I smoked a cured 5 lb. pork belly yesterday. The brine was a dry rub of a salt, brown sugar, nutmeg and thyme mixture. I coated the belly in raw apple cider vinegar before applying the rub. I let it cure in the brine for 5 days flipping it in the liquid that formed daily. I smoked it until the internal temp was 150 degrees F. Took about 3 hours with the wind yesterday. I used a blend of pecan and apple woods. Mmmmm! Bacon!
I stopped by my local butcher and asked about getting a couple pork bellies for making some bacon. He laughed and said he really didn't know if he can get them right now and how bad the price will be. He called his supplier and told me they would be $4.99 a pound. Last fall I paid $4.49 so I didn't think it was terrible. His bellies are always real meatey and trimmed really nice and I never need to cut much off. Told him to get me two. I'm just trying to plan ahead for later this summer when the tomatoes are ready to go (BLT's are my favorite), with all the talks of meat shortages who knows what the price might be by then. SInce making my own now for about 5 years I won't buy that cheap crap that's mostly fat and water.
I also make the Canadian bacon from pork loins which we really like, much cheaper to make but sometimes I just prefer the regular stuff.
BT, that's some good looking stuff you got there.
Edit: picked them up today (2), butcher gave me them for $4.59 (24 lbs) , I'm going to hoarding this batch till August.
Bugle- The smoked loins look great.. Can do a lot of different things with those.. Still like my 'Canadian bacon" with eggs/cheese breakfast sandwiches but agree they are great on pizza.. The local Costco store still had the regular 8-9lb pork (top) loins on my last two visits but I still have a couple in my freezer or I would have purchased another one..
That looks awesome on a sandwich or a pizza topping. Yum!
Utah- Had to look up cottage bacon.. Most BBQ/Smoking sites refer to this process as buckboard bacon (bbb).. I have a friend who has made/smoked a couple of pork butts into bbb and I have had some.. Very good and something I want to try in the future.. He does use pink salt in the cure though.. Most of the guys I know use www.smokingmeatforums.com as their go-to place for smoking topics. Looks like they have several threads/posts on bbb but I did not research further to see if they have a no-nitrate cure process. I did check you-tube and saw a couple of video's on making regular bacon (from pork belly's) without any nitrates.. Maybe you could apply to a pork butt/shoulder.. Good luck
I've done cottage bacon from this site and it was very good but he does use nitrites.
Have you tried shoulder bacon/ cottage bacon. whats the result if you have. are you using nitrites or not. I dont really want to use nitrites. I would rather use regular stuff like sugar cure etc is there a recipe/ procedure I could look up online that you would recommend there are so many
Local Costco finally had some decent belly's so I picked up two (9-11lbs).. Used a dry brine/cure with one featuring brown sugar/maple syrup and the other a rosemary/garlic mix..One belly was thicker so I smoked them separately.. Used a cold smoke process for 3-5 hours and then finished smoking at 200 degrees until the bacon hit 150.. Just sliced and sampled the rosemary garlic and it was delicious.. Regular store bought stuff just can't compare..
Have not been able to find good pork bellies at Costco the last several weeks so I decided to make some Canadian bacon.. Have been wanting to try this for awhile. Started with a 9lb pork loin and brined/cured for 11 days.. Smoked yesterday with apple chips.. 2 hours at 120 then increased to 225 until the meat hit 150.. Let sit overnight and just sliced.. Turned out great with good smoke flavor and a touch of sweetness in the meat (brown sugar was in the brine)..
So I have another local butcher shop pork belly. Looking for a good recipie for some thanksgiving morning bacon. I prefer dry curing.