Bacon was curing for 13 days and fridge got above temp?

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wibigfish

Newbie
Original poster
Aug 27, 2020
29
9
Quick question.

Been eq curing some buckboard and belly bacon, about 40lbs worth. All were vacuum sealed and placed in fridge on 12/5.

Most of the bellies should have had sufficient time to cure based on thickness, but I went to fridge this morning and noticed it got up to 43 degrees or so. Temp was running colder 34-35 so I decided to adjust it a bit.

I’m thinking it should be ok because its had sufficient time to cure and the length that it was at that temp was maybe 12 hrs. My thinking is that it should be fine because cold smoking would be at temps slightly above that anyway.

Any input?
 
I just took them out of the packs they smell just fine and are not slimy at all.
Yup sounds good.

One caution I have, and I don’t know when you plan to smoke them, that said, depending on your salt percentage about 4 weeks total time in refrigeration is my limit before they start tasting funky. This includes time after smoke to test. I run a total salt of 1.75% (including.25% cure 1)

I usually shoot for a total time of 14 days cured smoked and rested. This gives me a week or so to slice seal and freeze.
 
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Yup sounds good.

One caution I have, and I don’t know when you plan to smoke them, that said, depending on your salt percentage about 4 weeks total time in refrigeration is my limit before they start tasting funky. This includes time after smoke to test. I run a total salt of 1.75% (including.25% cure 1)

I usually shoot for a total time of 14 days cured smoked and rested. This gives me a week or so to slice seal and freeze.
I took them out and hung them in fridge got it to stay at 38 degrees now so will let them hang overnight and then start smoking tomorrow.

I have to try to fast track some of them unfortunately for Xmas. So will probably do 4hrs one day if smoke then 4 hrs next day. Depending on taste may do a third day, then will let rest in fridge until I have to slice with in will probably be Friday late or Saturday morn.

I appreciate your help, I test fried the thickest buckboard and it was cured all the way through so I don’t think I should have any issues at all.
 
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Sounds good. For most bacon thickness cuts up to 3” thick 14 days is a sweet spot for salt % 1.5-2% I hear you on crunching for Christmas that’s why mine are in the smokehouse today, would have smoked yesterday but was 1*F little too cold.
 
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My garage fridge gets me every year when it gets cold. I have to turn it way down or the freezer gets above freezing and all my stuff starts to thaw. I have to move my eggs to the house fridge in the winter or they will freeze.

I wish I had one that would keep the freezer at an absolute temp rather than just running to cool the fridge side when it needs to be cooled down.

The reason this happens if you haven't experienced it is due to ambient temp outside the fridge. When it's 35 degrees outside your fridge, your fridge will barely need to run to maintain temp. The freezer only gets cold air when the unit is running to keep the cool side cool (on most cheaper models) and so it all starts to thaw - it doesn't have a therm in the freezer that makes it kick on. It can happen quickly.

My garage stays open so I can park my F150 in it, or rather 3/4 of my F150 in it. If you keep your garage door closed it might not affect you as much. My truck is too long for me to park it inside and close the door (because I have too much sh!t in my garage - it would fit {barely} if my garage was empty)


thread hijack over!
 
My garage fridge gets me every year when it gets cold. I have to turn it way down or the freezer gets above freezing and all my stuff starts to thaw. I have to move my eggs to the house fridge in the winter or they will freeze.

I wish I had one that would keep the freezer at an absolute temp rather than just running to cool the fridge side when it needs to be cooled down.

The reason this happens if you haven't experienced it is due to ambient temp outside the fridge. When it's 35 degrees outside your fridge, your fridge will barely need to run to maintain temp. The freezer only gets cold air when the unit is running to keep the cool side cool (on most cheaper models) and so it all starts to thaw - it doesn't have a therm in the freezer that makes it kick on. It can happen quickly.

My garage stays open so I can park my F150 in it, or rather 3/4 of my F150 in it. If you keep your garage door closed it might not affect you as much. My truck is too long for me to park it inside and close the door (because I have too much sh!t in my garage - it would fit {barely} if my garage was empty)


thread hijack over!
It’s a tremendous pain in the rear using the garage fridge. Im in WI, so I know what your saying. I’m not sure if I should just heat my garage or move a fridge downstairs, I like the first choice haha.
 
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Sounds good. For most bacon thickness cuts up to 3” thick 14 days is a sweet spot for salt % 1.5-2% I hear you on crunching for Christmas that’s why mine are in the smokehouse today, would have smoked yesterday but was 1*F little too cold.
I usually run my salt at like 1.9 but bump the sugar to 1.2 or 1.3. For my taste buds it’s the magic ratio.

I’d like to have went a day longer on the cure but the thickest was about 2.5” (I trim the buckboard thinner usually). So 12 days should have been sufficient and I was at 13. Everything appeared cured all the way through with no issue.
 
My curing fridge sometimes hits 40 or a little above for short periods in summer. never been an issue.
 
I usually run my salt at like 1.9 but bump the sugar to 1.2 or 1.3. For my taste buds it’s the magic ratio.

I’d like to have went a day longer on the cure but the thickest was about 2.5” (I trim the buckboard thinner usually). So 12 days should have been sufficient and I was at 13. Everything appeared cured all the way through with no issue.
It was all cured about day 7 but that extra time balances the flavors and is worth the wait. You are on the right path and will enjoy this successful curing.
 
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Sounds good. For most bacon thickness cuts up to 3” thick 14 days is a sweet spot for salt % 1.5-2% I hear you on crunching for Christmas that’s why mine are in the smokehouse today, would have smoked yesterday but was 1*F little too cold.
Sorry for the dumb question here. But when you brine your pork belly you slice it into 3" sections ( lack of better terms) meaning a full belly is about 21" long you slice it into 7 chunks and then brine? Or am I reading too much into this. Just asking, as I've made bacon once and want to start again
 
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Sorry for the dumb question here. But when you brine your pork belly you slice it into 3" sections ( lack of better terms) meaning a full belly is about 21" long you slice it into 7 chunks and then brine? Or am I reading too much into this. Just asking, as I've made bacon once and want to start again
I believe SmokinEdge SmokinEdge is referring to the thickness of the belly and not the length.
I wish I could find a 3" thick belly!
You can certainly cut the 21" down to 2 or maybe three pieces but I wouldn't go with 7!
Also you don't know what you don't know. Someday you will be able to pass on sage advice for another beginner so no such thing a dumb bacon question!
 
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Sorry for the dumb question here. But when you brine your pork belly you slice it into 3" sections ( lack of better terms) meaning a full belly is about 21" long you slice it into 7 chunks and then brine? Or am I reading too much into this. Just asking, as I've made bacon once and want to start again
I’m talking about thickness not length. The dry rub method is good up to about 3” thick, some do buckboard bacon and it’s easy to cut 4” thick, but once that thick you need to inject with a curing brine. Keeping things simple, most belly or fresh side, is 1-2” thick and is perfect for a dry rub cure. I cure my bellies whole 21”x16”x2” as an example of size. Once cured I then trim them and cut to final size for slicing and save the trimmings as ends and pieces for beans and such.
 
Just a hint on garage fridge in winter, pop out the door switch and let it hang. This will keep the light on which is enough to keep it cold even in below 0 temps. Don't forget to put the switch back when it warms back up.
 
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