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Sausage Basics - SALT
Posted By: Joe Ames
Date: Friday, April 13, 2001 at 3:58 p.m.
SALT is the most important and common ingredient used in all sausage products. Salt should be added at a level of 2.0 to 2.5 percent of the meat block weight in cooked and smoked sausages. The salt should be of the purest grade of sodium chloride available.
Common table salt is relatively impure, containing numerous heavy metal contaminants such as iron, copper, chromium, and aluminum. These contaminants act as “pro-oxidants,” which means that they accelerate the speed at which a product becomes “rancid.” Although this is not a major problem in cooked and smoked sausages that contain nitrite (cure), it nonetheless is a good practice to use a highly pure grade of salt.
The principle functions of salt in the formulation are to: 1) solubilize the contractile, or “myofibrillar’ proteins within the meat responsible for binding fat and water; 2) impart flavor to the product; and 3) provide limited preservative properties against microbial spoilage.
From an article by W.J. Costello in "Meat Industry" magazine
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