Salty Baocon of Death question

Discussion in 'Smoking Bacon' started by big_rich, Jun 21, 2008.

  1. big_rich

    big_rich Newbie

    Hello all.

    I did my first bacon last weekend. Only problem I had was the Extreme saltiness of the meat(leaving me to have to soak my slices before I cooked them). The flavor underneth the salt was amazing though. I just did a simple salt/sugar cure(no nitrates) to the meat put them in plastic bags and turned them once a day leaving them to pretty much soak in their own juices for 7 days. ( then cold smoked for 8 hours) Was this my mistake? Should I have drained off the "pig juice" each day and reapplied cure?

    Or is the extreme saltiness part of the process? I'm going to try other methods next time. Just wanted, really, to know if this is how all homemade bacon turns out? Over salty.

    Pork bellies in my area are 2.79 per pound. And really at that price I'm only making the bacon for the superior flavor. My wife was a bit put off at the expense-to-saltiness ratio. And soaking the meat prior to cooking made it shrink incredible and loose some of it hickory smoke flavor.

    Any help/thoughts would be appreciated.


  2. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Welcome to SMF Rich Be sure to go to the Roll Call Forum and introduce yourself- experience, location, equipment...etc.

    Did you rinse the bacon well before smoking? What was the amount of salt/Lb? I use nitrates... MUCH easier and more complete/trustworthy cure in my opinion.
  3. big_rich

    big_rich Newbie

    Not entirey sure on the amount. I made a about 1 cup of sea salt(non iodized) for all 7 lbs of belly mixed with 1 cup of brown sugar. I rubbed the salt into the meat and diddn't shake off any excess.

    I'm not opposed to using nitrates. Just didn't have any on me at the time. I bought 500g of sodium nitrate(to mix a proper cure) for round two. I take it though that the saltiness was my error. Perhaps I did rub too much salt.

    Another thing, the butcher removed the rind before he sold it too me.
  4. bb53chevpro

    bb53chevpro Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Big Rich, I too do not use nitrates when curing bacon. I use a mixture of salt and sugar. 100 grams salt, 50 grams of sugar to 1 kg of bacon. I too find this very salty, I let soak for 2 hours in cold water, changing water every 1/2 hour. Definatly better.
    The next time I make belly bacon, I will increase the amount of sugar to 75 grams and only cure for 5 days. Then into the Outhouse for cold smoking.

    Hope this helps.
  5. big_rich

    big_rich Newbie

    Do you let it brine in it's own juices? Or do you let them drain off? I was thinking of next time doing, like you said a 5 day salt. I just fried up some fresh out of the freazer. I noted that the intense salt flavor has dramatically dropped, requiring no soak. I think next time. prior to using nitrates, I'm going to do, like you said, shorten the salt time and then freeze/thaw before I eat. I just hate to have to soak because it seems to loose the "smoke" flavor too.

    It does fill me with enough confidence to try it again though knowing that someone else has a "salt pork" problem. LOL. And it's true, their is no bacon in the world that compares to homemade.

  6. deadeye126

    deadeye126 Fire Starter

    i am getting up the nerve to try bacon just need fridge space and last i checked bellies were 79 or 89 a pound
  7. bb53chevpro

    bb53chevpro Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    You can also try to soak it before you smoke it. sample it for saltyness, once its ok, then dry it with towel and smoke it.
  8. ghost308

    ghost308 Fire Starter

    I also cure my own bacon and smoke it ,and I think you have your salt / sugar mixtures backwards I use 1 tbl salt / 4 tbl sugar, per Lb , sugar in the raw works really well, cure it for 5 days, soak for 2 hours and rinse then dry in the fridge for 24 hours before smoking.
  9. kratzx4

    kratzx4 Smoking Fanatic

    I make my own canadian and buckboard bacon. I use either the Morton Tender quick recipe or High Mountain buckboard cure.

    The tender quick calls for 1 TBLS of tender quick and 1 teas sugar per pound of meat.
    High Mountain cure I use 1 TBLS + 1 1/4 teas per pound

    I cure the canadian Bacon for 3 days in baggies turning each day (boneless pork loin) rinse for 2 hours changing the water every 1/2 hour Slice off a small piece fry it up to check salt. rinse longer if needed.

    I cure my buckboard bacon (Pork Butt) for 10 days turning over on day 5 then rinse and sample as above.

    I also pat the meat dry after soaking and allow it to set uncovered in the fridge for an hour or so to dry further.

    Then in to hot smoke to internal temp of 160 for canadian and 140 for buckboard.

    I think you will find the soaking step to solve your problem
  10. big_rich

    big_rich Newbie

    That sounds like an excellent idea.
  11. bixter1

    bixter1 Fire Starter

    I always soak my bacon before it goes down. Mountain High is the BEST cure. I've been trying to make a homemade version and I cant seem to figure it out so I just stick with using the store bought cure.

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