Everything is satisfying if sausages are on the plate – a treat for your eyes, nose, and mouth. However, while cooking sausages in your skillet, you may notice slime on the casing. Does that mean your sausage is bad?
Well, not always.
Slimy sausage casing doesn’t always mean it’s spoiled. Natural casings are a bit slimy. However, there are several reasons to consider – bacterial action, inappropriate handling, and inaccurate storage temperatures. However, inspect for proof – discoloration or foul odor – along with slimy textures for decaying.
This article will explore the science behind slimy sausage casing and offer some tips for avoiding slimy sausage casing.
What Makes Slimy Sausage Casing?
The casing of sausage is made from the cleaned intestines of various animals. Pig intestines are the most common because they are the thinnest and have the least fat. The intestine is filled with natural collagen that helps to bind the meat together and keep it in shape.
But, as the sausage is cooked, that collagen breaks down and releases a slimy liquid. That’s why sausages often look slimy and gross — it’s not the meat itself but the casing that’s causing all the problems!
However, in the worst case, the sausage becomes slimy due to a type of bacteria called Lactococcus lactis. This bacterium thrives in the low-oxygen environment inside sausage casings and produces a slime known as exopolysaccharide.
While this sliminess might not seem appetizing, it plays an essential role in the shelf life of the sausage. It helps to keep the sausage moist and prevents it from drying out.
Again, the sausage casing can become slimy for a few other causes. The most common reason is that the sausage has been exposed to too much moisture. When the casing absorbs too much moisture, it can become soft and slimy.
Another reason the casing becomes slimy is if the sausage has been stored at too high a temperature. Excessive heat can cause the casing to release its water and become slimy.
What Happens When The Casing Of The Sausage Becomes Slimy?
The organic casing has two main functions: to protect the sausage from contact with the air and allow the sausage to be cooked evenly. However, the artificial casing is also now trendy, made using cellulose, plastic, or collagen. The artificial casing also does the same as the organic casing.
So, if the casing is made from the intestines’ inner layer, it exerts some organic change in the place. This layer comprises two types of cells: mucous cells and serous cells. The mucous cells secrete a glycoprotein called mucin that forms a slimy layer on the surface of the cells. The serous cells secrete a protein-rich fluid that contains enzymes and electrolytes.
If a sausage with a casing made out of animal intestine gets slimy, it does not mean the sausage is spoiled. The natural casing gives more of a slimy look than the artificial one.
However, if the casing becomes too slimy, the bacteria grow and reproduce. The slimy substance results from the bacteria releasing a slime to protect itself from the environment. The slime contains toxins that can harm the human body. So, you should throw out the sausage instantly.
How To Prevent The Sausage Casing From Being Slimy?
There are a few ways to prevent your sausage from becoming slimy.
- The first is to make sure the sausage is not exposed to too much moisture. You can do this by keeping it in the fridge or freezer and making sure it is tightly wrapped in plastic wrap or butcher paper. You can use MEAT HUGGER white butcher paper that perfectly withstands meat juice and moisture.
- You can also prevent moisture build-up by smoking the sausage at a low temperature.
- Another way to prevent the casing from becoming slimy is to store the sausage at the correct temperature. Ensure your refrigerator is set between 34- and 40-degrees Fahrenheit and your freezer between 0- and 5-degrees Fahrenheit.
What Are You Supposed To Do With A Slimy Sausage Casing?
You can do several things if you face a slimy sausage casing! First, be sure if it is made with natural resources (pig or cow). Natural casing becomes slimy for natural reasons; it does not mean it is spoiled.
Another method is to hold the sausage over a flame until the casing becomes crispy. Either way, it’s essential to ensure that you do not overcook the sausage meat.
However, if the natural casing made sausage becomes too slimy, or the sausage with artificial casing becomes slimy, how can you deal with them? The best way is to throw the meat out.
What Is the White Slime On Sausage?
The white slime on sausage is a common problem during meat processing. The slime is created when the protein in the meat begins to break down. The white slime may come from several factors, including bacterial action, improper handling, and incorrect storage temperatures.
The slime is considered a safety issue, as it can harbor bacteria that can cause food poisoning. It is essential to avoid eating sausage with visible slime and discard any product with an off odor or appearance. So, should you eat the sausage which has white slime on it?
The answer is no. Because the white slime that is found on some sausages is a type of bacteria called Cronobacter sakazakii.This bacterium can cause serious health problems, such as meningitis, blood poisoning, and death.
However, the level of risk posed by Cronobacter sakazakii depends on several factors, such as the age and health of the person.
What Would Happen if You Ate A Spoiled Sausage?
This is a question that has been asked many times, but no one knows the answer. The reason is that no one has ever eaten a spoiled sausage! (At least, not that we know of.)
However, food poisoning is a must with an unpleasant experience. When you eat sausage that has been contaminated with bacteria, viruses, or parasites. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps. So never dare to eat a spoiled sausage!
Is A Slimy Sausage Spoiled?
There is a lot of debate over whether or not a slimy sausage is spoiled. Some people say that the slime is a sign that the sausage has gone bad, while others believe it is simply an indicator of freshness.
The fact is that sausage casing from organic resources becomes slimy naturally; this sliminess indicates that these are fresh and you can eat them. If it starts to become too slimy, it means yes, it is starting to spoil.
However, synthetic casings are naturally not prone to be slimy in their fresh state. Therefore, if you see these become slimy, they start to spoil. So, the slimier the sausage casing, the more spoiled it is.
Tips To Prevent Slimy Sausage Casing
There are a few simple tips to prevent slimy sausage casing.
1. Right Meat
One is to use the right type of meat. Meat high in fat and collagen (like pork shoulder) will produce a slimy casing. Leaner meats like beef or turkey are a better option.
2. Breadcrumbs and Spices Mix
Another tip is to mix the meat with spices and breadcrumbs. This will help absorb the moisture and keep the casing from becoming slimy. You can try 365 by Whole Foods Market Original breadcrumbs for satisfactory results.
3. Correct Temperature
Finally, make sure to cook the sausages slowly over low heat. This will help them retain their shape and prevent the casing from becoming too soft. You can use Johnsonville Sausage Grills for even cooked sausage with no mess.
There are some other ways to prevent sausage casing from being slimy. Such as
- Use a good quality casing: A good quality casing will be less likely to become slimy.
- Rinse the casing: Rinse the casing in cold water after you have removed it from the sausage meat.
- Dry the casing: Ensure the casing is completely dry before storing it.
- What does a slimy sausage casing mean?
If a casing is slimy, the intestine has been soaked in water and then rinsed with salt. This process loosens the muscle fibers in the intestine, which makes the casing slimy. On the other hand, the spoiled sausage also may contain a slimy casing.
- How can you Tell If sausage Is Bad?
The best way to tell if sausage is bad is to look at the color. If it’s discolored, green, or slimy. You can also check and see if it has a foul odor. If it does, it’s time to throw it away.
- Why is my sausage wet?
Your sausage is wet for a reason. It’s the sausage casing that keeps the sausage moist. The casing is made from animal intestines filled with water and proteins that make the casing slippery.
Sausage casing can become slimy for several good & bad reasons – improper cleaning or any fat or meat residue that starts decomposing and releasing slime. Other reasons can be the casing which is not dried properly before it is filled or too much moisture in the casing, releasing slime. Lastly, if the sausage casing starts to spoil, it becomes slimy.
However, all slimy sausage casings are not spoiled; all are not fresh either! So be sure of the sources of the sausage casings and the color and texture of the sausage before you start eating them.