If you want to make a delicious snack, then try making beef sticks. The process used to make a beef stick is like that used to make sausage. A grinder with a stuffing attachment allows you to pack the collagen cases carefully with your own seasoned beef mixture. Collagen, a protein in the connective tissue of animals, typically comes from the hide of cattle or sheep in the making of beef sticks. Making your own beef sticks will require patience, but in the end, you will reward yourself with a homemade snack that suits your tastes.
Things You'll Need
- 2 lbs. ground beef
- 1 lb. ground pork
- 1 ½ tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. liquid smoke
- ¾ tsp ground black pepper
- ½ tsp. mustard seed
- ½ tsp. fennel seeds
- ¼ tsp. garlic powder
- Hand grinder with stuffing attachment
- 1 box 22-millimeter sheep casings
- Aluminum foil
- Meat thermometer
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Place the ground beef and pork in a bowl. Add the salt, liquid smoke, ground black pepper, mustard seed, fennel seeds and garlic powder. Use your hands to mix the ingredients until well blended.
Use your hand grinder with a stuffing attachment. Choose your smallest stuffing tube.
Place the casings in warm water. This will allow them to soften.
Slide the casing onto the nozzle of your stuffer attachment. Twist the end of the casing to prevent the beef mixture from falling out while you stuff. It will take practice to use the stuffing attachment, and you may need to consult the manual to ensure that you have attached everything correctly.
Stuff the casings carefully. Continue to stuff them until you reach the desired length for the beef sticks. You want the casings to be full, but you do not want them to burst.
After stuffing each casing, close the top end by twisting it shut.
Place the snack sticks in the refrigerator overnight. This will allow the meat to cure and bring out the flavor of your seasonings.
Line the bottom of your oven with aluminum foil. Place the beef sticks directly in the oven at 170 degrees. Leave the oven door ajar for 1 hour while the beef sticks bake.
Check the temperature of the beef sticks after three hours. The temperature needs to reach 150 to 160 degrees for the beef sticks to be safe to eat.
Seal the beef sticks in an airtight container. Place the container in your refrigerator. You can also freeze the beef sticks for up to one year without their losing their flavor.