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Another "My first bacon"

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

I'm going to use Bear's recipe for my first attempt at some bacon.   I'm getting a couple of bellies from a local business that makes salt cured bacon and country hams.  I believe they're about 20#s each.  Not sure of price, probably between $1.90 & 2.00 per lb.  Since this is my first go, I'm thinking that maybe just do one and see how it comes out.  Should I freeze the other or just keep it in the fridge til I'm ready to make the second?  These are pretty good size with skin.  Got these before and the guy that ran the slaughterhouse I used (went out of business :th_crybaby2:) would brine/cure and smoke 'em.  Now it's my turn.  Gonna use the MES40 I just bought and wondered if I should just put my amnps in with no heat or use real low heat.  Decisions, decisions...  Thanks for any help/suggestions.

post #2 of 13

Bob I used Bears to do one awhile back and I cold smoked it take a look

Richie

 

http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/241579/belly-bacon-start-1-28-16

post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thanks, Ritchie.  Gonna give that a try.  Off topic...happened to score some Taylor Ham down here in TN.  Miss late night diner food!  Food here just isn't the same as the stuff I grew up with (Elizabethport).

post #4 of 13

Let us know how the bacon turns out.

 

Al

post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 

Will do.

post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 

Picked up my bellies (2) yesterday.  Went for $2.10/lb.  Weight is about 21# and 24#.  These are pretty rough, meaning not trimmed at all.  If you can see, the right side has some thick extra meat attached.  I skinned one and cut it in half.  I found that on the thinner parts the fat is that "stringy kind" (don't know what else to call it).  What to smoke these in stages.  Might try a different cure for the second.  Can/should I freeze til then?  Next question is how much should I trim these and what to do with the trim?  I plan on using a wet brine.  I was going to use a 7gal bucket I have, but, it won't fit in my fridge.  Any suggestions for that?  Ok to let it sit in the garage?  I have a meat tub I can use.  No cover...tin foil ok?

 

Anyone else get untrimmed bellies like these?  Love to know how you trim 'em.

 

Thanks for any help/advise.  Looking forward to my first batch...I mean how hard can it be to make bacon. :rolleyes::icon_biggrin:

 

 

 

 

 

post #7 of 13

Bob I think Saran Wrap for the meat lug,avoid chancing a reaction with the cure and foil.

Richie

 

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post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tropics View Post
 

Bob I think Saran Wrap for the meat lug,avoid chancing a reaction with the cure and foil.

Richie

 

110.gif

Thanks, Ritchie.  Didn't think of that (go figure).

post #9 of 13

You could cut them up and bag/zip lock them in the wet brine and then to the fridge.   One method to keep oxygen out of the equation.

post #10 of 13
I've noticed no-one answered the question about freezing. I'm planning a first bacon cure myself, but I don't know if I can get it all in the container. Will freezing hurt the pork belly not used?
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 

From what I read elsewhere, no problem freezing.

post #12 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokeyMose View Post

I've noticed no-one answered the question about freezing. I'm planning a first bacon cure myself, but I don't know if I can get it all in the container. Will freezing hurt the pork belly not used?

SM why not cut what you can and freeze the rest.when you are ready you can thaw and cure another batch.

Richie

post #13 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobrap View Post

From what I read elsewhere, no problem freezing.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tropics View Post

SM why not cut what you can and freeze the rest.when you are ready you can thaw and cure another batch.
Richie
Thanks! I suspected as much but just wanted to check...
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