Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
Agriculture, Forestry, Horticulture, Fishery, Domestic Science, Nutrition
Process Engineering, Biotechnology, Nutrition Technology
Green hams were left intact, partially skinned, fully skinned, and fully skinned and boned. They were dry-cured with or without nitrate and aged 3 months. The presence of nitrate had no effect on the variables studies. Percent moisture loss and accompanying weight loss increased with each further removal of protective fat and skin. Percent residual salt was in proportion to weight loss. Residual nitrite was low for all groups Color and aroma scores were similar for all groups. General appearance scores, however, were lowest for the drier boneless group. Shear values were greatest while organoleptic flavor and over-all satisfaction scores were lowest in the boneless group. Tenderness scores were similar for the skinless and boneless group but both were lower than for the intact or partially skinned groups. In general, microbial counts were highest for surface samples from completely skinned fresh hams and lowest for partially skinned fresh hams. Higher counts were obtained for core samples from boneless fresh hams than for intact hams. Aerobic (26° and 37°C), lactobacilli, enterococci. streptococci. yeast and mold surface, and core counts tended to decrease during the manufacture of aged dry-cured hams. No trends in counts due to ham group or cure treatment were observed during the manufacturing process. At the end of the aging period none of the hams contained bacteria of public health significance. Aged dry-cured hams of acceptable microbial quality can be manufactured using intact, partially skinned, skinned or boneless fresh hams without potassium nitrate as part of the cure mixture.
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