Dry cured bacon is certainly the most delicious kind of bacon. It's how bacon has been made for centuries and once you make your own, you'll ever buy bacon from the store again (well if you do, it won't be as good). Put some aside as your family and friends will devour the lot and you don't want to go without.
5 KG Pork Bellies
300g Coarse Sea Salt (Non-Iodised)
250g Soft Brown Sugar
10g White Pepper
4 Bay Leaves Finely Chopped
25g Freshly Toasted and Ground Coriander Seeds
5 Juniper Berries Crushed
40g Pink Salt (Optional)
Make The Dry Cure
Combine all of the dry cure ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly, especially if using pink salt. Once all ingredients are mixed well, set the bowl aside.
Note: Pink salt is not “Himalayan salt”. Pink salt (cure #1) contains nitrite and is often used for curing meats.
Prepare The Pork Bellies
Carefully remove any sinew from the surface of the bellies and then pat dry with paper towels
Rub the dry cure liberally and evenly into the belly ensuring the surfaces are entirely covered. Put any leftover cure in an airtight container and set aside.
Put the bellies in a nonreactive, air tight container turning and re-stacking (put the bottom on top) daily for four days. Pour off any excess liquid and rub in another generous covering of cure. Refrigerate for a further three days again turning and re-stacking daily.
Note: A non-reactive container is one that will not react to the brine. Aluminium, cast iron, and copper are all “reactive” and should not be used. Stainless steel, ceramic, glass, and metal cookware with enamel coating are all “nonreactive.”
Remove bellies from container soak in cold water for two hours. Pat dry and hang or refrigerate (uncovered) until touch dry.
Cold-smoke using your Smokai Smoke Generator
Place the bellies in your smoking chamber, either on racks or hang using butchers twine.
Light your Smokai Smoke Generator and cold smoke on a low pump speed for 8 hours using Maple Smoking Wood.
Your bacon is now ready to slice and cook. However, it will improve through ’ageing’ - wrap tightly in cling film and place in the fridge for 2-3 days.
If you find your bacon is too salty, soak it in fresh water for a further two hours.