I have a slab of pork belly that for all intents and purposes I "dry-aged" before I got it in the cure.
The last time I made bacon I wan't able to find any pink salt in my area so I used Morton's "Tender Quick". I thought the resulting bacon was a bit too salty. Last week I bought a slab of pork belly on the spur of the moment at a farmer's market and sent off for some pink salt via mail order. Since I knew it would take a few days to get the salt I decided to "dry age" the pork.I took it out of its wrapper and let it sit exposed in the refrigerator to dry out. I have been doing this with beef a lot lately with great success.
Now that I have thought about it a little more, I realize that after the beef has sat exposed to air in the refrigerator for 5 or so days I cook it right away. With the pork slab I put it back in the fridge for another week, though now it is in some sort of preservative sauce.
I am trying to decide whether to: 1) just toss it, 2) smoke it right away, 3) let it cure for the 7 days and then rinse it and see how it smells before going forward with the smoking.
I also went out and bought a big slab of pork belly from the butcher (since I now have a lifetime supply of pink salt) so I am going to have some good bacon either way, I just don't want to poison my family.