I've been reading and reading, and since I don't want to do anybody in, I'm being really cautious about this first batch of bacon. I cured it using bearcarver's notes in his signature. Today has been 4 days. The belly was pretty thin--just a shade over an inch at it's thickest. If it's a day per 1/2 inch then add 2 days for good measure, it should be ready to go in the cold smoker tomorrow.
But how do I know the bacon is ready?? It doesn't look any different. I got very little moisture out of it--a lot less than I've seen in pictures on smoking forums I've been looking at. What does a cured bacon look/smell/feel like? Is there anyway to tell that it is actually ready? I"m just a little leery about the whole thing. It's only a two pound piece, so it's not going to break the bank if it hasn't worked. I just don't want to make anybody sick.
Can anybody help me out here?