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December 4, 2013 at 5:54 am #1778
I’m in need of a grinder and stuffer. The reviews of nearly every hand crank model on amazon regardless of price prevent me from ordering one. I understand old ones are nice but I don’t have the time or patience to go antiquing till I find one. I thought about the kitchenaid attachment till I read this in a review:
“Horrible grind. Based on all the other faults with this machine, you’ll never reach that beautiful solid grind that you see with commercially ground meat. It’s more of a squishy mess, even with the large dye plate.”
Has this been everyone’s experience? Perhaps this reviewer’s meat wasn’t cold enough although s/he claims to be in the food industry and would presumably know better.
I’d hate to spend the money and have to upgrade shortly thereafter when I’m not happy. The money spent on the cheaper product could have went towards a high quality product.
Should I just bite the bullet and get a dedicated electric grinder and sausage stuffer? If so, any recommendations?December 5, 2013 at 6:07 am #7504Ron PrattMember
First of all let me tell you I love my KitchenAid Professional 600 model. At the time I bought it there was a corporate promo that allowed me to get their meat grinder attachment for free – supposedly a $50 value at the time. I use it to grind my own chuck roasts for chili and it works fine. You just need to chunk your raw meat and then stick it in the freezer for 1 to 2 hours. It grinds much better that way. There are two plates – a fine and a coarse – the fine practically purees the meat and I don’t like that, but the coarse plate is perfect. I have never choked my grinder but then it is a powerful unit anyway. As for the stuffer attachment which I do not have I have heard mixed opinions. I recall the consensus is for the occasional home stuffer it is fine, but if you plan to be a heavy user than bite the bullet and spend the big bucks for a quality grinder and stuffer.
RonDecember 5, 2013 at 6:47 am #7505
Thanks Ron! I think I’m going to give it a try.December 5, 2013 at 7:55 am #7506
After much lamenting, I decided to go with a dedicated grinder. The STX-3000 has an average rating of 4.6 on Amazon based on 324 reviews and sells for $159. I think it will serve my needs nicely. Amazon sells the kitchenaid meat grinder for about $45, which does not include the $15 PLASTIC!!! stuffing horn. Much of the rest of it is plastic as well. I hate plastic!December 5, 2013 at 8:43 am #7507Ron PrattMember
Looks like a fine dedicated piece of equipment that you wii be happy with. I choose my Kitchen Aid mixer for an entirely different reason and the occasional grinding need was just a nice to have feature. BTW happy grinding and happy stuffing! RonDecember 5, 2013 at 12:30 pm #7508Dr. Frederick HowardMember
Again welcome to the Forum. Our Moderator-in-Chief Ron has given you very good advice already so I will weigh in on my experiences. First I have a Kitchen Aid and it works, however as Ron stated its good for small and infrequent jobs. My first run wasn’t very satisfactory because I broke the cardinal rule – thy shall keep the meat cold at all times. Ron’s suggestion to put in the freezer is very good, I will add to that. I place my meat in approximately 1# cubed mounds on waxed paper then place in freezer.I only work with small amounts at a time until I’ve ran it through the coarse plate then place immediately back in the freezer after completing each. Then comes time to run it through the medium or small plate depending on what type sausage I’m making. Then its back in the freezer.
The machine that I have is the same as what you now have. The problem is that you will have to work fast when stuffing as this machine is powerful. So my first run on this was mostly satisfactory, but it kept me moving. I then ordered a hand crank stuffer and voila! No more problems! You control the speed and you can get some beautiful results. The key? Keep your meat cold at all times and have someone assist you – I have my son come by and we switch off. BTW, I also ordered the stainless steel stuffing tubes, I don’t cotton to too much plastic myself. Hope this helps a bit and good luck. I think that I will use my dry aged beef trimmings to make beef sausage links next go round.
DocDecember 5, 2013 at 3:54 pm #7509
Hi Doc – thanks for the great advice! With the high rate of speed at which the machine stuffs sausages, I hope to be okay using the dry bag casing. I assume I can squish everything in place by hand once they are stuffed on the machine in the event there are air pockets. I suspect this would be more difficult using natural casings?? I’ll see how it goes and maybe there is a manual stuffer in future.
Thanks again!December 10, 2013 at 3:08 am #7522Mark KuipersMember
My wife has a Kitchen Aid and grinder attachment and we used that for a couple of years on elk, venison and big horn sheep. It was adequate, but slow and we needed to do it together to speed things up. We were always afraid of burning it out.
Then I got a 1 hp grinder from Cabela’s. What a machine! Grinds 10 pounds a minute, easy to set up and operate and to clean. I’m sure you’ll be happy with a dedicated grinder, provided it has enough power. Mine is way overkill, but boy does it work.December 10, 2013 at 4:07 am #7523
Thanks Tarponhead! I bought a dedicated grinder and plan to post a short review here tonight.December 12, 2013 at 4:18 am #7539Gary DeMarcoMember
B) I have used kitchen aid to Cindy and stuff my sausage but over the years I found that a small investment in a 1 Hp LEM grinder and an LEM Sausage stuffer makes a world of difference no longer have sausage that sometime came out to dry and a little gritty , With the lem grinder I was able to take both back fat and pork Sholder and use a 1/2 in grinding plate that’s perfect sausage, Noow with the LEM 15 lb sausage stuffer you can stuff your sausage without running it through the grinder therefore I was able to add items like pepper jack cheese or feta cheese and spinach running it through the stuffer you don’t grind you push your meat and whatever you wish into the casing without turning it all to mush it works so well we have made chicken feta and spinach sausage it came out perfect. Give it a try, Also we have been using the UMAi dry bags and I have to say they work very well we did the Panchetta Wow is was so good we just cured 4 more slabs and placed them in the dry bags. We are able to purchase our own whole hogs cost me last week $140 direct from a local hog farmer fresh is always better and I know where my meat came from. But please get to know where local butchers are located and buy what you need fresh they is if you are unable to but a hole hog. Thanks GaryDecember 12, 2013 at 4:59 am #7540
I’m definitely getting a stuffer soon. I’m thinking the 5 pound version would be adequate for my needs.
I’ve only used Costco shoulder so far for my coppa and sausage but there’s a small, organic, free range, pig farmer about 40 miles away. A group of us have purchased whole hogs from them in the past for parties, but I don’t have space for all that pork. They will however sell you whatever you want. I pick up a green ham on Friday that I’m making into prosciutto. On the next slaughter day, they are saving me 3 heads and 2 livers.December 12, 2013 at 8:31 pm #7541Gary DeMarcoMember
You will love the lem 5 lb stuffer I as I said have the 15 lb stuffer but we make 25 to 30 lbs of sausage. You can use any kind of meat you want and make small batches , this Saturday we are butchering 4 angus beef cows I’m getting a half of beef and I am going to dry age a few ribeye stakes . Good luck and let me know how things work out. I also purchase items from the sausage maker.com
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