Monday, January 7, 2013

Make'n Bacon II

I didn't make bacon until this year due to the fact I was under the impression bacon needed to be cold smoked. Seeing as I owned an electric water smoker, bacon was out of my reach. Then I read Hank Shaw's blog on smoking Ventreche and tried it for myself. it cooked faster than cured bacon, was cheaper than store bought and I could make it without adding any chemicals.

I started out with a full side of belly, I think mine was the left side. It cost me about $40 at my butcher. I cut it into two more manageable pieces and dry cured it in the bag the butcher sold it to me with about a cup and a half kosher salt and a half cup of brown sugar for 4 days.
I ordered to bacon hangers from for about half of what you can buy them for anywhere else. The problem was the racks in the smoker were too low to hang anything from. I solved that by drilling a 1/4 inch hole through both sides of the smoker and threading a 1/4' aluminum rod through it.
I used apple chips soaked in peach juice for the smoke. While the smoker was warming up I dried the belly and let it come to room temperature for smoking. I pierced the bellies with the hangers in a spot with a lot of muscle so they would hold up.
I just let it go at 210-220 degrees until it was a nice gold/red color.
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I let it rest until it was room temperature, cutting it before it cools down is a mess.
Once it was cooled I put it in the fridge to let the fat set a bit before peeling off the skin with the help of a knife to keep it pretty. I cut the center pieces of better presentation and bagged them. Next I bagged the end cuts and lastly the chunks and scrapings. The scraps are great fried and added to any dish crumbled bacon is good in. The skin can be washed, cut into stripps and fried into mouth watering chicharones with a smokey bite.

The advantage of hot smoking the bacon is you cooking time is greatly reduced and the fact you do not need to buy another smoker to have home made bacon. My kids and wife absolutely love it.  The reason I used a whole side instead of a 1/3 is they ate the last 1/3 before I got to try any. Don't be afraid to try it for yourself.

Thanks for reading,



  1. god, i got to get on something like that

    1. I was just made aware you can cold smoke using a soldering iron and a tin can in a BBQ grill, I might have to try that out.

  2. Daniel
    This post has taught me some things I didn't know about smoking meat. Thanks for sharing

  3. Looks good. I see you're a Foodsaver kind of guy too.

    1. I've started referring to it as my Fish saver because I don't have to throwaway freezer burnt fish anymore.

  4. Good God, that bacon makes my mouth water, bro! lol

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