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Hot diggity dog....

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MrTom
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Hot diggity dog....

Postby MrTom » Tue Dec 19, 2017 11:57 am

They are finally done except for the vacuum sealing. 2 tubs of tender grill vittles, compliment of a couple deer from this fall. This pretty much marks the end of the venison tinkering for this year. I'm packing these in packages of 5 since its only Ma and I dining on them. Its a dog day for me now but I always look forward to a good hot dog off the grill when the snow is flying.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby Idaholewis » Sat Dec 23, 2017 1:21 pm

They sure look good!!
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby QuinnTheEskimo » Sat Dec 23, 2017 1:40 pm

Who gets 3, you or Ma?
They look delicious!
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby MrTom » Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:21 am

After getting them packaged up I still had three loose hot dogs so I started a small pile of charcoal and tossed them on the grill. Man, are they delicious. As a kid we had a neighborhood corner grocery store that had a meat counter complete with boxes of smoked hot dogs in continuous links and ring bologna hanging on hooks. They'd had meat by the side in the big cooler. I remember getting about 8 hotdogs in a pound and having to snip them apart for cooking. I can still taste those dogs and bologna since what I just made tastes exactly like those used to.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby twild » Sun Dec 24, 2017 10:10 am

Maybe you should leave one of those deer dogs out for Santa instead of milk and cookies. Keep Santa happy and he'll keep you happy. They look awesome.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby MrTom » Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:55 pm

lol If I thought it would help I'd leave a whole package out for him. Condiments and buns too. And a beer. Maybe even a shot of good Scotch.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby ShawnT » Sun Dec 24, 2017 2:05 pm

Never been too much of a hot dog guy. But I do believe I could eat me 2 or 4 of those! Look mighty tasty Mr Tom! :yeah:
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby MrTom » Sun Dec 24, 2017 3:55 pm

Shawn, if you saw what actually went into commercial hot dogs you'd probably never put one near your mouth. These have 18 pounds of very lean, clean venison trim and 7 pounds of pork with about 70/30 lean to fat ratio. Then the spices and cure. A buddy always said hot dogs were made on nuts and guts. My grandmother said they were floor sweepings and tits, toes and twats. Ain't none of that in these. These are MEAT.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby ShawnT » Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:35 pm

MrTom wrote:Shawn, if you saw what actually went into commercial hot dogs you'd probably never put one near your mouth. These have 18 pounds of very lean, clean venison trim and 7 pounds of pork with about 70/30 lean to fat ratio. Then the spices and cure. A buddy always said hot dogs were made on nuts and guts. My grandmother said they were floor sweepings and tits, toes and twats. Ain't none of that in these. These are MEAT.

I do kind of know and just never really acquired a taste for them. My Dad loves hot dogs and when they makem when I'm around I tell them got to have chili sauce too. So I load up the chili on the dog and then pull the dog out. :lol:

Those you made I would go for in a heart beat. I was hoping to try to make some things this year but got skunked. :( My nephew got a decent buck and had some smoked Trail bologna made by a local Amish family that have a great recipe. It is fantastic and he was a good nephew and gave me some. :D
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby ShawnT » Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:44 pm

Mr Tom,

Do you use a commercial Smoker or one you built?
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby MrTom » Sun Dec 24, 2017 5:51 pm

These hot dogs were smoked in a garbage can....literally. I bought a new galvanized garbage can and cut the bottom out of it. I measured down an inch and a half from the top rim and drilled three 5/16" holes on one side about 4" apart, then did the same on the opposite side. I used stainless steel rods through the holes to make three hanging racks, then strung the hot dogs over the rods and started my pellet smoke tube. I set the smoking tube on our weber kettle grill top and placed the can full of hot dogs over the tube and set the grill cover on the can instead of the actual can top.

The smoking tube smokes for about 4 hours which is a great plenty for hot dogs and sticks. Its plenty for summer sausage and ring bologna too. When the first load of dogs were done smoking I re-filled the tube, re- lit it and re-filled the smoker with the remaining dogs. Smoking in this fashion does not get warm enough to cook the meat so whatever is in there either has to be packaged within a day or so or finished in the oven, then packed for the freezer. I vacuum seal everything. I seasoned the can with several hours of smoking without any meat in it so the galvanizing had a heavy coat of smoke tar on it before I used it for actual sausage.

I can get a couple pictures in the morning and post them so ya'll can see what I am talking about.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby BuckDoeHunter » Sun Dec 24, 2017 7:59 pm

Those look great! Looking forward to the pics :yeah:

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby ShawnT » Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:33 pm

I would love to see the pics too. Sounds pretty easy to make. I would like to set up something back home for next year to use. My Brother and I have been renovating an old Log Barn on our farm in Ohio and one old small equipment shed has been left for me, My Brother calls it "Shawns Room". :D I set up 3 places to Hang Deer from the rafters, and converted an old metal door to a fold down butcher table. I have been doing all the electrical work so I added more lights in there to see to skin and butcher. Unfortunately my nephew was the only one who got to use it this year, but the set up worked great. :( It would be a good place to have a smoker set up stored as I can then just pull it out to the barn lot and let it run. Can't do it here in NY as I live in an apartment so smokers are a big no no. :nono: :roll:

So you don't cook with a water bath prior to smoking?

The Bologna I mentioned is cooked in a water bath for 1 1/2 hours then smoked for 3 hours. My first time to this Amish family that's how they told me they do it, but will not say what the recipe is for the spices. Can't blame them since they are doing it for $$.
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby MrTom » Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:40 pm

I stuff my sausage and put it right in the smoker. When it comes out of the smoker it goes directly into a large canner-type boiler with boiling water. I fill both sides of the sink with ice water. The sausage goes into the boiling water and as soon as it floats [maybe 6 minutes] it goes right into the ice water. When cold it gets hung for at least 24 hours, then vacuum sealed.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby ShawnT » Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:58 pm

MrTom wrote:I stuff my sausage and put it right in the smoker. When it comes out of the smoker it goes directly into a large canner-type boiler with boiling water. I fill both sides of the sink with ice water. The sausage goes into the boiling water and as soon as it floats [maybe 6 minutes] it goes right into the ice water. When cold it gets hung for at least 24 hours, then vacuum sealed.

Thanks for the info!
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby MrTom » Mon Dec 25, 2017 9:44 am

Here are some pictures for you guys.

This first picture is of the can showing the bottom cut out and with the hanging rods in place. The rods are 1/4" stainless steel and the holes the rods fit thru are 5/16" spaced about four inches apart.

Image

Next is the smoke tube on the grill in place centered as much as possible.

Image

The last image is the whole unit set together as if I were actually smoking. The lower portion of the grill kettle has only one of the vents open during the smoking. The grill cover vents are open about half way. Not shown but used are a couple old bath towels that get put around the base of the can to cover the exposed grill grating that the can doesn't cover.

Image

Put together in this fashion the smoke tube creates its own draft and assures a very good smoke coverage to the meat inside. As has been mentioned, the ring bologna is the only sausage that I water finish and I do the water after the smoke. It may work ok the other way around but I have always been told to do it this way, so...

The hot dogs shown were packaged in vacuum bags and sealed just as you see them in the picture. 5 to a package. I could have done a hot water finish on them but I grill these anyway so why bother with the extra dinking around and any link with an open end would simply lose some of the wonderful moisture that these sausages have. Cooked on the grill these are as juicy as can be even if the casings split during the cooking, which many will. I stuff these fairly tight and splitting is not uncommon and for the last couple years I have knick-named them "splitters" and when the kids are asked what they want grilled it always "splitters".

The sticks and summer sausage get finished in the oven at a temperature of 190 degrees. The sticks will be in the oven about three hours at this temp, then get hung to dry for up to a week in the garage, which is un-heated and right now pretty cold. The summer sausage is heated in the same oven at the same heat in a single layer, I don't stack them. I lay a sheet of heavy wide foil on the floor of the oven to catch any drips but seldom get any. The sausage is on the top rack only and at the second highest rack position. After about 6 hours of heating I check the internal temp of the sausage using a probe type digital fast read thermometer inserted a full 4" into the end of the chubs. As the chubs attain a temperature of 160 degrees they get removed and taken to the garage to get hung. When that load is finished I do the next load the following day.

I've used the same rods for hanging for maybe twenty years and in that span I have replaced the garbage cans maybe six times. I currently have a new grill to assemble as the one in the picture is about twenty years old now and the legs are held together with zip ties...lol. Starting from scratch a new 18" grill, new garbage can, some dowels, and a smoke tube with some pellets won't come close to touching a c-note and will cover any smoking needs for sausages as I have done. Its not fancy, its functional. With the exception of the sticks, all of the sausage I made this year was done with Waltons seasonings [waltons.com]: waltons "H" summersausage, waltons ring bologna and waltons wiener and bologna seasonings. The sticks were done using Backwoods seasoning blends. The 19 and 26 mm casings used for the sticks and hot dogs are waltons casings. The ring bologna casings are edible collagen from http://www.sausagemaker.com. The 12" X 2.4" casings for the summer sausage came from Waltons as well and are the perfect size for game sausage. The 12" casings are the easiest to handle, they seal up in vacumm bags beautifully and when opened and in the fridge don't take up a ton of room and seem to not get wasted as people get tired of eating sausage done in 20 inch sticks. Every season used in these sausages came with the appropriate cure for the batch size.

In mentioning cure, all of these sausages got cure added simply because its needed when smoking meats. I have bulk cure on hand and use it in my fish rub so any fish I smike will have the benefit of cure in retarding bacteria. Bratwursts can be done without cure as well as breakfast types of sausage, even those containing game meat, as long as they are stuff and immediately sealed and frozen. As a rule, any sausage that will get slow or low grade heat of any type, such as in a smoking process, needs to have cure in it. There are a couple bacterias that a person does not want to eat that cure alone will not kill and heat alone will not kill....heat and cure together kill these bacterias at 152 degrees. I get my sausages up to at least 160 degrees during the oven or hot water heating processes. There are two kinds of cure: one is pink cure that comes with or is used for smakoing meats and such as I have described. The other is type 2 cure which is used for dried and/or fermented sausages that get no smoke or any kind of heat treatment. The second style of sausage making is complex and has a bazillion control measures that have to be followed so I stay away from making those types of sausage. The only time I deviated from this was this fall when I used a dried pepperoni seasoning blend but used the type I cure and finished the pepperoni in the oven then hung it to dry. The seasonings used in the dried pepperoni product Intensify during the drying process. My using the type one cure and finishing in the oven served to kill all the bacteria as well as helping to eliminate some of the moisture from the meat which helped to hasten the drying time. This pepperoni is some unreal sausage....darned near rock hard until its on a pizza and the flavor bounces all over the place.

As far as the smoking goes, a person can start some charcoal on the grill's coal grid and then set up the smoker can atop the cooking grill and use it that way as well. I haven't done it to this can yet but a new, smaller grill can be bought that will fit inside the can on a couple rods set lower. Set a simple tin cookie sheet cut to fit the cooking grill on the grill and you can add smoke chips to the coals and smoke fish using this get up. I use chunks of apple and pear wood [4" long and split to about 1"] wrapped in heavy foil and just laid on the coals. The cookie sheet helps diffuse direct heat from the coals. I've had commercial smokers and I have built a couple big units but the big thing is controlling heat and temperature. I've found that way too much smoke goes on meats that don't need that much. Smoke should be a flavoring, not a burden. Too much heat during the smoking process is as bad as too much heat period. Many smokers offer heat at the bottom where the smoke is generated....items hanging down get too done and too smoky at the bottom while the same items at the top are left near raw and sort of smoky. Take away the bulk of the heat ant and use the smoke in moderation, then finish the product where heat control is way more controllable and you'll end up with a far better finished product.

I got stung taking a deer to a processer when I was 19 years old. I'm 67 now and have been processing my own deer since that episode. Most of the time in between I have made my own sausages and done my own smoking. I never get tired of doing it and relish at the goodies I have during the winter months that have cost me not much more than some time while others are stuck waiting on their stuff to come back from a handler and not knowing who's meat is stuffed in with theirs. There a a lot of good books on sausage making out there and websites that sell seasonings will also have a help area or a contact us area for getting more direct questions answered. The process is pretty simply and getting set up isn't all that expensive. Buy a good #5 grinder. It'll come with stuffing tubes. Chunk up your meats, add the seasoning and cure and some water, grind, then re-grind, then reove the knife from the auger and add a few flat washers to act as a spacer. attach a funnel and stuff away. This is as simple as it gets. The key is to keep it simple....keep it controllable. Think in terms of a grill and a garbage can.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby ShawnT » Mon Dec 25, 2017 12:42 pm

MrTom,

First off THANK YOU for all that great info! :yeah:

I had a very good friend (started off my first Landload in NY) and after a couple years he treated me like a son. He invited me hunting at their "Camp" in the Catskills of NY. I later heard he had never done that for anyone. He was Czechoslovakian and his wife German. They both taught me a lot about butchering deer and I took that and taught my brother and nephew. This "Camp" was really like a Small community of German and Czech Families. Te same general area has a Polish camp and some Jewish camps too. I was introduced to their "Priest" once. They had a huge community party once and there was a huge tub of cooked and smoke Kielbasa there that was out of this world. My friend said it was the priest that made it for all the parties and showed me his large home built smoker our behind the priest cottage. Turned out he would not share how he make it or his recipe. He was so proud of supplying these tasty treats to the community that he was afraid if he taught someone to do it they would take that away from him. Shame was I was only a guest and he would not show me either even though I told him I was only a guest there and would never think of trying to take that from him. He was very polite but still would not show me either. Shame of stuff like that is that younger generations will lose out on learning how to do things like this.

So I do appreciate you taking the time to explain this. I plan on trying your set up next fall. I have a cheap but decent grinder but only one stuff tube came with it that would do for summer sausage and bologna. I will shop for one to make the sticks and hot dogs with. i can see this being something my nephew would really like to do too.
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby ShawnT » Mon Dec 25, 2017 12:48 pm

I've never seen those smoke tubes. Do you just fill it with the pellets and then light them in a spot with a match?

Actually saw them on Amazon and the reviews told how to light it. That is pretty neat.

Thanks again,
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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby MrTom » Mon Dec 25, 2017 7:51 pm

Yup. One end is open and you simply pour in the pellets and give it a little shake to settle them. I use a propane torch to get a good flame going and then simply lay it on the grill as pictured. I'll even hit the open end with the flame again just to be certain a good burn is going on. I leave it on the grill un-covered for maybe five minutes to be sure its taking and then finish the set-up. This is the 12" tube and generates for about four hours. I haven't tried the 6 inch or the open maze. Its a slick unit and for the money does as much as a 300 buck unit will do smoke-wise.

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Re: Hot diggity dog....

Postby twild » Mon Dec 25, 2017 8:07 pm

Great read thanks for sharing


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