 11, 2017 17:42

Yup, skim milk powder.
So then another question ..... I use "curaid supreme" which is a food grade sodium phosphate to act as a binder. I wasn't too keen on it, but the supplier suggested that it is a "great product that the commercial guys use to retain the water/weight". Once I've used it, it gives a really nice binding quality as well as a really nice visual, no doubt about it. I don't use a lot, in fact probably 1/2 of what they recommend, just enough to bind. What's a good substitute for that? soy protein isolate or concentrate? Or something else?
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Post by redzed » Wed Dec 13, 2017 04:23

Phosphates do considerably more than soy or milkvbase binders/extenders. I am not a fan of them because one of the reasons that we make our own products is to avoid all the chemicals that are used in commercial products, mainly to increase the profit margin and extend shelf life. If you can learn to classify meat and use the right cuts, ground and mixed in a specific way, there is no reason to use binders when making a quality sausage. But since you asked, the following is an excerpt about phosphates from Rodrigo Tarte, Ingredients in Meat Products, pp19-21

Phosphates are included in many curing solutions and cured meat formulations
because of numerous beneficial effects that they bring to cured meat products.
However, phosphates are not distinctive ingredients that characterize cured meats,
as is the case for nitrite and salt. Cured meats can be manufactured successfully
without phosphates and will demonstrate all the typical properties of cured meats
expected by consumers. At the same time, the advantages of including phosphates
are such that these compounds have become a common ingredient in most cured
meats, except for dry and semidry products.

Phosphates differ from many other food ingredients in that several different forms
may be used. Further, the different forms of phosphates vary greatly in properties
and, consequently, in applications. For example, there are at least ten specific phosphates
that can be used in processed meat applications. These phosphates vary
widely in two critical properties: pH and solubility in water (Molins, 1991) . A 1%
solution of the different phosphates in water, for example, can range from less than
pH 5.0 to over pH 10.0. Solubility of the phosphates can range from less than
10 g/100 g of water to over 100 g/100 g of water. Generally speaking, the commonly
used phosphates in processed meats are alkaline because one objective of
their use is to increase meat pH and, in doing so, increase water retention. The commonly
used phosphates are also somewhat limited in solubility, such that when
added to injection brines where concentration of other compounds (sodium chlo1
Basic Curing Ingredients 19
ride, sugar, etc.) is expected to be high, it is imperative that the phosphates be dissolved
first or they may not dissolve completely.
The phosphates can be categorized into four groups based on their structure. The
orthophosphates are the simplest and consist of a single phosphate (PO 4 ) unit. Both
sodium and potassium salts may be used in processed meats. Most of the orthophosphates
are alkaline except for the monosodium and monopotassium phosphates,
which are acidic. Single phosphate units may be condensed into longer
chain phosphates with combinations of two phosphate units (di-phosphate) normally
termed pyrophosphates . Pyrophosphates can also be used in processed meats
as either sodium or potassium salts and, while most are alkaline, this group includes
sodium acid pyrophosphate, which can be used as an acidulant for accelerating curing
reactions. Longer chain phosphates include tripolyphosphates , which are condensed,
three-phosphate chains. Both sodium and potassium salts of tripolyphosphate
are basic but are significantly different in their water solubility. Finally, longer
chain condensed phosphates are called simply polyphosphates because the number
of phosphate units may vary from about 10 to about 25 (Molins, 1991) .
Metaphosphates are multiple phosphate units arranged in a ring structure and are
not used in foods. A traditional name used for one of the polyphosphates has been
sodium hexametaphosphate, which is technically inaccurate and has caused some
confusion. Sodium hexametaphosphate is not a true metaphosphate, but rather a
straight chain polyphosphate of 10-15 phosphate units (Molins, 1991) .

Phosphates, like many of the other cured meat ingredients, perform multiple functions
when added to meat mixtures. One of the most important functions of phosphates
is the increased capacity of meat proteins to bind and retain water. The net
result of improved water retention is not only improved cooking yields, but also
improved product texture, tenderness, and juiciness (Xiong, 2005) . The effect of
phosphates on meat proteins is twofold. First, the use of alkaline phosphates significantly
increases the pH and ionic strength of meat mixtures, an effect that is well
recognized as a means of improving water retention by increasing protein charge
repulsion. However, since the pioneer work of Offer and Trinick (1983) , it has
become clear that phosphates also facilitate removal of transverse myofibrillar proteins
that, in the presence of salt alone, serve to constrain swelling of myofibrils and
extraction of myosin. Sodium pyrophosphate and tripolyphosphate appear to be the
most effective in this regard (Xiong, 2005) . One of the major advantages of the
protein-specific effects of phosphates is the opportunity to reduce sodium chloride
content in cured meats while retaining the water-binding capacity of the higher salt
concentration. Sofos (1985) reported that salt content could be reduced by about
50% to 1.1%, in cooked comminuted meat by addition of phosphate. Ruusunen and
Poulanne (2005) suggested that salt content in cooked sausage could be reduced to
about 1.4% with addition of phosphate.
The effect of phosphates on meat protein solubility is also an important contributor
to the binding properties of meat pieces in restructured products, heat-set protein
gel properties, emulsion stability, and many other functional properties of
processed meats that are affected by soluble myofibrillar proteins. Improved solubility
of myofibrillar proteins provides greater protein concentration for the functional
roles of these proteins in processed meat products.
Phosphates have an important function as contributors to antioxidant activity in
processed meat products. There have been extensive studies with a wide variety of
products that document phosphates as very effective for suppressing oxidation in
meat products (Molins, 1991) . Because sodium chloride is recognized as a prooxidant
in meat, the addition of phosphates is particularly advantageous in those
products where rancidity could quickly develop (Vasavada, Dwivedi, & Cornforth,
2006) . Cured meats are well protected by the antioxidant activity of nitrite, but in
uncured, moisture-enhanced fresh meats injected with water, salt, and phosphates,
or in uncured, cooked meat products, the phosphate provides a critical protective
role (Detienne & Wicker, 1999) . Phosphates are not typically classified as antioxidants,
despite their positive contribution to lipid stability, because it is generally
believed that phosphates exert their antioxidant role indirectly. The most common
explanation of how phosphates protect lipids from oxidation is metal chelation and
removal of catalysts that serve to initiate lipid oxidation (Molins, 1991) . While
other mechanisms may be involved, phosphates are recognized as effective synergists
for antioxidants such as butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated
hydroxyl toluene (BHT), an effect that supports the suggested role of phosphates as
Although not considered to be primary antimicrobial agents, there are several
studies that have reported antimicrobial effects of phosphates in meat products.
Most of these have found phosphates to contribute to bacterial control and shelf life
of fresh meat (Molins, 1991 ; Molins, Kraft, & Marcy, 1987 ) but these effects are
less obvious in cured meats. The presence of other significant microbial inhibitors
in cured meat has made it difficult to separate any potential antimicrobial effects of
phosphates from those of other food additives.
While color is not considered to be a major function of alkaline phosphates in
meat, these compounds are likely to have an effect on product color. In the case of
cured meats, the elevated pH resulting from phosphates may slow the nitrite curing
reaction and extend the time needed to generate sufficient nitric oxide for good
cured color development. Without adequate time, cured color will be less intense.
On the positive side, a higher pH is conducive to greater cured color stability during
extended storage of the finished product. An important factor in maintaining cured
color during storage is a small amount of residual nitrite, which is likely to be better
maintained with high product pH.
Because the phosphates vary widely in pH and solubility characteristics, it is
important to consider the different phosphate properties for specific product applications.
Solubility, for example, will be more critical for a phosphate to be dissolved
in an injection brine than for a phosphate added to a comminuted product.
Further, phosphate suppliers have developed blends of phosphates to provide the

Although there are many forms of the phosphates that may be used in cured meat
and poultry, the regulations that apply do not differentiate between the various
phosphates or phosphate blends. All are restricted to 0.5% (5,000 ppm) based on
finished product weight when used to reduce moisture losses, to protect flavor, or
as a cure accelerator. Most processors utilize 0.3-0.4% to compensate for the small
amount of phosphate naturally present in meat. While all of the phosphates that are
generally approved for use can be used in both cured meat and cured poultry, there
is one exception; when sodium acid pyrophosphate is used as a cure accelerator, it
may be used in cured meat but not in cured poultry.
When phosphates are used to increase product pH, the USDA will also allow the
addition of sodium hydroxide in a ratio of 1 part sodium hydroxide to 4 part phosphate.
The function of the sodium hydroxide is solely for achieving greater increase
in product pH over that of phosphates alone.
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