That is going to be fantastic!
Well done Chris! Please let us know how she slices and tastes.
That looks fantastic. I hope it tastes as good as it looks. What kind of wood did you use to smoke it?
Jim, I just tried it for the first time. It sliced up very well kind of firm but tender. Color and flavor were good. Between the sugar in the cure and the brown sugar, it seemed like a lot, but finished product has a really nice balance between sweet, savory and smokey. I have to admit that flavor was much more intense and "bacony" than even the most expensive commercial bacon that I've tried. I think it's going to be hard to go back to store bought.
saf, I smoked it for 2 1/2 hours at between 200 and 250 with apple wood chunks. I used one big and one small piece on each side of the bacon. I think it's going to be a matter of taste and experimentation as to how much of a smoke component I want in the bacon.
The larger (kind of even slab) piece will go for bacon slices. The end piece will get cut up for lardons, larger chunks for braising etc.
Gentlemen, any thoughts on what I can use the skin for?
Eat it. I love chicharones
Ok. Maybe a dumb question but this will cook the bacon won't it?
Need help? Ask a Mod
Please help support Badger and Blade.
The Vietnamese use porks skin in a lot of thing I would look that direction.
I am glad it worked out for you.
I'm not sure of the exact food science behind this though or how commercial bacon is smoked or prepared prior to sale.
Don't quote me but my understanding is that by smoking to that temp is killing the bacteria and preserving it. Its basically fatty jerky at that point. A butcher shop I go to does their bacon this way and it just sits out not kept cold. Smoking takes the moisture out but since its mostly fat it doesn't look different and will render the same.
It will cook differently however than most store bought since they brine it and add water and the smoke is usually liquid smoke. Yours will not shrink nearly as much which means more bacony goodness for you.
One of my fav ways of doing bacon now is rosemary black pepper candied bacon mmmmmmmmmm
The salt cure also preserves it. The salt draws out the moisture, keeping the microorganisms from growing and keeps the meat from going rancid. The sugar encourages the growth of good bacteria, and the nitrates in the curing salt furthers the prevention against rancidity. Cold smoking furthers the dehydration process, and hot smoking cooks the food. 150 deg is pretty close to fully cooked.
I once saw Alton Brown make jerky, and he ate the beef right out of the brine and then dehydrated it with box fans. No cooking at all. I've also heard that in Italy, they'll eat pancetta earlier in the cure than we would think of, and with no cooking.
My dog is not happy. Fortunately, I've set up this early warning trip-wire system of empty PBR cans in the kitchen to ward her off.
I'll try most things but didn't fancy that!
Try everything in life except incest & morris dancing - Guy Warrack (1900-86).
Man that looks good. It sure looks like it would make a great breakfast, some fresh brown eggs and wheat toast. Damn, why did I look at this thread.
I didn't surrender, they made my horse surrender though.
Walter Havens, proud member of the Brotherhood of the Open Comb
Bringer of the Badger. "it's my job"
Sure looks darn tasty good job!!