Friends, yesterday I finally smoked my bacon, what a learning experience!
The piece that I used Bear's recipe on tastes like ham, ...now that's not so bad because I haven't had ham in over 20 years, but I was expecting bacon.
After curing for 11 days, when I did a fry test it, was way too salty, I spit it out and gave it to the cats and they did the same thing. I let it soak in ice water in the fridge for 2 hours, and it was edible, rinsed it off, left it in the fridge overnight and smoked it yesterday. It's still too salty for my tastes so I'll use it in some beans.
The Chinese recipe was also too salty and received the same ice bath treatment, the recipe called for cure #1 but after reading about how hard it would be to rub that small of an amount on 3 pounds of meat I went with TQ and thankfully didn't add any salt. My complaint is the TQ overpowered the rice wine and 5 spice taste, so next time I try this should I use the cure #1 and wet brine it so I don't have so much salt in my cure?
Here's some pics taken with my phone, the batteries are dead in the camera.
Here is the thin blue thanks to Todd's amazing gadget.
This is after they came out of the smoker.
Sorry their aren't more pics, and I can't slice them so into the freezer they go.
I don't believe they are true belly cuts as as you can see they have rib bones still attached to them, Bear's recipe is the one on the left and the two on the right are the Chinese recipe.
Thanks all for the help and advice and thanks for looking.
I'm open to all advice and hints for the next time and there will be a next time!