I've been lurking in these forums for a while now, but just registered a couple of weeks ago. So I first want to thank everyone for their posts and opinion that I've been reading for so long.
I started my first attempt at making bacon. I got the belly from my butcher, who also raised the pigs himself. Talk about knowing where your food comes from. All organic, no hormones, pesticides, fillers, etc. I had the skin removed to make my job a little easier, then cut the belly into four pieces.
I used a basic dry cure of salt, sugar, and pink salt. Then blended in some flavors - Maple, Honey, Molasses, and Maple-Honey.
Into the fridge for 2 weeks, turning daily.
Rinsed and tested.
Into the smoker, where it sits now. (With a block of cheese for the wife)
I am thinking of letting it smoke for 24 hours. Any suggestions on that would be welcomed. Too long? Not enough time? I value the opinion of this forum. My goal is to move from Padawan Learner, to Apprentice, to Jedi Master.. or to just make some awesome bacon.
After bacon, I plan on trying my hand at making lox. Not the garbage you find in the stores nowadays, but the good stuff we used to get in New York right from the smoke house. But that's a whole different conversation.