Bacon....curing and smoking.

I wanted to try making my own salt beef but couldn't get saltpetre anywhere.
In the end I asked my pharmacist, she said yes I can get you some but the minimum quantity is 10 Kilos.
I found that a bit odd as its the one of the main ingredients for black powder.
I binned the idea after I found a man in Golders Green who does his own on the premises.
 
I wanted to try making my own salt beef but couldn't get saltpetre anywhere.
In the end I asked my pharmacist, she said yes I can get you some but the minimum quantity is 10 Kilos.
I found that a bit odd as its the one of the main ingredients for black powder.
Saltpetre is just potassium nitrate. Amazon and ebay both sell it in varying size packs for curing meat. Good thing that no one ever uses it to make things go bang as you pointed out ;)
 
I wanted to try making my own salt beef but couldn't get saltpetre anywhere.
In the end I asked my pharmacist, she said yes I can get you some but the minimum quantity is 10 Kilos.
I found that a bit odd as its the one of the main ingredients for black powder.
I binned the idea after I found a man in Golders Green who does his own on the premises.
Details man, details!
 
Cheers Ned..........are you hot smoking, or using a cold smoke attachment?
I do both, cold smoking for salmon and cheese. I made up a small box for the smoke generator to sit under and fitted a 6ft length of 4” aluminium foil flexi pipe between that and the smoker, cool smoke, perfect finished product.

The bacon I do is really Canadian bacon style, so I hot smoke it at around 105c-110c (225f?) for around 3-4 hours, I just let it get to a pleasant light mahogany colour and an internal temp of @65c-70c (150f-155f?)

Then I dab it down with kitchen paper and let it cool before wrapping it in a mutton cloth stocking, (or a cotton dish cloth with one end of the red/blue stitching torn open by hand rather than cutting it which causes a load of selvage getting all over your bacon.) If I want to store it longer I allow it to cool unwrapped in the fridge for 2-3 days to dry the outside, slice it (into rashers or leave as a joint) and then vacuum seal it in the correct food sealer bags or roll.
 
I might give this a shot actually!
Mods - can this be moved to the cookery forum please, where it’ll be easier to find later on.
I got some Prague powder off @mazon. I made a mix of salt, sugar and prague powder, dusted a loin and it is now sat in the fridge till next weekend. I shall see how it turns out.
 

I got the book and am waiting for an opportune moment (when I've time) to get the pigs cheeks out the freezer for face bacon. Seems pretty comprehensive.

Full disclosure, I'm not in a tryst with HFW or Steven Lamb.
 
I got some Prague powder off @mazon. I made a mix of salt, sugar and prague powder, dusted a loin and it is now sat in the fridge till next weekend. I shall see how it turns out.
Sounds good! 7-9 days is about right, longer if you like it saltier. Don’t forget to turn it every other day. :thumright:
 
Sounds good! 7-9 days is about right, longer if you like it saltier. Don’t forget to turn it every other day. :thumright:
When you say Canadian bacon are you referring to Canadian peameal back bacon or thin stripped style?
 
When you say Canadian bacon are you referring to Canadian peameal back bacon or thin stripped style?
I dunno either of those styles. I buy whole loins, cure them and smoke them under the guidelines I found on a smoking forum years ago. The bacon is for all intents and purposes already cooked and a quick flash in the pan to brown it and crisp up the rind a bit is all that’s needed for rashers of succulent porky goodness, I love it personally.
 
Well thats me done then..........

Stage 1:



Stage 2: 9 days later



Stage 3: Then it went in the oven, not the smoker as Mrs Effendi prefers unsmoked.......so I made it a tad saltier.

Stage 4: Back in the fridge covered for 24 hours.

Stage 5:


Stage 6: Test run. All good, ready for a bacon butty now.

 
I do both, cold smoking for salmon and cheese. I made up a small box for the smoke generator to sit under and fitted a 6ft length of 4” aluminium foil flexi pipe between that and the smoker, cool smoke, perfect finished product.

The bacon I do is really Canadian bacon style, so I hot smoke it at around 105c-110c (225f?) for around 3-4 hours, I just let it get to a pleasant light mahogany colour and an internal temp of @65c-70c (150f-155f?)

Then I dab it down with kitchen paper and let it cool before wrapping it in a mutton cloth stocking, (or a cotton dish cloth with one end of the red/blue stitching torn open by hand rather than cutting it which causes a load of selvage getting all over your bacon.) If I want to store it longer I allow it to cool unwrapped in the fridge for 2-3 days to dry the outside, slice it (into rashers or leave as a joint) and then vacuum seal it in the correct food sealer bags or roll.
That’s great and thank you, for the non ‘hairy armed’ amongst us who’s experience is based on cookery books. Of which I am an avid collector, or ‘your mums cooking’ any chance of a diagram of your smoking system, a plan, better still come around and build one. Menu options for payment are negotiable.
 
Well thats me done then..........

Stage 1:



Stage 2: 9 days later



Stage 3: Then it went in the oven, not the smoker as Mrs Effendi prefers unsmoked.......so I made it a tad saltier.

Stage 4: Back in the fridge covered for 24 hours.

Stage 5:


Stage 6: Test run. All good, ready for a bacon butty now.

You cooked it in the oven?

Mine gets sliced raw.
 
You cooked it in the oven?

Mine gets sliced raw.
All the recipes I looked at said to do the salt and prague powder for 7 to 10 days, rinse and pat dry, wrap in muslin/cheese cloth for a day then bring the internal temperature up to 150F in a smoker or oven. A couple of the recipes then said to let the meat relax for 24hrs after 'cooking' it, that made sense and hey presto!

If I had thought it was that easy I would have done it years ago rather than suffering the fat streaked with some meat that America calls bacon.

When you say sliced raw you mean after the salting and curing process?
 
All the recipes I looked at said to do the salt and prague powder for 7 to 10 days, rinse and pat dry, wrap in muslin/cheese cloth for a day then bring the internal temperature up to 150F in a smoker or oven. A couple of the recipes then said to let the meat relax for 24hrs after 'cooking' it, that made sense and hey presto!

If I had thought it was that easy I would have done it years ago rather than suffering the fat streaked with some meat that America calls bacon.

When you say sliced raw you mean after the salting and curing process?
Yep
There's no need whatsoever to heat it, especially if you're slicing, then freezing.
I'm wondering if those recipes are for baked ham, rather than bacon.
 
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