I should have known better, Bacon & Hocks

Discussion in 'Nose to Tail' started by foamheart, Jan 20, 2015.

  1. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Here awhile back I found a new source for bellies and other gastronomical delicacies. When I thawed out my bellies they were all freezer burnt. I was slightly miffed (being polite here). Beside they were the worst bellies I ever saw. A friend here talked me out of just chopping 'em up for cracklins (and I wasn't even that sure about that).

    Since my cured smoked hocks were depleted also, I thought a nice happy curing bucket might be nice.

    I made two gallons of Pop's brine, thought I would need help to get the bucket up on the old plastic shelf in the beer fridge, but I did and it didn't break the plastic. They just don't make good plastic like that any more. LOL

    Honestly I should not admitt it, I have not been ton the beer reefer in a long time, and I just forgot they were in there. Been out there submerged for 19 days now. I tasted the brine (I always do) and it was soooo mellow. I am guessing maybe so much pork, it had reached equalization?

    I took it out, rinsed the meat, and spread it out in the project reefer.

    Will continue the story tomorrow maybe. If I allow it to dehydrate for 2 days in the reefer it should require less of a dewater cycle.

    BTW as to the freezer burnt belly. It appears that the curing cycle makes that a mote point. Maybe it will rear its ugly head again after smoking? I hope not, got another belly in the freezer from the same source.

    Chuckles, the neighbors Mother came by to what I was smoking for supper, Tenderloin. Guess I can show yas.

    We got to talking about food prices. She's like me and likes all the less traveled trails. We talked about oxtails, hocks, bellies, gizzards, chicken feet, etc etc etc...... She finially laughed and said since delux tripe and ribeyes cost about the same her family was eatting better than ever before. They can't understand all the steak and ribs but no gumbo's or jambalayas.

    I thought it hilarious, true but funny.

    OK, be back tomorrow. I did not post any on the tenderloins, I have done them too many times for them to be interesting, but if you have a question or want step by step, I really don't mind helping.

  2. moikel

    moikel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    19 days is a long soak!
    They look fine to me.
    Lamb brains for dinner here tonight,used to cost nothing now $9 a tray. We must ship tons of them to Europe .
    Side of lamb cut & packed between $ 60 & $ 70 today, $ 12 when I got my first non family pay packet,that was 1977 to be fair.
  3. bear55

    bear55 Master of the Pit

    Foamy, I will check back for another report.  Hoping the curing process takes care of the freezer burn.

  4. Foam

    I know it will be good. 


    Happy smoken.

  5. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Its funny how things change isn't it Moikel. I don't mind a slow raise but since the turn of the century (14 years ago). I think I read we have seen a 500% increase in groceries with the most comming on few meats. The grocer's blamned it on the farmers and ranchers originally because of the gas and oil prices. Then they shifted to blaming transportation costs. Yes I can understand 5.00 for 2 lbs. of strawberries shipped from Mexico in Feburary. But the groceries around here no longer buy and sale local meats and produce. Everything comes from far away by rail car. Its 75 degrees here today, Why are we selling California and Mexican produce?

    I just don't understand it.
  6. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    When I pulled the bellies out the brine, I can't see any remenants of the freezer burn. I'll just cross my fingers and wait till its done.
    Thanks Mule, it should be me thanking Pop's. His Pop really revolutionized curing. And I really appreciate him sharing that knowledge.

    Don't know I would have lasted rubbing and turning. Maybe I'll try that on the next  belly.
  7. moikel

    moikel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The problem here is there are 2 big national players in food retail & they screw suppliers over. At the weekender I can buy local beef at the butcher in the nearest town.
    We get fruit here from USA, Chile,Asia then there is a huge amount of frozen seafood shipped in as well. I can't fathom people buying frozen dinners when you work out the relative cost let alone the preservative, fat,sugar content.
    $9 worth of lambs brains would have fed 3 people,throw in 2 eggs,breadcrumb & some veg it's still $ 4 a plate. What's a Big Mac cost ? A large pizza is $ 15 minimum . A kg of chicken hearts is $5 ,how many yakitori skewers is that? But people just won't move from high end cuts or farmed fish at $ 26 a kg when blue mackeral are $ 6 a kg. Just plain dumb.
    Any enough speeches I am going to try to catch lunch.
  8. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I threw 'em in the 275 preheated smoker, left the vent full open, the door cracked, and the tray pulled from the cold smoker. I call this the Dee-Water cycle.

    The other smoker is full too. It has a different prepared chicken in it. But will post it on another thread.

    The neighbor came over to inspect the loads. Those feet are as big as my fist!! Did I mention we are buddies!!

    Three hours in, and there just ain't much smoke. BTW three hours in is, 1 hour dee-water, and two with the cold smoker. So its now almost dry and just starting to take some color...... I said just starting.

    Doesn't look much different does it. That cold smoker is the berries. Even though I am warm smoking.

    More up dates to follow.
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2015
  9. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Foam that is one happy smoker, will wait to see the finish.
  10. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    LOL... I will say this, its better protected than Ft.Knox! I sure am glad he's my buddy.........

  11. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Ok, now 4 hours in and the meat is finially dry, should see some color many now........ <shrugs> I am actually thinking about double smoking these. But we are 100% for rain tomorrow and the next day.

    Well while that is going on, let me show ya my new Tupperware Roughneck(Tm) Storage container.

    Thats it on the bottom right, under the MES30. I knew you'd be impressed.

    Oh wait, ya wanta see whats in it? Thats a whole lotta love!! (pecan shells)

    Oh and guess what's in the project refer thawing?

    Be back with more later!
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2015
  12. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    [​IMG]    [​IMG]
  13. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Starting to look a little better

    Gonna give 'em another little bit and put 'em to bed and I am thinking I might do it again tomorrow. But I so hate smoking in the rain. But we'll see!

    Sure wish I had C-Man's slicer....... maybe christmas after next.....LOL You know I remember when smoking meat was cheap and easy and delicious.... what happened to the cheap part?
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2015
  14. I hear ya! I priced a whole pig, small one mind you, would yield about 140-150 pounds cut and wrapped. $350, not outrageous, but a half (side) of beef is $1200 bloody dollars!! Damn near makes a guy turn criminal!
  15. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Naaaa......... Not criminal, just a gentlemen farmer. Three cows, a new one a year and butcher one a year, a pen of pigs, a yard of chickens, a veggie garden, and about an acre of feed corn (1/3 won't make, 1/3 for the birds, and 1/3 for feed). You better make that two acres of feed corn...LOL
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2015
  16. welshrarebit

    welshrarebit Master of the Pit

    $1200 for a half side of beef??? At that rate I had $60,000 of beef in my yard a couple of weeks back... 25 came in but only 24 left!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2015
  17. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I am more impressed with Hawaii every time you post. Just free cows walk by and you pick which you want. Thats better than going to the auction barn, but I'd miss all the lies told at the barn, its half the fun.
  18. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Ok, about lunch here I stuck the hocks and bacon back in the smoker. I am so glad I did, just look at them now.

    They picked up some more color, and the smell, Thats what heaven must smell like.

    To be fair, last night when I tucked them in..........


    Just look at that hock and think about how it would be the star of the show in a big pot of beans!!

    Meat has not exceeded 115 degrees yet, That bacon is looking so pretty and not even greasy.

    More to follow. BTW I am still working with that chicken also.
  19. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Just pulled 'em and I am going to put one under my pillow tonight!

    Isn't that purdy?

    Just one more.......

    I'm happy........

    But it all in the reefer, except the bacon, which I brought in the house to skin.

    Yes I went ahead and tryed it even though its still warm and every harder to slice!

    Thats it, smoked hocks and bacon...... and I can't even tell that the bacon had freezer burn any more.
  20. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Looks great, bet the hocks will make great soup.

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