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Old 06-05-2016, 08:43 AM   #7
somebody shut me the fark up.

IamMadMan's Avatar
Join Date: 07-30-11
Location: Pemberton, New Jersey

Originally Posted by IbrahimSS View Post
The idea with botulinum is it was on everything from the second you got it. So it's not about it getting infected after the casing. My guess is you watched Franklin cook these things to a proper internal temperature.

Botulism is only a threat for uncooked foods and by uncooked I mean not brought up to a temperature high enough and for long enough to kill the bacteria and destroy the toxins. I'm pretty sure the latter is the most important.

Also I might be wrong here but I'm pretty sure the deal with casing is really that it restricts oxygen which creates the right environment for the toxin to be produced. Either way cooking makes it kosher from everything I know.
Originally Posted by Okie Sawbones View Post
Use cure and you don't have to worry. Nitrites prevent the transformation of C. botulinum spores into toxins. It is almost like applying a vaccine to eliminate a disease. By curing meats with nitrites, we protect ourselves from possibly contracting a deadly disease. Nitrites are cheap, commonly available, and completely safe in amounts recommended by the Food and Drug Administration. So why not use them?
The above have covered everything I could bring into this conversation.

However I would like to add: Don't confuse cooking sausage in a smoker with cold smoking sausage at low temperatures. The recipes and formulations are completely different because they are stored, cooked, and smoked in distinctive contrasting methods. They also produce two distinctively different products with completely different characteristics of taste, texture and color. The difference is as plain and simple as comparing smoking a pork butt for pulled pork to a cured smoked ham, completely different in all aspects.

If you are smoking sausage at normal cooking temperatures in the smoker, (probably the case with Franklin's video, Texas Sausage) you are cooking the sausage at a safe cooking temperature killing the bacteria.

If you are smoking at a low temperature for a long period of time, this is when you enter the danger zone. Smoking at low temperatures creates a warm, moist, humid environment, and the smoke displaces the oxygen, creating the perfect host for the bacteria to grow (danger zone temperature, humidity, and void of oxygen).

The nitrite you add for curing and cold smoking prevents bacteria from growing while you keep it for an extended period of time in the refrigerator, and then smoke it in the temperature "danger zone" for another extended period of time. But as Michael Ruhlman says in the article, they're not bad for you, so why risk it? When used properly, the cure simply dissipates into a gas and there are is no sodium nitrite remaining in the final cured product.

There has been and always will be debate on the use of nitrites and nitrates in curing meat. Some will argue that only salt it is needed as a curing agent. They argue that "mankind has cured meats for centuries without the use of these additives." This statement is only partially true, because mankind did not intentionally add the nitrites when curing, they were natural formations of nitrites. It is also impossible to tell how many people in these centuries actually died from food poisoning because of the extended incubation time of these lethal bacteria. Today we have the medical technology to diagnose and treat food-borne illnesses, as unpleasant and painful as they may be, it is necessary to take precautions to avoid and prevent these food-borne illnesses.

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