Just picked up 12lbs of "pre-bacon" from the butcher. Hoping it will thaw completely before I go to bed so I can get the cure on. My first attempt turned out OK, but I didn't alter the sugar cures recipe on the package at all. It just called for the cure only. It was kinda salty for my taste. I read on here about brown sugar and even maple syrup to mellow out the salt taste. Although I dont really understand the syrup technique, seems like it would block the smoke from getting in the meat. The butcher said to use one part cure and two parts brown sugar, sound right? Im not sure if I want to get too crazy with too many seasonings yet, I want to keep this as simple as I can and get good tasting bacon.
Round 2 begins tonight!
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Are you wet or dry curing? I dry cure, and after rubbing the correct amount of cure on the meat, I add seasonings & flavorings. I just rub the brown sugar onto the meat surface until is it coated -- I don't measure it. Wet curing may be a different thing where cure/sugar ratios are more important.
Soaking your bacon in water after the cure and before the smoke will also cut the saltiness. You can soak up to 24 hours refrigerated. Do a fry test to check for saltiness before smoking. if too salty, soak some more.
The day has finally arrived to smoke my bacon! Feels like Christmas all over again! Did a fry test and it tasted perfect. The brown sugar and soaking made a world of difference. Dropped in the smoker an hour and a half ago, three or so more to go. Will post pics later.
Turned out perfect! I am very pleased with how this turned out. I went ahead and did all of the trimmings with the bellies to use for beans and stuff. Ended up with with 9 1lb packages of nicely cut bacon, 2 1lb bags of end chunks for beans and 1 1lb bag of jacked up cuts that I ended up cubing for baked beans. I think I will give BBB and canadian bacon a try next since the bellies are hard to get in my area.
Loaded up in the GMG
6hrs later @150 degrees got to 140 internal.