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Cold Smoked Belly Bacon...With Q-View

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

I picked up a skinless belly from my local butcher a few weeks ago for $2.24 a lb. and started my bacon adventure. The belly weighed in at just under 10 lbs and after a trim it weighed just over 9.3 lbs. I cut the belly in three pieces and used tenderquick and brown sugar for my dry cure.008.JPG

 

Here is the belly cut into three pieces. I weighed each piece and then weighed the correct amount of Tenderquick for each piece. I apply the Tenderquick first so i can see it is applied evenly and then i apply the brown sugar at a rate of about a tablespoon a pound. These pieces are then put into separate zip-lock bags with any Tenderquick or brown sugar that fell off during bagging and applying the dry ingredients. The bags of bellies were put in the frig and flipped and massaged once a day for 7 days. These bellies were just under 2 inches thick at the thickest part and i was taught that you cure with Tenderquick at a rate of 1 day per half inch of thickness plus 2 days for safety sake. I added a extra day because my schedule didn't allow me to be home after six days. After a 7 day ride my bacon was removed from the bags...washed off...then soaked for a hour in ice cold water. Then i cut a few pieces from the bellies and did a fry test.021.JPG

 

I'm glad i did the fry test because my wife and i both agreed the bacon was a bit salty for our taste. Back in fresh ice water for another 45 minutes...another fry test ...perfect. The bellies were then dried off...put on bakers racks and off to the frig overnight to form a good pellicle. This bacon was then true cold smoked in my MES 30 for 24 hours using hickory dust in my AMNPS. The smoker never got below 39 degrees and went to a high of 46 degrees. Cold smoking doesn't bring the deep color that smoking bacon with a bit of heat does but i can tell you the excellent smoke flavor sure is there. After the 24 hour cold smoke the bacon was wrapped and sent to the fridge for a 24 hour rest. I believe this is a important step as it lets the smoke meld with your bacon like we do with smoked cheese. It's time for the bacon to hit the slicer...

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The bacon was put in the freezer for 2 hours before hitting the slicer and this really helps with making the bellies easier to slice.

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And the slicing begins...it sure was a nice meaty belly. I already have a call in to the butcher for my next 2 bellies and the good news is they went down 15 cents a pound.

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Start of the 9 pounds of smoked bacon...this stuff is awesome. I packaged it up with the new vacuum sealer my wife got me for Christmas and maybe it will last a few weeks around the house. I have my doubts though as my brother showed up at breakfast Saturday and made his way out of the door with 2 lbs.011.JPG

 

Here it is all bagged up and ready for the freezer...note the 2 bags of ends and pieces on the top and top right. These are a awesome addition to Dutch's Wicked Baked Beans...potato soup...bean soup...etc. etc. etc. Thanks for sharing my bacon makin ride...it is time consuming but  well worth the effort!!!

Len

post #2 of 19

That looks excellent, I need to find a lace to get belies here.

post #3 of 19
Looks great!! Will be cold smoking a belly on Sunday
. Come out of the brine saterday. Cant wait to try some
post #4 of 19

Great job on the bacon. I just did a batch a few weeks back and I have been eating the crap out of it lately.

post #5 of 19

That's some good lookin' belly. Nice and meaty. 

post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by RdKnB View Post

That looks excellent, I need to find a lace to get belies here.


Thanks Rd...we a blessed with some fine butcher shops in the area. It sure is nice to get quality meat.

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by jrod62 View Post

Looks great!! Will be cold smoking a belly on Sunday
. Come out of the brine saterday. Cant wait to try some


Thanks jrod...hope your smoke turns out great. Homemade belly bacon is awesome.

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by rbranstner View Post

Great job on the bacon. I just did a batch a few weeks back and I have been eating the crap out of it lately.


Thank you Ross...i know what your saying...i should have made he wife a few bacon roses for Valentines Day...lol

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by gersus View Post

That's some good lookin' belly. Nice and meaty. 

Thanks Gersus...that's the reason i ordered 2 more. Hope they look just like this one.
 

 

post #7 of 19

drool.gifReally good looking bacon

post #8 of 19

Everything looks GREAT from where I'm sitting. By the way, the color looks good, too. I'd say your project was a complete success!!!

post #9 of 19

Inspiring!  Got me going on a batch today - thanks for posting...looks great!

 

 

 

John

post #10 of 19

Isn't success sweet? That's some really good looking bacon! Nice job.

post #11 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scrappynadds View Post

drool.gifReally good looking bacon



Thanks Scrappy....it's fun to share q-views with the smoking brotherhood!!



Quote:
Originally Posted by Luv2Q View Post

Everything looks GREAT from where I'm sitting. By the way, the color looks good, too. I'd say your project was a complete success!!!

Thank you for the positive feedback Luv2Q. Heat helps with the rich deep color but the flavor is all there with a cold smoke.
 

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by jjwdiver View Post

Inspiring!  Got me going on a batch today - thanks for posting...looks great!

 

 

 

John

 

Thanks John...Hope your bacon turns out awesome. I'll be looking for the q-view!!



Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinHusker View Post

Isn't success sweet? That's some really good looking bacon! Nice job.

Smokin..Thank you. It is nice to share and enjoy our smoking projects. I need to get more curing!!
 

 

post #12 of 19
Looks great.
post #13 of 19

Very nice bacon..

post #14 of 19
Thread Starter 


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmudd14474 View Post

Looks great.


Thanks Brian...sure is a leg up on store bought bacon..excellent smokey flavor.

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by Roller View Post

Very nice bacon..


Roller thank you for the encouraging words..

 

post #15 of 19

Awesome! bet you don't buy it at the store anymore.

post #16 of 19

The bacon looks great, nice job!!

post #17 of 19

Great Looking Bacon!

 

Todd

No Creosote! A-Maze-N Smokers

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post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by teeznuts View Post

Awesome! bet you don't buy it at the store anymore.


Teeznuts...It sure is nice getting quality smokey bacon for half price doing it yourself. I don't know where the meaty bellies like these go but you never see this kind of bacon in a store.

 



Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokinAl View Post

The bacon looks great, nice job!!



Thank you Al...just finished a BLT for lunch. I swear bacon gets better with time.



Quote:
Originally Posted by TJohnson View Post

Great Looking Bacon!

 

Todd


Thanks Todd...I'm a real fan of the AMNPS filled with hickory dust. Hope you never stop grinding that Dust!!!!

 

post #19 of 19

Awesome thanks got some coming out of cure today found this very helpful .....i hope mine looks that good thanks for the post

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