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Vacuum pack and curing

chancer

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Joined Jun 1, 2017
hi guys, loongg time lurker.
I’ve just purchased 40 kilo of pork belly (got a great deal from the local slaughter house)
and as I’m quite new to this I need some advice on whether it would would be ok to rub on a dry cure and then vacuum pack them.
I work away from home midweek so shuffling them around daily isn’t an option.
Also I’m looking for a real easy cure to use (idiot proof) as its a lot of meat to chuck out.
I’ll be cold smoking them.
Thanks.
 

daveomak

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Chancer, morning... I cold smoke all my bacon... It's an "old world" thing...
About vac packing while it's in the cure...
Bacon was, and still is, cured in barrels without the vacuum stuff.... IMO, without vacuum packing, the meat "fibers" are not compressed and "might" lead to a more old world style cure.... I have NO idea what effect vac-packing has on the curing process... Commercial bacon is injected and thrown into tubs and rolled into a cold room to finish the cure prior to smoking... It's a "brine/injection" curing process....
About the rub and cure...
That is the method I use... Weigh out appropriate amounts of ingredients for each belly... Uniformly distribute over the meat and gently rub it in... Then I stack the bellies with separation... the separators are from the arts and crafts section in W-M..

Bacon and Spacers.jpg

Very little moisture is released... The 34-38 deg. fridge tends to dry out the meat, intensifying the flavor like dry aged meats...
I rotate the slabs once during the curing cycle... Curing time can be up to 3 weeks or so... Lightly rinse/dry and back in the refer for more aging... I cold smoke below 70F ... Very thin smoke... as long as you like... Smoke applied for 6-12 hours/day... the no smoke period is a good thing... allows the smoke to penetrate for full flavor... Then back in the refer for one more additional aging/blooming step.. for at least 1 week....
You end up with a fairly firm belly, like old world bacon... full of flavor... doesn't shrink much... It's best baked on a wire rack at 350 ish until desired doneness is achieved....

.. the white is lard to reduce drying...
BACON 7-2017 004.JPG ... BAKED BACON.jpg

When I want bacon candy, I coat the cooked rashers with maple syrup and bake until hard..

My bacon recipe is..
1% sugar, 1.75% kosher salt and 0.2% cure#1.... (~125 ish Ppm nitrite)
 

browneyesvictim

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If you are not around during the week like you said to toss/turn a dry cure bag around, a "wet cure" might be more advantageous for you. Pops brine is about as "idiot proof" as it can get. You will need something like a 5-gallon food safe bucket or a bin of some sort to keep refrigerated for a couple weeks. But you mix up a gallon batch or as much as you would like that you have room for- drop in your belly slabs and then wait....(no need to turn, mix or flip). After that you can smoke it hot or cold if you want.

https://www.smokingmeatforums.com/threads/pops6927s-wet-curing-brine.110799/
 

chancer

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Joined Jun 1, 2017
Thanks guys, interesting stuff for me to ponder over.
I’m thinking half of wet now and half dry.
Thanks for the help and I’ll come back on and fill you in how I get on.
Cheers.
 

tiby

Newbie
2
12
Joined Nov 6, 2012
hi guys, loongg time lurker.
I’ve just purchased 40 kilo of pork belly (got a great deal from the local slaughter house)
and as I’m quite new to this I need some advice on whether it would would be ok to rub on a dry cure and then vacuum pack them.
I work away from home midweek so shuffling them around daily isn’t an option.
Also I’m looking for a real easy cure to use (idiot proof) as its a lot of meat to chuck out.
I’ll be cold smoking them.
Thanks.
Hi Ive been cureing and smoking Bacon for about 7 yrs.
Almost from the start I've spread the cure on the belly and vacuum packed it both for sanitary or cleanup, and technique.
The first time I used a large 2 Gal ziplock bag. but it did leak during the daily repositioning of the meat.
I realized the cured meat if vacum packed always created a wet sanitary surface, and helped evenly distribute cure over the entire belly. Also easier to keep every step of the process cleaner less mess!
I then ordered a machine with the longest seal bar 15inch to get a bag large enough for a whole belly.
(About 13x 20-23 ) I buy rolls of 15 inch vacuum plastic product and make my own bags.

The rest is History

U J B

Uncle Jeffs Bacon
 

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