Curing Bacon: No Fluid Evident

Discussion in 'Smoking Bacon' started by njkayaker, Sep 17, 2013.

  1. I'm hoping someone can give me some insight into this.  I am currently curing about 9 lbs of bacon.  I have it divided into three slabs.  I used a cure made of kosher salt, pink salt and sugar.  I have used this recipe before (from makingitprimal's website). The first time I finished in the oven (very good).  The second I smoked it (excellent!).  still curing the third round.   My question is this:  none of these cures has resulted in much, if any, fluid build up.  The recipe says to turn the bacon and make sure that the fluid is well distributed.  well, the first two times there was a little fluid.  This time, there is virtually no fluid.  Is this an issue?  Is there anything I can do next time to ensure more fluid?  Do I need to?

    Thanks for any assistance, hints and tips!


    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 17, 2013
  2. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer Fire Starter

    Sometimes the bellies come to distributer packed in salt to help preserve them so you may have gotten a corned belly.

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  3. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer Fire Starter

    Sorry it wont let me edit above post...

    So if it was previously corned it will not exchange much liquid. You may have to soak belly prior to curing.

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  4. snorkelinggirl

    snorkelinggirl Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I've done a lot of dry curing (i.e. dry brining) of pork belly and jowl using salt, pink salt, sugar, and spices. Generally I will see fluid get pulled out of the meat during the first 24 - 48 hours of curing, when the salt on the surface of the meat pulls fluid out of the meat. However, as the salt gets absorbed into the meat, the fluid will follow the salt and so it gets pulled back into the meat as well. I usually cure my meats in a 2 gallon ziploc bag, and I do flip and turn the bags every day or so, but there is really very little or no liquid in the bags by the 3rd or 4th day. There is definitely variation in the amount of fluid depending on the fat content, whether or not your meat was previously frozen, and probably many other factors that I don't know about.

    Don't worry about it, all is well! Have fun!

    P.S. - I haven't had any personal experience with the corned bellies that cgaengineer mentions above. Whomever you buy your bellies from should be able to tell you how the bellies were packed.

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