|The three new plates on top, with the original|
Kitchen Aid plate on the bottom.
Although I’ve griped repeatedly about the sausage stuffer on the Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer, I really can’t fault the actual meat grinder. The one thing I do find problematic is the choice of grinding plates. You only get two sizes of grinder plates: small but serviceable and too small to use. The grinder plate determines the size of your mince, so if you want a larger, coarse grind, you’re out of luck.
But in “another reason I love the internet” moment, I found like-minded machinists cutting their own custom grinder plates out of stainless steel. While they’re not cheap ($7-9 a plate), they really open up the versatility of the Kitchen Aid. So I purchased three different gauges off ebay. Now I’m excited to try them out on a dry-cured lamb sausage this weekend, which I’d like to make in the style of a coarse-ground sopressata. The middle size will be used for the pork fat, which should produce modest sized pieces, but not the large cubes I hand-cut for my caul fat salami. The largest size would be used for much larger chunks of meat and fat, if I wanted to do a particularly coarse salami.