Funky Tasting Bacon

Discussion in 'Smoking Bacon' started by cybball, Jan 10, 2016.

  1. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

    I've made bacon about 3 times now.  I'm using a dry cure and letting the bellies cure for around 8-10 days.  This last batch I made (and even batch #2) had a kind of funky taste.  Not really rotten, but a nasty taste in the fat.  I cut the slices fairly thick and normally bake them when cooking.  I cooked up another package today and let them go a little longer to see if the fat would render, getting rid of that taste.  Nope.  My wife and I looked at each other and agreed that it has a nasty taste.  The following is what I went by:

    5-6 lb belly

    1/4 c brn sugar

    1/4 cup maple syrup

    1/4 c kosher salt

    2 tsp Cure #1

    1/4 c water

    7.5 tsp blk pepper

    I put all of this onto the belly and into a zip lock.  Pull out the air and into the fridge.  I flip/rub them every day.  8-10 days in fridge.  I then smoked to IT of 165.

    Any suggestions?  Anyone have this happen?  No one has gotten sick from it, but it just doesn't taste good because of the somewhat funky rancid taste.

    Thanks everyone!

  2. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

    Forgot to add, the bellies came from a friend's hog that they had butchered.  I bought half of it and kept the belly whole.  It was done at a locker, frozen and fresh when I started, so I know it wasn't "bad" meat.
  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    From what I can tell ...   that recipe did not come from folks on this site....   where did you find it...  and do you have some pictures of the bacon....  

    Was the refer at 38 ish degrees...   did you check it with an accurate therm.....
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2016
  4. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    If your slab was 5 pounds you had twice the amount of cure #1 required.

    If you are planning on doing dry rub cures, you really need to weigh everything accurately. I'd recommend that you get a good digital scale. If you don't want to do that then I'd recommend that you use Pop's brine method for curing.

    Here is the calculator I use for dry rub cursing bacon:

    Pops Brine method:

    Just out of curiosity what type of wood did you use and what temp were you running your pit at?
  5. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    I had a similar situation with a similar ingredients, no Maple Syrup. I did everything the same, per a few previous batches, but this one tasted off. Not quite rancid , just not good. I don't know what went wrong. In your case, if you have been using commercially raised Hog Bellies in the past and this run was the first with a friends hog, the flavor will most likely be stronger and unusual to your palate. Commercial pork is raised on a grain based high growth feed, makes for mild or bland tasting pork. Gentlemen Farmers can and often do supplement expensive grain feed with old or damaged veggies, fruit, bread, produce trim and anything else they can get cheap or free. The resultant flavor is notably stronger, more Porky, almost Gamey. While things go wrong for no apparent reason, either of the above may be the reason for the Off flavor...JJ
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2016
    cybball likes this.
  6. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I agree with sailor. Pops brine is the easiest way to cure meat. And like he said you used twice the amount of cure, which could be dangerous.
  7. lamar

    lamar Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    You state you smoked it to 165f. That should have rendered most of the fat out and then baking it in the oven would come close to burning it.

  8. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

    I'm thinking that the different meat sources may be the main culprit. I will agree on the cure amount though too. I found the recipe on the internet. :). Last time I di that. Actually use pops brine on a lot of other things (Canadian bacon and chicken) and its easy and turns out awesome. I'm going back to commercial belly and pops brine on the next batch to see if that does the trick. Thanks for the replies. Oh, Im curing in my kitchen fridge and its usually 36-38.
  9. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

    I said 165 to final IT.  I meant to put 145 IT.  The bacon didnn't render all the fat.  I'm really thinking it was the hogs that the bellies came from.  Going back to commercial bellies and will report back with the results.
  10. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Animals that eat grains, hays etc. do taste vastly different than animals free ranging...  and the meat is a different color...  

    We have become accustomed to flavorless bland meat from the box stores....    My neighbor free ranges his Angus for 6 months of the year and the meat has a powerful beef flavor and is dark in color...   TOTALLY different than store bought...   
  11. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

    Completely agree.  I have all of the other portions of the hog though and they are really good.  Chops, ground, etc.  It's only the bacon I notice this taste.  I'm going to try the "box store" belly next and use Pop's Brine.  Going to stick to the same process of brining time as I do with my canadian bacon and smoke the same.  Hopefully that does the trick.  As of now, I just can't eat the stuff I made.
  12. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

    Found a new source and have 20 lbs of belly in pop's brine in the fridge. Giving them 13-14 days. Once smoked, I will report the results!
  13. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

    New batch od 20lbs. Did this with Pop's brine. Have them hanging with a fan on them to dry for a bit. I added black pepper after curing. On the smoker soon!
  14. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

  15. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

    The meat was the key. This batch came out really good. Going to invest in an amazen smoker though. Hard getting good smoke with my Masterbuilt Propane at lower temps. This 20lbs should last a few days. ;)
  16. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

  17. cybball

    cybball Fire Starter

  18. bluebombersfan

    bluebombersfan Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Good looking bacon!  I sometimes add black pepper as well!  Adds a nice kick to it![​IMG]

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