I have seen a cousin posting about home-curing bacon and got interested. I like bacon. I like cooking. Seems a match made in the kitchen. He gave me the basics. I researched some more. Settled on generally following the recipe in Ruhlman’s Charcuterie. The results have been outstanding; we are hooked.
Once I had all the necessary curing ingredients (Salt, Curing Salt, Corn Sugar, Big zip-close bags), I went to a local butcher and got a pork belly. This belly had the skin on. Removing that was quite a lot of work for this first go. It will certainly take me a few times to figure out the best way and the best knife to use to do this. Or start getting the butcher to do it for me. Cracklins sound like a good thing to make, though.
Mixed the cure, coated half the belly, put in a bag, put the bag in the refrigerator, and waited. The other half went to the freezer. After about 10 days, with a bag-flip in the middle, the curing belly came out got washed, dried, and smoked. Bacon.
4lbs cured with just the curing mix
15Sep Smoked with hickory and apple
Very nice bacon flavor. Mary says this is the only bacon I can make (“Don’t start doing anything weird to it!”)