First back bacon

Discussion in 'Smoking Bacon' started by bladebuilder, Oct 14, 2014.

  1. Hey guys. So gonna try a Canadian back bacon. Starting with Pops brine. First question I have is with regards to fat. I picked up a whole loin to use for chops or roasts, but there was a good amount I internal fat. I put what was left in the freezer, till I was ready to do bacon. Is the extra fat a deal breaker when it comes to how the fat helps/hinders the curing process. Is it a personal preference thing? I see pictures of CB here, and for the most part, it's all trimmed lean. My thoughts so far, is this will be like a regular bacon, when slice to fry, just a lot wider... What are your personal preferences as far as curing process, and finished product?
  2. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    The Loins I get don't have a lot of internal fat. They have a thin fat cap on them & a little mass of fat at the pointed end.

    Most guys trim the fat cap off, but since it isn't very thick, I only trim off the stuff that's ready to fall off.

    It won't effect the curing process, and personally, I like the flavor the fat gives it.

    Here's some pics:

    Boneless Cured & Smoked Pork Chops and Canadian Bacon       

    Last edited: Oct 14, 2014
  3. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Never really heard of internal fat in a loin. Do you mean it's cometely untrimmed like a rib roast? Every loin I've seen is just the long muscle with almost zero internal fat. There is usually fat around the outside, and that's your preference if you want to trim or not. To answer your question, no, fat won't interfere with the cure. If you get a chance put up a picture of this piece of meat. You've got me curious.
  4. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Haha, Bear beat me to the punch. Guess we were typing at the same time. Sorry for the duplicate answers.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2014
  5. Hey Blade, the back bacon up here usually has about 1/8"-1/4" of fat on it, but you can also find it without fat. The fat isn't a deal breaker, it will just slow down cure penetration. It comes down to personal preference. I like it with less fat, sliced ~1/4" for sammies. Finished product ends up more like ham than bacon.

    I like the pops brine CB, and I just finished a batch from Shooters recipe here on the forum. Both are really good. The wife preferred the recent batch.
  6. So these are the ends. One looks like just a thick fat cap, the other is likely the same, with just a layer of red meat on top.
    I don't mind some fat, as mentioned, adds flavor. Pork fat rules!!

    I will thaw it out tonight, trim down the thick cap, and go from there. With pops brine, if I read correctly, there is no worry going a few days longer?
  7. So my cure came in ( got mixed up originally, and had Prague 2 come) now this one shows up. Advertised as Prague 1, it shows up with 6.4% nitrite. Could I kindly ask you gents for some assistance, figuring the correct amount to use per pound for dry and wet cures? I know it's written on the label, but I would like a little confirmation. Here is the label.

  8. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  9. Perfect! Thanks guys!

    I have some maple sugar that I plan to replace half the brown sugar with. Now to figure which herbs/spices to add to the brine. Suggestions welcomed! :)
  10. Ok. So after reading a bunch here on the subject, I decided to go simple for the first run. I did a couple things different.

    Here is a breakdown in grams, so in the future, changes are simpler.

    Based on a US gallon = 3785 grams, i used:
    3785 grams water
    165 grams kosher salt
    130 grams of pure maple sugar
    200 grams dark brown sugar
    1720 grams of pork loin

    6000 grams total weight of brine and meat x 0.000120 Ppm / 0.064 % nitrite = 11.25 grams cure (The Prague powder I got was 6.4% nitrite)

    I completely mixed the brine, then injected in several places, recovering the run off, maintaining the proportions. Purchased a new container for the purpose, now the waiting game.

    My tunnel vision, while preparing/trimming the loin, mixing/weighing ingredients had me forgetting to take photos, but here are the 2 pieces in the brine.

    Last edited: Oct 16, 2014
  11. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Looking good to me... I'd eat it... Dave
  12. Thanks Dave!! I just ordered an A-Maze-N package #3. Hope it gets here soon!!

    Also gonna build a cedar smokehouse. Not in time for this bacon, but hopefully in time for the next!
  13. So today is the day. After removing the loins from the brine, and rinsing them. I did the recommended test fry. A nice mix of sweet and salty. neither overpowering. this is gonna be good! 24 hours on a rack in the fridge to dry up. It the smoker in the morning!

    So at 0-DARK-30 I fired up the A-Maze-N pellet smoker with maple pellets, and set it all out in my offset smoker/grill. (You can see why I need a new smokehouse!)

    We have thin blue smoke! Thils little AMNPS is pretty sweet!

  14. So after 4 hours of cold smoke, (45 degrees) I upped the temp in the smoker to 150 for 2 hours, then 180 for 2, and 200 till internal temp was 150. (actually hit 156) I was busy eating dinner. ;)

    Sorry for the poor light photo, after a day or so in the fridge to mellow out, I will get better ones. The color isnt as dark as the photo shows... Not sure why.

    Has a nice maple smell, and a decent, clean smoke smell. Not overpowering at all. Gotta say I am pleased for a first attempt! Thanks for the help guys!

  15. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    looks good to me..... I'd eat it.....

  16. SUCCESS!! Wow this was good! I would go with a tad more salt next time, but for a first go, I'm happy to say the smokehouse I'm building will get some lovin'!

    Natural light photo, nice even pink color.

    And of course, the fry!

    Thanks everybody who chimed in to help me on this quest. I appreciate it!
    c farmer and bearcarver like this.
  17. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Looks perfect.     [​IMG]

  18. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Oh Yeah!!![​IMG]

    That's my kind of Canadian Bacon!!--------[​IMG]

    How 'bout slicing some a little thinner & fax it to me!![​IMG]

    Better get some more started!!

    Last edited: Nov 3, 2014
  19. red dog

    red dog Smoking Fanatic

    That's some pretty bacon right there! [​IMG]

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