I bought 5 lbs pork belly . Before i saw the cure calculator i found a cure recipe in the book Charcuterie. Using 50 grams of kosher salt and 50 grams of brown sugar with 12 grams of pink salt. Been turning it over every other day. Here is my7 question how stiff should it be and how much moisture will extract? I am on day 5 of the cure and am curious should i end the cure after day 7 let it dry and cold smoke it?
slab bacon curing how stiff?
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Go by the directions in the book you are using. If the bacon is not wrapped in a zip lock and you are allowing the moisture to drain it will firm up pretty well. I would think that if you put all the cure on in one application you can get by with 5 or 6 days minimum but you can always coat with additional sugar and allow to draw more moisture with more time. Once it is cured and still refrigerated you have a good deal of flexibility with time.
How did the cure amounts compare to the cure calculator?
Akern, I want to respond to your pm on the forum because I think that it is helpful for everyone to know how to do the calculations. If you are not comfortable with the bacon calculator or can not use it because you do not have Excell you can do them by hand. Any questions just ask
I would not go any lower then 120 ppm I am using 200 ppm in the calculations
200 ppm = 0.000200
amt of cure * 0.0625
0.000200 = 453.6 453.6 is one lb of meat in grams
0.000200 * 453.6
amt of cure = .0625
1.4508 grams of cure 1 for one lb of rindless bacon
this is to small a number to weigh on a scale so make enough cure mix for maybe 20 lbs add salt and sugar. The number I have (using the calculator at 200 ppm) for 20 lbs of bacon with no rind, 3% salt are
272 grams salt
29 grams Cure 1
136 grams sugar
Make this mix, shake very well to evenly distribute the ingredieants This makes a cure mix for 20 lbs. Now you can determine how much cure mix you need for the amount of belly you have
21.8 grams of mix per lb of belly Check my math
Remember this is using Cure 1. If using a different type of cure you may need to adjust the calculation for the different amounts of Sodium Nitrite in the cure. I.E. Cure 1 is 6.25 percent or 0.0625 Sodium Nitrite of Cure 1 (Prague Powder 1, Instacure 1)
The reasons I recommend using weights instead of volume are:
More often then not a new cook will use a mounded spoon instead of a level spoon.
Measuring multiple spoons tends to introduce error
Grams are more easily scalable i.e the amount of cure mix required for 7.55 lbs of meat is 21.8 grams of mix * 7.55 lbs of belly is 164.6 grams of mix instead of
1/4 t * 7.55 lbs is 7.55/4 = 7 1/4ts + 1/8t
It's just easier (in my opinion) to pour a cure mix onto a scale then it is to measure it out with measuring spoons
Just a note: If using rind on bacon reduce the amount of cure by 10 percent. Multiply the above quoted amounts of cure by 0.9 to get the accurate amount of cure required. I recommend adjusting the amount of cure mix (cure, salt and sugar combination) used instead of the amount of Cure 1 in the cure mix so the cure mix can be used for both rind on and rind off bacon.
One more thing, using a scale will impress your kids and family. HeHe
Edited by alblancher - 4/25/12 at 4:12am
Thanks Alblancher, i just did the numbers for 5 lbs of pork belly like what i have and found out i used too much cure. I came up with 7.25 grams of cure 1 now i know and will surely breakout my scale and calculator to impress people with this lol.
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We use a curing salt (Moguntia supacure for info) at a ratio of 45 grams per kilo of pork (for both streaky bacon from the belly, cured with the skin on, and back bacon, which I think is Canadian Bacon in the US, cured without the skin and only as much fat as you want on the finished product). So for a typical bag of three pieces of loin we're looking at 2.5 kilos, so around 135 grams of salt. I add the salt to the bag, hold the neck closed and shake it around to get the salt everywhere (sort of like those plain crisps you add salt to) then vacuum pack it and leave for 10 - 14 days, turning once or twice during that time. When it's done it's slightly less floppy than before it went into curing, but still malleable. If you're having trouble cutting it when it's too floppy (either by hand or on a slicing machine) just pop the whole piece in the freezer for an hour to firm it up. Frosting it up also makes skinning cured bellies easier, if you're taking the rind off that is.