Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Getting Ready

Had some leftover white wine, so we put it to use in a clam and pasta dinner or Monday. There is something about this meal that is very satisfying. It is quick an easy to make. Drop some pasta into boiling water. In another big pot, heat some good olive oil. Dump in the clams and cover for a few minutes. Stir in a few cloves of minced garlic and cover it again. A few minutes later, add some wine and slap the lid back on. Once the clams are open, drain and add the cooked pasta (I like spaghetti with this). Stir it up so the pasta is covered with the sauce and add some parsley. Be sure to have bread to sop up the sauce. Dinner is served.
The chamber is up and getting ready. I have the humidifier running with the goal of keeping the sopressata curing in the 65% to 70% relative humidity range. I might need to reposition the fin. It depends on how many links of sopressata I make. The fin (a throwback to kid-free parrothead days) blocks the salami from being in the direct breeze of the humidifier fan. Hanging on the string is a outdoor part of a wireless temperature/humidity weather station. I picked it up a Lowes. I keep the receiver on the kitchen counter so it is easy to keep an eye on the temperature and humidity in the area the meat is drying. It works pretty well. At the time of the picture, the temperature was 57 deg F and the RH was at 57%. Last time I looked the RH was up to 61%. The humidifier is set at 75%, that gave me close to 70% near the meat.
And last, but not least, the casings I recently order came this evening. I got some larger diameter natural casing a few types collagen casings. Starting from the top, 30mm diameter clear collagen casing, casing for a large summer sausage, 38 mm diameter collagen casing and 35 mm+ natural casing. I think I will use the natural casings and some of the 38 mm collagen casings for the sopressata.

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