Whether you’re new to the craft or an experienced hand, it’s always good to keep up with a few tips and tricks when it comes to sausage making so we’ve given Luke (the owner of The New Zealand Casings Co) a bit of a spruce up and set him loose in front of the camera to do what he loves to do best – making great tasting sausages using our 100% natural sausage casings. Make sure you listen right to the end to hear his number 1 tip.
Follow these instructions to get the best results when using our sausage casings.
It is essential to rinse all visible salt off the casings. Do this by running the casing under the tap using cold water. Try to massage between the folds. Do not remove the casing from the tube provided.
Once rinsed, you must soak your casings in fresh, warm water, about 37°C (which is your body temperature). Make sure they are fully submerged and avoid water any hotter than 40°C degrees. Soak your casings for at least 45 minutes. Alternatively, casings can be soaked overnight in cold tap water.
Different sized casings need a different sized sausage maker nozzle (also known as funnel, stuffing tube or stuffing horn). For our sheep casings we strongly recommend using a 13mm nozzle, otherwise you will get tears in your casings. For our hog casings we strongly recommend a nozzle between 24-28mm/1inch - which is the width/diameter of the nozzle at its tip.
Our casings have been threaded onto a tube for easier use. Remove the casing from the water and slide the casing tube onto the piping nozzle. Slide the casing off the casing tube onto the sausage making nozzle. Tie a knot in the end of the casing. You are ready to start filling.
Our sausage casings are dry salted for preservation. They will last for at least 12 months as long as you follow the three golden rules:
If you have left-over casing and have washed the salt off then remove any excess water by running your fingers down the casings then generously re-coat with any finely ground table salt (not rock salt or flaked salt). The easiest way to do this is to put your casing in a bowl and sprinkle a generous amount of salt over it, then roll the casing around in the salt. The salt will stick to the residual moisture on the casing. You want the casing to be completely covered in salt. More salt is better than not enough so if in doubt add more, excess salt will not harm the product.
Wrap in clingfilm/gladwrap and put back into the pouch packaging provided or into a container.
Store your sausage casings in a cool, temperature-controlled environment of between 5°C and 10°C – ideally in the fridge. Store casings away from direct sunlight and heat at all times. We do not recommend freezing your casings.
1. Remove the pork fat from the freezer approximately 20 minutes before you want to use it. It is always best to grind fat which is almost frozen. Fat that is too warm will melt and turn to a messy sludge when you try to grind it.
2. Weigh and cut off what you need as soon as it has thawed enough to cut easily, then put the rest back in the freezer.
3. Dice the fat into 2.5cm/1inch chunks
4. Mix the cubed pork fat through your diced meat, put in the freezer for another 15-20mins and then grind. If you have a big batch, grind in batches and leave the rest in the freezer until you are ready to grind it.
- Our Pork Back Fat is sent chilled. Please freeze immediately on arrival, even if you are going to be using the product that day. Frozen shelf life is 12 months.
- Refreeze any unused product straight away.
- If defrosted and stored in the refrigerator, use within 2 days.
- If you don’t think you will use all 3kg at once it might be a good idea to break down the pack into 1kg pack sizes before you put it in the freezer.