There will be bacon....Old Bay-con

Discussion in 'Curing' started by mdboatbum, Jan 26, 2015.

  1. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Got a very generous gift certificate to a rather pricey butcher shop for Christmas, so seeing as they're the only convenient place to find pork bellies around here, I figured I'd make some bacon.

    I had received a "bacon kit" as a gift a couple years ago which included the seasonings (Maple) and cure for 5lb of belly, so figured I'd use that. I got a little over 8lb of belly, so for the leftover bit (1.6lb after my bad skinning job) I tried a little experiment. Having spent a good chunk of my life on the Chesapeake, Old Bay is not so much a spice around here as it is a required, life sustaining nutrient. I mixed it half and half with Turbinado sugar, added the appropriate amount of pink salt and rubbed it on the slab. If it works out, I'll DEFINITELY be making more.

    The process was pretty straightforward, just wash, skin, trim, rub and wait. It'll be ready to come out of the cure Wednesday and I'm planning to smoke it Friday.

    My wife was COMPLETELY freaked out by what she refers to as "the nubbins".

    Stay tuned...
  2. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    What's the pump for ???  
  4. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Weird. I have no idea where the picture of the red pump came from. Tapatalk must've mixed it up.

    Last edited: Jan 26, 2015
  5. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Just did a fry test on the one with the Old Bay. Not too bad. The piece cut from the edge had a more pronounced flavor, while the interior piece barely tasted like Old Bay at all. I'll rub it with more Old Bay when I put it in the smoker but I'm calling it a win.
    The maple bacon had a half dollar sized bright pink spot in the middle of the meat side, so I'm gonna let it cure another day just to be sure.
  6. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Forgot to update this. Not real happy with the results. The old bay stuff is ok, not great. The interior slices are pretty much flavorless. The maple stuff is kinda the same. Not a lot of flavor and the texture is not what I wanted. It's either chewy like jerky or burnt. I know somewhere in the middle is a sweet spot, but I haven't found it yet. I'll try baking it, that might help. I did slice across the grain as far as I could tell. Cold smoked it with apple for 4 hours. I know that's not nearly as much as most of you do, but the smoke flavor is actually the best part. It's definitely there but not overpowering. It's the lack of any other flavor that worries me. Oh well, I'll try it again.
  7. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

  8. inkjunkie

    inkjunkie Master of the Pit

    From what I have been reading cold smoking bacon requires days worth of smoke...
  9. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Not necessarily, it depends on the color and density of the smoke and the desired finished results.   It normally takes + - 72 hours to get the desired color on mine all while the smoke begins it's equalization process.  The smoke is piped into the smoker from a remote location.  The smoke generator produces what amounts not much more than a lit cigar.

  10. Looks pretty Tasty  Nice 


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