≡ THE “HITCHIN’ POST” ………………Talk About Anything ≡

≡ THE “HITCHIN’ POST” ………………Talk About Anything ≡

Keep it clean, folks! (…more or less.) sausage making

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by Frank L. Visco
My several years in the word game have learnt me several rules:
  1. Avoid alliteration. Always.
  2. Prepositions are not words to end sentences with.
  3. Avoid clichés like the plague.(They’re old hat.)
  4. Employ the vernacular.
  5. Eschew ampersands & abbreviations, etc.
  6. Parenthetical remarks (however relevant) are unnecessary.
  7. It is wrong to ever split an infinitive.
  8. Contractions aren’t necessary.
  9. Foreign words and phrases are not apropos.
  10. One should never generalize.
  11. Eliminate quotations. As Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “I hate quotations. Tell me what YOU know.”
  12. Comparisons are as bad as clichés.
  13. Don’t be redundant; don’t use more words than necessary; it’s highly superfluous.
  14. Profanity sucks.
  15. Be more or less specific.
  16. Understatement is always best.
  17. Exaggeration is a billion times worse than understatement.
  18. One-word sentences? Eliminate.
  19. Analogies in writing are like feathers on a snake.
  20. The passive voice is to be avoided.
  21. Go around the barn at high noon to avoid colloquialisms.
  22. Even if a mixed metaphor sings, it should be derailed.
  23. Who needs rhetorical questions?
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595 thoughts on “≡ THE “HITCHIN’ POST” ………………Talk About Anything ≡

  1. Ross Hill is fairly active on the Salted Pig facebook group. Flaming Gorge is on our trip plan in May as we find our way to CO and southern Utah. That deep crust on your pizza looks like NCPaul’s Detroit Pizza.

    1. Ross and I have swapped a couple of emails recently, I don’t tweet or do any face-time stuff, no apps either. Be ready for wind in Flaming Gorge, seems to start about ten in the morning and last all day, most days anyway. The drive from Green River to FG is loaded with spots you can pull over and glass up some antelope, beautiful view of the Rockies. I know at both Buckboard, and Lucerne on the Utah side, there are quite a few guides who will be available to take you out on the water for some kokanee should you be so inclined. Kokanee are just land-locked Sockeye salmon, I think they taste better than Chinooks. RAY

  2. Hi Fellas, just got done with a batch of Canadian bacon and as usual using the recipe from here it came out excellent. Built a new smoker from and small old chest freezer. Blasted it out with a 2 day “smoke out” of oak and it was good to go. Bought a bunch (4) of cheap cooking probe thermometers (0~250°C Timer Alarm Digital Cooking Thermometer With Stainless Steel Probe ) for seven bucks each. I see I have a 10 degree difference between the top and bottom of the chamber. I just let 2 probes hang at different levels, high and low. Anyone else have this issue? Hot plate is to the side over the previous compressor unit. I was wondering if a small computer fan turned on inside would create a type of convection atmosphere. Smoke/heat source is not below the hanging product. Otherwise I would lay my loins out flat so that we would be in the same temp range. I am asking this due to top of loins were 150 and the bottom was 140. length of loins were about 12 inches. One thing I did really notice I use a lot less wood compared to my little red Brinkmann. Thanks in advance guys. Just reading through some comments, where is Chuckwagon? Hope all is well

    1. Yeah, I see quite a bit of difference in temperature, depending on where in the smoker the temperature probe is. In fact, my “el cheapo” model Masterbuilt routinely ran 20 degrees above setpoint (yikes!), because the thermocouple was a stubby little thing embedded in one of the walls. I finally gave up on it and bought a PID controller with a probe that I could position wherever I want. I put in a couple of cheap probes like you did, Fred, and could read the temperature gradient, but now I know enough to compensate for it. No more rendering fat because of one level being too hot.

      Something else to watch out for: does your temperature controller cycle very widely? The Masterbuilt would go from -5 to +10 degrees around setpoint, which will render the fat if you try to approach 170 degF.. The PID controller snuggles in nicely, +/- 1 degree.

      Regarding computer fans, drop by an electronics store (or look on the internet), and try to find the temperature specs. These little fans aren’t very robust, and might not take the 170 degree target temperature that I try to use to get my sausages’ IMT up to 145-150 degF. I haven’t tried using one, to be honest. …probably should, especially if I can scrounge one for free. Otherwise, they only cost $15 or so. (I know- – I wiped out a couple of ’em in my curing cabinet, due to salt water spray.) …great idea. Just don’t forget to pull the poor thing out before you do a brisket at 275 degF! Basting with molten polystyrene probably isn’t a good idea.

  3. Hi Fred! I’ve got twelve pounds of loins in the Pro 100 myself, same old recipe, should be done this afternoon. I’ve noticed in my Pro 100 smoker there are spot where a 8º-12º temperature difference will occur, top to bottom and even front to back. I use two meat thermometers and just try to reach a happy medium these days, hanging everything at the same height. I’ll pull my loins off at 145º, no ice bath, just cool on the kitchen counter for a few hours before refrigerating. Yeah, where is CW? RAY

  4. Very helpful El Ducko and Ray. I do not use a temperature control. I have a 1000 watt hot plate which has low, medium and high rheostat on hot plate. I use an old small frying pan with a cover to just emit smoke and eliminate flames. I control the heat by that control and venting, works decently. Yes I have access to the little fans and will give it a whirl. Thank You very Much. Hope everyone is well, got some steel head from when I was up north going into the smoker when I have time. Some good stuff when smoked. Good hearing from You guys. 🙂 APB for the Chuckwagon!

  5. I marinated a tritip for four days in Mr Yoshidas teriyaki sauce and webbered it for dinner last night, steak, shrooms, zukes, and a buttery yam. The leftover tri I’ll slice paper thin to make the best sandwich’s on the planet, tritip, Canadian bacon, and Swiss on a fresh-baked roll. I don’t understand folks who pay $6.99lb for tritip with all the fat trimmed off and wonder where the flavor went. I buy 4-5 tri’s in a bag untrimmped for $2.99lb, cook them with the fat on and cut it off when done to a perfect medium-rare. The stuff tastes pretty darned near like prime rib. Fat = flavor! RAY


  6. This morning I’ll begin the process of making 25 pounds of Chicken Italian Sausage with Chardonnay, Black Olives, and Sun-dried Tomato. The new meat mixer that attaches to my 1hp grinder has arrived from Cabelas, looks like a monster. It appears that I’ll have to make a base so the grinder will sit high enough to line up with the new mixing unit, that means a trip to Home Depot. 35 pounds of thighs (99¢lb) to make 25lbs of sausage will require some serious deboning time. What used to take about five hours work now seems to take a couple of days. I figure to have this project wrapped up around Thursday sometime. RAY

  7. Here’s a shot of a one-pound-or-so smoked marinated pork loin end after 5 days in the drink and three hours in the smoker. I used a recipe out of Julia Childs’ cookbook and, since there’s no pink salt in it, went straight to smoking at 275 degF. I brought the marinade to a boil to sterilize it, then added corn starch to thicken it for use as gravy. …wish I could have done it with a roux, but “she who must be obeyed” is gluten intolerant.

  8. DW has made the puff pastry and today I make the suasage mix from Epicurious for a new batch of sausage rolls. Couple of days ago I made my first no-knead loaf of whole wheat bread that was so easy success was almost guaranteed. Making the bread made me think of Ross Hill. I thought that other site had a section for Ross’s baking but couldn’t find it.


  9. There was a section for some of Ross’ baking procedures on the “site which shall not be named”. I couldn’t find it either, most likely removed by the current mods. I’ve been emailing with Ross for a few weeks now since looking him up, he likes my jokes! I think he’s going on 84 years of age now, seems to be doing OK. Nancy’s is not in good health.

    I’ve had a bag of wheat flour sitting on my pantry shelf for about seven years now, still don’t know how or when I’d ever use it, wheat bread always seems so dry. I have taken to making the occasional loaf of rye bread. Canadian bacon and Swiss on rye, good hearty horseradish mustard, hard to beat.

    Boy howdy Duk, that hunk of loin looks scrumptious!! I’ve done some un-cured pulled pork on my Pro 100, it has a max temp of 250º, comes out pretty darned nice. RAY

    1. Yeah, I miss Ross’s frequent presence. I got onto that site and found Ross’s old stuff, but it hasn’t been accessed since 2014! What a shame.
      Supposing I could put up the edited contents of that thread (recipes and most of the pictures), do you think it would be active on our website? It’ll take a bit of work on CW’s and my part, but not too bad. (We have “devious means…”)

    1. I’ll never forget how happy he was to pass on his knowledge. Posted a couple times some pictures of rolls I made with his recipe. He was happy that Ray and I were appreciative of what we learned from him. I know I miss him. He made that nice video on You Tube, cannot find it.


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