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# bacon calculator - Page 2

I hope you and others find it useful.  It is a simple Excel spreadsheet, the layout of which I copied from a calculator floating aroung this forum for some time.

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Don't worry about it Al. We all have our days. I remember the cure debacle of a couple weeks ago. Hadn't thought of that when I made the post. I was referring to dry curing with only TQ.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alblancher

Rich,

What kind of cure does BearCarver use in his procedure?

I did some calculations from USDA guidelines to cure bacon with a standard brine.  USDA recommends mixing a cure that will provide 120ppm Sodium Nitrite to the bacon with a 10% increase in the weight of the green bacon. Using this technique the bacon is cured when it has increased in weight by 10%.   I don't do brine when I do bacon so I am not sure if bacon will absorb that much water but it is the recommendation.

Cure mixture for a final 3% salt content of bacon.       1172 grams of salt +  80 grams Cure 1 + 2528 grams of water.  Using this brine when the bacon increase it's green weight by 10% there will be 120ppm Sodium Nitrite and 3% salt in the bacon.   The amount of salt added can be reduced for a lower salt bacon.  If you reduce the amount of salt you need to increase the amount of water to where the total weight of salt, cure and water is  3780 grams This recipe accounts for the salt in Cure 1

Example:  If you begin with 1 kg of no-rind bacon you soak the bacon in the above cure until it's weight when removed from the brine is 1100 grams. If you have a rind on the bacon reduce the final weight by 10% or 1kg green bacon with rind soak until it reaches 1090 grams.

It will take time for the bacon to absorb this brine so cure accelerators are not needed during brining.

If you inject the brine or do a mechanical tumbling or massaging the bacon absorbs the brine much faster and cure accelerators are required.

Please comment if you see any problems with these calculations

Al

From what I've read on here he takes the package and looks on the back and reads the directions, imagine that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alblancher

Rich,

Don't write nothing down yet,  Lets wait for peer review to make sure I am not making some stupid mistakes.  This is still a post in the test section so until I get some of the other members to comment I'm not comfortable with them.  Thanks for the kind words though.   Maybe eventually the wiki will allow people to understand why the numbers are what they are.

Al

Al, why make it complicated? The MFG'S put the directions on the back of the bag !   K.I.S.S.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meateater

Al, why make it complicated? The MFG'S put the directions on the back of the bag !   K.I.S.S.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meateater

From what I've read on here he takes the package and looks on the back and reads the directions, imagine that.

I would hope since that is common sense to you that you would have read the USDA guidelines for the use of nitrate in bacon. Based on your previous responses I am sure it is still beer:30 for you and you will continue with your typical responses. Al made it perfectly clear that he would not consider TQ for this thread and justifiably so. Do some reading for context next time so your response can be on-topic.

Thanks for sharing this Al...cool spreadsheet and it's easy to use!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by solaryellow

I would hope since that is common sense to you that you would have read the USDA guidelines for the use of nitrate in bacon. Based on your previous responses I am sure it is still beer:30 for you and you will continue with your typical responses. Al made it perfectly clear that he would not consider TQ for this thread and justifiably so. Do some reading for context next time so your response can be on-topic.

Hey Solar, what is beer 30? Read the bag and proceed, what's the hard part?  I've made my share of bacon with that procedure.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meateater

Hey Solar, what is beer 30? Read the bag and proceed, what's the hard part?  I've made my share of bacon with that procedure.

Nevermind. It is well past you at this point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by solaryellow

Nevermind. It is well past you at this point.

Get some sleep.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meateater

Get some sleep.

Ironic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by solaryellow

Ironic.

Do you even know what you replied to? Maybe you should go back to post #1 and start over. I have this post save for future reference.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meateater

Do you even know what you replied to? Maybe you should go back to post #1 and start over. I have this post save for future reference.

I sure do. I understand content and context. Future reference? Do you have an axe to grind that you don't want to just come out and admit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by solaryellow

I sure do. I understand content and context. Future reference? Do you have an axe to grind that you don't want to just come out and admit?

Why are you coming out and attacking me on someones elses post? This is a forum for meat. I don't understand the blindsided attack and your aggenda?

This post and calculator are intended to help people that wish to cure bacon using a dry cured method and Cure 1.  I have no problem with people using premixed cures if that is what they want to use.  If I intended this post for premixed cures the first and only entry to the thread would be very simple

"Use manufacturers directions"

If I had intended this thread for people that use Tenderquick It would have been a single post

"I don't use Tenderquick, please refer to someone that does"

This post "was intended"  to compel replies from experienced members of the forum familiar with USDA  cure calculations and dry cure techniques.  This is the first step on the path to a Cure Math Wiki and a Bacon Cure Wiki.

A member asked me in a pm to describe the dry cure procedure I use.  To do that I wanted to complete the calculators for him.

I will copy the dry cure procedure I use  to this  thread for "peer review" before including in the Wiki.

I hope the final Wikis are the result of constructive and civil conversation between members.

FOR PEER REVIEW

BASIC DRY CURE PROCEDURE USING CURE 1

First thing you want to do is make a cure mix using the amounts of cure 1 and salt described in the calculator for the lb weight of bellies you wish to cure.  Remember there are different amounts of cure required for rind on or rind off bacon because the rind does not absorb cure very well.  You will use less cure 1 in your mix if you leave the rind on the bacon

The calculators use weight to measure the cure and salt.  Combine the ingredients and mix well.  A large canning jar with tight fitting lid works well.  Shake the ingredients until the pink color of the Cure 1 is evenly distributed throughout the cure mix.

Rub about 1/3 of the mix evenly/predominantly on the meat side(s) of the bellies.  Wrap in plastic wrap and lay flat in a carboy tray or other plastic tray with the rind side down.  Wait 3 or 4 days to do the next rub with the 2nd third of the cure mix.  Don't dry the bacon at this point but if you lose a bit of moisture that isn't a problem, you will draw small amounts of moisture from the bellies.    Let the curring bacon sit another 3 to 4 days wrapped in saran wrap in the refrigerator.  After this second curing period add the balance of the cure mix.  You may also add any extra salt, sugar and spices at this stage.  3 days later rinse the bacon with fresh water and pat dry with a clean towel.

At this point you may want to do a taste test for salt by frying a small piece. If too salty, soak in fresh water for an hour and taste again.  You can repeat the process until the salt in the bacon is where you want it but this procedure seldom produces bacon most would consider to salty.

If you want a sweet bacon rub again with sugar, honey or syrup and return to the refrigerator or If the additional sugar is not added proceed to the next step to smoke your bacon   I don’t rinse the bacon after the final spice, sugar coating.

Now you just need to determine when you have access to your slow smoker.  I have left the bacon in the refrigerator mellowing out for up to 5 days after my final rub, you can keep to the 3-day minimum if you wish but by now the bacon is fully cured and ready for the smoker

Make sure the bacon is dry by hanging in front of a fan or in the smoker with a low heat but no smoke.  There are Bacon Hangers commercially available or you can use stainless steel wire passed through the bacon and hung on wooden dowels.   You want to develop a pellicle sp? that will hold the smoke on the bacon  The bacon will be dry but tacky to the touch when properly dried.

This step is also up to you.  I have gone as little as 8 hours and as long as 36 hours in cold smoke.  I suggest you smoke the bacon until you get the color you like; I like a mahogany color (deep reddish brown).  Remember to keep your smoker below 110 degrees.  Fat starts to render out at these temps and your finished bacon will be greasy.  The cooler the better for cold smoke but your smoke chamber should remain above 40 degrees.

Store in the refrigerator for several weeks or vacuum pack and freeze.  I find that allowing the cured and smoked bacon to rest several days helps develop the flavors.

There are too many different combinations of spices and sugars to provide one final recipe here.  Salt,Sugar and Spices are not regulated by the USDA and the amounts you use are personal preference.   The basic cure mix and sugar treatment described is a good first step to learn how to dry cure bacon with Cure 1.

Looking good Al

Thanks Al

Quote:
Originally Posted by alblancher

FOR PEER REVIEW

BASIC DRY CURE PROCEDURE USING CURE 1

First thing you want to do is make a cure mix using the amounts of cure 1 and salt described in the calculator for the lb weight of bellies you wish to cure.  Remember there are different amounts of cure required for rind on or rind off bacon because the rind does not absorb cure very well.  You will use less cure 1 in your mix if you leave the rind on the bacon

The calculators use weight to measure the cure and salt.  Combine the ingredients and mix well.  A large canning jar with tight fitting lid works well.  Shake the ingredients until the pink color of the Cure 1 is evenly distributed throughout the cure mix.

Rub about 1/3 of the mix evenly/predominantly on the meat side(s) of the bellies.  Wrap in plastic wrap and lay flat in a carboy tray or other plastic tray with the rind side down Should there be refridgeration at this point? .  Wait 3 or 4 days to do the next rub with the 2nd third of the cure mix.  Don't dry the bacon at this point but if you lose a bit of moisture that isn't a problem, you will draw small amounts of moisture from the bellies.    Let the curring bacon sit another 3 to 4 days wrapped in saran wrap in the refrigerator.  After this second curing period add the balance of the cure mix.  You may also add any extra salt, sugar and spices at this stage.  3 days later rinse the bacon with fresh water and pat dry with a clean towel.

At this point you may want to do a taste test for salt by frying a small piece. If too salty, soak in fresh water for an hour and taste again.  You can repeat the process until the salt in the bacon is where you want it but this procedure seldom produces bacon most would consider to salty.

If you want a sweet bacon rub again with sugar, honey or syrup and return to the refrigerator or If the additional sugar is not added proceed to the next step to smoke your bacon   I don’t rinse the bacon after the final spice, sugar coating.

Now you just need to determine when you have access to your slow smoker.  I have left the bacon in the refrigerator mellowing out for up to 5 days after my final rub, you can keep to the 3-day minimum if you wish but by now the bacon is fully cured and ready for the smoker

Make sure the bacon is dry by hanging in front of a fan or in the smoker with a low heat but no smoke.  There are Bacon Hangers commercially available or you can use stainless steel wire passed through the bacon and hung on wooden dowels.   You want to develop a pellicle sp? that will hold the smoke on the bacon  The bacon will be dry but tacky to the touch when properly dried.

This step is also up to you.  I have gone as little as 8 hours and as long as 36 hours in cold smoke.  I suggest you smoke the bacon until you get the color you like; I like a mahogany color (deep reddish brown).  Remember to keep your smoker below 110 degrees.  Fat starts to render out at these temps and your finished bacon will be greasy.  The cooler the better for cold smoke but your smoke chamber should remain above 40 degrees.

Store in the refrigerator for several weeks or vacuum pack and freeze.  I find that allowing the cured and smoked bacon to rest several days helps develop the flavors.

There are too many different combinations of spices and sugars to provide one final recipe here.  Salt,Sugar and Spices are not regulated by the USDA and the amounts you use are personal preference.   The basic cure mix and sugar treatment described is a good first step to learn how to dry cure bacon with Cure 1.

Good point Eman,  I will make the correction

Thanks

DanMcG made the point that I am using maximum allowable amounts of cure 1 in the calculators.  This should be mentioned somewhere.  He also uses a 1 step process that I agree is perfectly fine.  I don't think the amount of cure mix changes

I would like to include other techniques and recipes in the final Wiki if peer review agrees.

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