Michigan State University Extension
Preserving Food Safely - 01600627


     Pork  casings,  pickled or preserved in dry  salt,  are
available  at  many  locker  plants.   Beef  casings,  sheep
casings and artificial casings are also available from  some
locker  plants or places where sausage is made.   The use of
casings  can be avoided if fresh game sausage is  made  into
patties  and  cooked sausage such as salami is made in  loaf

     All casings preserved in dry salt must first be  soaked
in lukewarm water before use.   Flush each casing by putting
the  end  of the casing over the cold water tap and  running
cold  water  through  the casing.   Unused  casings  can  be
drained,  covered again with fine salt and frozen.   Casings
which  come in a brine should also be soaked in  cold  water
before use.                                                 

     Some  artificial  casings should be soaked in  hot  tap
water (100  degrees Fahrenheit) at least 30  minutes but not
over  4  hours before  use.   They  should be punctured with
a knife  point before  sausage is stuffed unless the casings
are   prestuck.  The  purpose of puncturing the casing is to
eliminate air and fat pockets in the finished sausage.      

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