• Yearling

    I have 3 questions on boneless ham casing
    1 I ordered boneless fibrous ham casings from Waltons and when I went to use them I stuffed the ham in there and went to use my staple machine. when I would staple the casing it would rip on me wondering if anybody else has this problem and what they do?
    2 when the hams come out of the smokehouse and you go to slice them are you taking the casing off first or slicing it with the casing on what works better? seem to me like when I took them out of the casing first I was ripping the meat also seemed like the smoke did not get to the ham through the bag that well.
    3 also did not seem like the ham pulled together that well in the casing from when I put in it to when it came out. Fell apart didn’t want to stay together.

  • Team Blue Cast Iron Sous Vide Canning Dry Cured Sausage Masterbuilt Military Veterans Power User Regular Contributors

    1 give the end of the casing a twist to tighten then staple the twist.
    2 take the casing off to slice making sure the ham is 35f +/- before slicing. If the meat is ripping slow down how fast, you are pushing the meat through the slicer. When smoking ham in casing it does penetrate, but if you like a lot of smoke flavor then smoke for 6-8 hours at a lower temp. You can also add liquid smoke to help get more smoke flavor.
    3 to make a cohesive meat product such as ham or sausage protein extraction must be complete.
    This is a good video for you.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFL6MSDxPgE&list=LL&index=22&t=608s

  • Military Veterans Sous Vide Canning Traeger Regular Contributors Power User Arizona

    paulwery
    Hi Paul,
    I haven’t used those casings. However, concerning boneless ham, not sure how much you’ve made of this, but there is a good bit of mixing process that needs to happen for it to all stick together. There are several threads on it, think if you look under “ham press” and “formed ham” you will find them.
    Basically you need to massively extract protein on the meat chunks so they will have enough exudate to stick together, which means mixing and beating them much longer than you do for normal sausage. I would go 10 min in a kitchenaid mixer myself. Also, what a lot of folks do, is take like 20% of the lean meat, grind it fine like 3mm, then mix THAT super hard. Also mix the chunks hard. Then mix the two together, the fine grind will act as a glue binder.

    You can use any strong casing to stuff the formed ham, so long as it is strong enough to let you get good strong pressure holding it all together. So I usually use fibrous casing, twist the end, but then keep twisting it so it gets tighter and tighter inside. The goal is to ensure all meat is jammed together hard during cooking process so zero gaps remain. If you don’t beat the heck out of it mixing, the exudate glue won’t form on surface and it won’t stick together.

    Oh, you need to poke a lot of holes into the casing first so air can escape, I use prestuck casings as they are same price.

    I have sealed mine with a hog ring that goes around whole casing so there is no puncture, not sure if that is what you mean by a staple?

    I’ve made pork roll this way with 4.5mm grind on all, then also done it with 1/2" to 1" chunks of loin embedded in the 3mm grind so it is a formed ham basically. I’ve used Walton’s “2.9in” fibrous casings, which are all mislabeled and are actually only 2.5" which is just a bit too small for a formed meat IMO. But a great size for big salami, and the casings were good. I’ve used 105mm fibrous casings, and also about 4.5" cloth textile bags, both from Walton’s, and like them. Not sure which casing you used but there is a smoked ham casing with preformed hex pattern… I didn’t like that one compared to just a good diameter fibrous casing, haven’t tried it but looked like it would be hard to twist up some good pressure.

    I take casing off to slice.
    I also have used Walton’s hickory smoke powder with no smoking, just sous vide, and had excellent smoke flavor results with that.
    Edit… I see mrobisr answered while I was typing all this, I agree with all he said too.

    Here are some picks of twisted up casings exerting good pressure, and the small particle bind. Bind looks same on chunky ham versions but you don’t notice the small stuff.
    20221004_110809.jpg 20221003_214251.jpg
    20221004_111108.jpg 20221004_111117.jpg

  • Military Veterans Sous Vide Canning Traeger Regular Contributors Power User Arizona

    mrobisr wow am I glad you posted that link! That guy, Opa Jochen, has a zillion good videos, and I never heard of him… I don’t speak German but it autotranslates to English in the captions. I have my viewing for many days now! He has a lot of great looking stuff. Sweet!

  • Team Blue Admin Walton's Employee Power User Kansas

    Dave in AZ First, great looking product, is there something you haven’t done?
    paulwery The casings should be tough enough to deal with stapling, only thing I can think of it a bur in the closing area… probably not but its the 1st thing that popped into my mind. Maybe check that? Also, we are talking about these casings? https://waltons.com/48-in-x-22-in-fibrous-boneless-ham-casings/ Just want to mke sure Im talking about the right thing.
    I think the 2nd and 3rd thing are tired into eachother. Like Dave said above, more mixing and binding is proably the key to all of it, more mixing is going to make it all bind together more.
    Also sorry about the typos, I took some severe cold and flu medcine and typing on my laptop which I suck at anyways!

  • Military Veterans Sous Vide Canning Traeger Regular Contributors Power User Arizona

    Jonathon thx Jonathan, but I haven’t done 10% of all the great videos you’ve posted! I have a long way to go to rack up close to your experience, but you guys keep me motivated 😉 I hope you are better soon, I have heard many friends getting a covid strain this last week that seems pretty harsh 😞

    paulwery If you are talking about the 4.8"x 22" casings that Jon linked, then YES, those are my favorite ones! They are prestruck to let air seep out, and are the perfect size for lunchmeat to me. You can use twine then double the end back on itself and tie again in what is called a bubble knot also. I have tied it reasonably tight, then massively tied off all ends, and then twisted it into 2 “links” in middle to increase the pressure. You can see a pic of this in my post. It also has benefit of letting you fit a long 22" chub into a smaller sous vide container!

  • Team Blue Cast Iron Sous Vide Canning Dry Cured Sausage Masterbuilt Military Veterans Power User Regular Contributors

    paulwery The best way I know how to describe the process of mixing is you have to mix until the mixture forms a pasty slurry, that is the protein (glue) that binds the chunks of meat together. The video I posted he uses a method that is a little easier by grinding a small portion of the meat fine, that really speeds up the protein extraction and will typically make it easier to get a good final product.


  • Commercially, we used to soak fibrous casings 15-30 minutes before use in 100F water to make them more pliable before stuffing. We didn’t usually have any problems with clips tearing the casing that way unless there were burrs on the clipper anvil.

  • Wisconsin Team Orange Regular Contributors

    Great info here, this will help me too in the, hopefully, near future

  • Team Blue Masterbuilt Canning Kamado Joes Regular Contributors Power User Sous Vide Oklahoma

    Dave in AZ man that pressed ham looks great 👍 congrats

  • Military Veterans Sous Vide Canning Traeger Regular Contributors Power User Arizona

    cdavis thanks Charlie

  • Team Blue Masterbuilt Canning Kamado Joes Regular Contributors Power User Sous Vide Oklahoma

    Dave in AZ this was a great thread. Lots of good info I can use. Thanks to all.

  • Referenced by  Dave in AZ Dave in AZ 

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