Discoloration in Curing Bellies?

Discussion in 'Smoking Bacon' started by jnyswlhngmeat, Jun 2, 2016.

  1. jnyswlhngmeat

    jnyswlhngmeat Newbie

    Hello and good day, 

    Find myself in need of some advice. While curing bellies for bacon and pancetta i have recently noticed a greenish hue developing in small areas of the bellies. My cure is a simple salt, brown sugar and #1 mixture for bacon. I cure in vac bags normally. I thought maybe the bags may have been contaminated somehow, so i did a batch just wrapping in film. Discoloration still happened. So, i used new ingredients for the cure in case there was contamination there. Not the source either. I have even gone as far to source pigs from a different farm in the case something was wrong there. Not it. I started adjusting my ratios of ingredients. Not it. My normal cure recipe is 2oz Kosher Salt, 2oz Brown Sugar and 2tsp #1 ( recipe per 5# of belly.) Anyone have any insight as to what is occuring? Its not spoilage, there is no odor or flavor difference. The color remains after smoking. 


  2. lonestar10

    lonestar10 Newbie

    I'd try a longer curing time. Something similar happend to me on my first bacon. I dry cured two batches from the same belly. The first I stopped after seven days and it didn't have the distinctive pink color all the way thru. The second I left for ten days and it was perfect.

    I suppose if they're kinda thick you might try injecting...

    I'm a noob so the old pros may have other insight here.

  3. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I never had that happen with my TQ, but having nothing to do with your problem, I think 5 pounds calls for 1 tsp of Cure #1.

    Sorry I can't help you with the color problem.

    Last edited: Jun 3, 2016
  4. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    The use of TQ may produce the color you are mentioning. It is caused by the way light is striking the meat and is not unusual.

    The following was taken from the link below.

    Meat contains iron, fat, and other compounds. When light hits a slice of meat, it splits into colors like a rainbow. There are various pigments in meat compounds that can give it an iridescent or greenish cast when exposed to heat and processing. Wrapping the meat in airtight packages and storing it away from light will help prevent this situation. Iridescence does not represent decreased quality or safety of the meat.


    Hope this answered your question.


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