How to Cure Sausage

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A popular pastime for home cooks is sausage making. Sausages exist throughout the world in different formulations. Most any type of meat with seasonings works well as sausage. When making smoked or dried sausage, as well as sausage you plan to cook, remain mindful of the threat of botulism, a food-born bacteria that attacks the body's nervous system and often causes death. It often surfaces in canned food items but sometimes appears in uncured sausages. To prevent botulism, cure your homemade sausages before eating them.

Things You'll Need

  • Sausage recipe
  • Tap water
  • Liquid measuring cups
  • Pre-mixed commercial sodium nitrate solution
  • Salt
  • Food processor, blender or mixer
  • Meat
  • Mix the amount of water that your sausage recipe requires with the pre-mixed sodium nitrate solution. Use 1/4 tsp. of sodium nitrate solution per pound of meat that needs curing.

  • Add a pinch of salt to your cure for each pound of meat. Mix well to ensure even distribution.

  • Open the packet of spices that came with your sodium nitrate purchase and pour 1 1/4 tsp. into the curing solution. For even distribution, put a lid on top of your solution and shake. Once combined, the spices, sodium nitrate and salt react so as to create the cure.

  • Dispose of any spices remaining in the packet unless you plan to use them for more sausage within the next two days. If you plan to use again, wrap tightly and place in refrigerator until the time of use.

  • Mix the curing solution into your meat with a food processor, blender or electrical mixer. Mix by pulsing in short intervals, pausing briefly every few seconds until fully combined.

  • Place meat mixture with quick-acting curing solution in the refrigerator and allow three to eight hours before cooking. If dry curing, place in storage and wait approximately six months before using.

References

  • Photo Credit Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images
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