Here is Old Hoss,my version of a fridge smoker.She may look like hell but she will turn out some of the best smoked items I ever ate.In the pic she is full of hams that I cured using the sugar cure.They turned out wonderfull.
Hey Dutch,I use the sugar cure method when I do Hams and bacons.
Sugar Cure for 25 lbs.of meat
5 Quarts ice water 38-40 F
1 lb. salt
1 1/4 cups dextrose[corn sugar]
2/3 cup Instacure #1 [Purchased from The Sausage Maker]
I disolve all this in 40 deg. ice water with the hams at an internal temp of 38-40 deg.Weigh your green ham or bacon and using a large injector needle pump them with 10% cure by weight of the green weight.A 10 lb. ham would get 1 lb. of the liquid cure.Using the same portions as above,minus the water,throughly rub the entire ham or bacon down with this dry rub.Let sit at 38-40 deg,or as close as you can keep them to that temp,for 5 to 7 days.Wash them off to remove excess cure but DONT SOAK.I then hang them at room temp. until the dry good,a couple of hours,then I smoke them at 120 deg. for 8 hours with draft wide open.Then I smoke for 8 more hours at 125 deg. for another 8 hours with draft 1/2 open.If you want it fully cooked raise temps to 170 deg. and cook until internal temp. reaches 158 deg and there you go.
Hey Larry,thats a good question,from what Ive read and applied the #2 cure is used for country cure ham and bacon as well as dry cured sausages.When you process meats using #2 cure the finished product needs no refrigeration.This is what is called country cured or Virginia cured like you see in the store wrapped in muslim cloth.You can throw the thing up on the work bench and leave it there for a year and it only gets better with time.Dry cured sausages is something Ive never tried,such as pepperoni or salami.The dry cure method for sausages require lots of time and you have to be able to precisely controll humidity levels.I have however dry cured ham which is the country ham that is so salty.It is sinfully good in my opinion but hard on my high blood pressure problem.I only have a piece of it once a month or so.When you do a ham with the sugar cure method,which uses #1 cure,you must refrigerate your product until you use it.We actually freez the hams and bacons for use all year,[if they last that long.]Im going to be working up three hogs within a couple of weeks and Ill let everyone know how they turned out.Hope this helps,David
Cheech,My shelves are racks from an old fridge.The supports are unistrut,which is like a piece of channel turned up on thier sides with the opening facing toward the inside of the fridge.The racks are just the right width to slide into the channel,which makes them easy to remove for cleaning or rearranging.You could use lots of stuff for supports for your rack.I started out with 2x4's mounted on each side and just layed the racks on top.You could use angle iron the same way.I installed an oven element in the bottom for heat control.If you have any more questions just ask.David