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2nd Bacon. Pops brine. OK Joe

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Well I just got a fresh whole hog yesterday and decided to get some bacon started right away. The first batch from 2 weeks ago turned out fantastic but it's already gone and I have since gotten a new smoker so here it goes:

Started with 2 cuts from the belly. Keep in mind that I am in no way skilled with a knife so my cuts are quite crude. Also... Processed this hog in a hurry and didn't notice until the last minute we were out of freezer tape ....so electrical tape it was!

Slab 1 is about 5.2lbs.

Slab 2 is about 4 lbs.

Using Pops Brine again. Last time I used 1/2 Cup sea salt but this time I am using 2/3 cup of salt. Using 1 heaping tbsp of #1 cure plus an extra small pinch.

Using LEM #1 cure from Bass Pro Shop.

All The dry ingredients in my small cooler. The cooler is perfect size to hold all the meat and fits nicely in the fridge.

Bellies ready for brining. Rinsed and light trimming.

And into The brine. I laid a zip lock bag with water on top to submerge the bacon, then closed the lid on the cooler, and put it in the fridge where it will sit for 11 days. See you then!
post #2 of 6

110.gif  The waiting is the hard part  :pepsi:

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Well due to my work schedule last week the bacon stayed in the cure for an extra couple days... 13 days total. Pulled it out of The fridge this morning and soaked it in a cold water bath for about an hour. Then I gave it another rinse of cold water and dried the bellies off good with some towels.

Now I am putting them in The fridge uncovered until tomorrow. The weather here in iowa should be nice for some smokin!
Also today I got my late birthday/early fathers day gift of 2 New Maverick ET 732 which I can't wait to try out tomorrow. Boil tested them this morning and both probes on both thermometers tested exactly 212* so they are ready to go!
I'll be smoking on my original Oklahoma Joe tomorrow using applewood.
Stay tuned!
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Smoking day is here!
Started a chute of Royal Oak lump around 10 this morning. Threw on 4 applewood logs.
The new maverick are working nicely. I set max bbq temp on both at 235 and min at 215. The food max is set to go off at 155.
The troubles I have had with maintaining good smoke and temp in the reverse flow Oklahoma Joe are continuing today but it's getting better. I am running 201 on the left side of the meat right now and 217 on the FB side of the meat and medium amount of white smoke out of the stack... A little more than I would like at this point. FB vent is wide open.

Time to go mow and check back in later!
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Not much interest in this thread but I'll follow through with it anyway.

Bacon smoked for about 3.5 hours to 160*. I finally got the smoker dialed in with the new thermometers. The chamber lid thermometers boil test good but I must have cold spot in the top of the chamber because the mavericks were about 80* warmer at the grate than the lid temps.

Just before pulling from the smoker:

Wrapped up in plastics wrap and put it in the fridge for 24 hours.
Then the freezer for 2 hours before slicing. One slab was 4lbs and the other 3.5 after smoking. Ready to slice:

And The final pic... These are The last of The pieces. Already had all the good slices packaged.

Fried up some pieces and I think it still needs a little more salt. I'll go with 3/4 cup next time. Great Apple smoke flavor and quite sweet. Very good though!
post #6 of 6

That's beautiful! Thanks for the step by step guide. I'm on day 7 of my first cure for bacon. Can't wait to get them in the smoker, I want bacon...!

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