Lots of guys asking about bacon again, so I thought I would post my Bacon Cure Recipe
I've made many batches of Belly Bacon & BBB, and this is the recipe I use.
It's taken some trial and error to get here, but this is what we like.
I use Country Brown Cure, and follow the instructions
You can use Cure #1 or Morton's TQ, but follow the manufacturers instructions carefully!
BACON CURE RECIPE
12# Pork Bellies or Pork Shoulder
4 oz. Country Brown Cure(.32 oz. Cure/lb. Meat Adjust for Amount of Meat)
1 Cup Brown Sugar
2 tsp. Allspice(Optional Ginger)
2 TBSP Cracked Black Pepper(CBP)
2 tsp. Garlic Powder
2 tsp. Onion Powder
2 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
1 TBSP Kosher or Sea Salt(Optional 2-3 TBSP Salt)
Mix all ingredients thoroughly in a bowl. If brown sugar has clumps, break them up.
Spread dry cure mix liberally on all exposed meat.
Place in ZipLoc bag and in fridge for 10 days & turn daily.
The meat will “Sweat” as moisture is drawn out. This will mix with the dry cure and spices to form a brine solution. If the meat does not “Sweat”, add 1-2 oz. of water to each bag. I add 1-2 oz. of water upfront.
Remove from the fridge after 10 days and rinse thoroughly under cold water. Test fry and if salt is too strong, soak for an hour in cold water.
Towel dry and place in fridge overnight, to form pellicle. You can speed up this process by placing slabs in front of a fan, or hang inside smoker for approximately 1 hour without smoke.
I prefer to “Cold Smoke” Slab Bacon or BBB for 12 hours at temps under 100°, but you can also “Hot Smoke” at higher temps. I’ve also had great success smoking BBB at 140° - 160°, to an internal temp of 120°. Again, 8-12 hours of good clean smoke is necessary. The color should be almost “Mahogany Red” as it nears completion.
Allow the smoked bacon slabs to sit overnight, in the fridge, in-order for the smoke to mellow. I like to slice my bacon thick, so I set my slicer at about 1/8".
Ends and pieces will have a stronger smoke flavor, and can be used for beans or other foods, where bacon is used.
- Before the pellicle is formed, sprinkle Cracked Black Pepper(CBP) liberally on one side.
- Spread Honey or Maple syrup on one side, with or without CBP
- Substitute 1/2 cup Maple Sugar for 1/2 cup brown sugar
- Inject slabs with a diluted mixture of Real Maple Syrup and water