Scrap it and start over?

Discussion in 'Bacon' started by jeffro510, Jan 3, 2015.

  1. Hey fellas, I know this will make me look like the bacon dumbass I admittedly am, but I'd much rather look like a dumbass and be safe, than the alternative. I bought a 13.3 lb belly cut into 4. Didn't weigh the quarters after cutting them. Then rubbed the cure recipe below on the four pieces of belly and refrigerated, flipping daily. I did this after watching some YouTube videos and found the recipe on a website. Needless to say, I also did this prior to reading all the great info on this forum. I'll definitely go by one of the two or three bacon gurus formulas next time. I just hate to scrap this if I don't have to, with the current price of pork bellies.

    13.3 pounds pork belly, skin on
    1 cup kosher salt
    8 teaspoons pink curing salt (6.25%)
    1cup packed dark brown sugar
    1 cup honey (preferably chestnut honey)
    8 tablespoons red pepper flakes
    8 tablespoons smoked sweet paprika
    4 teaspoon cumin seeds

    I left out the honey and cumin. My main concern after reading everything on the forum is the amount of cure and not weighing everything out precisely. Will this be safe to eat.
    I appreciate the advice!

  2. Don't throw this away just yet, I can't do all the math in my beer clouded head but you might not have missed too much on this one.
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2015
  3. That's funny, because my beer clouded head is how I ended up with this!
  4. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I don't Dry cure with pink salt---I use Tender Quick.

    Until a Pink salt guru chimes in, I will say, I believe you are supposed to use 1 tsp of Cure #1 per every 5 pounds of meat.

    You use 8 tsp, which would be enough for 40 pounds of meat. (3 times more than needed)

    Doesn't look good to me, but like I said you should listen to some guys who Dry cure with Pink Salt, of which I am not one.

  5. Thanks, Bear!
  6. Bear is correct. Cure 1 is 1/4 tsp per LB of meat or 1 tsp per 5 LBs The package says don't use to much. You are way over and you don't know how much over per piece of meat because you didn't mix for each piece. I don't know the max PPM so I can't say for sure if it is dangerous or safe. 

    In the future just because someone wrote it down it is up to you to make sure it is safe.

    Hopefully a cure 1 Guru will be along soon.

    How long has it been in cure????

    Happy smoken.

  7. Since late Tuesday night.
  8. I'm thinking unless I hear something different, I guess I'll go ahead and throw it out and call it a $45.00 lesson learned. That'll teach me to do it right next time...Sad day.
  9. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I hate to see that happen to anybody. That's a lot of money!!!

    I personally think you're better off.

    I've been waiting to hear different from a Dry curing Pink salt user, but I believe they are few & far between.

    I would venture to guess that about 90% of this forum is either Dry curing with Tender Quick, similar to what I do, or Brine curing with Cure #1 similar to what Pops does.

    Here's how I do it:

    Bacon (Extra Smoky)

    Last edited: Jan 4, 2015
  10. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    WIKI, "human LDLo is 71 mg/kg, meaning a 65 kg person would likely have to consume at least 4.6 g to result in death."

    1 tsp. cure #1 = 0.2 oz. = 5.68 grams .... X 8 tsp. = 45.4 grams cure #1 X 0.0625 = 2.8 grams if nitrite ...

    So, you would have to eat 22 #'s of bacon with that amount of cure in it to die..... BUT.... there are side effects of eating less than the LD amount... It ties up with the hemoglobin in the blood so your body can't get oxygen... Your internal organs could suffer dramatically...
    That is a lot of nitrite to be ingesting.... I'd pitch it....
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2015
    jeffro510 likes this.
  11. Thanks fellas. I appreciate it. I'll toss it. I just wish there was a local place to get smaller portions to practice with. Better believe I won't make this mistake again. Dammit!
    Thanks again,
  12. crankybuzzard

    crankybuzzard Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Jeff, if you have an Asian market close to you, and given your location, I'm sure there are a few, go see them. They usually have 3-5 pound chunks frozen that you can buy and experiment with.

    I make a lot of bacon, and like BearCarver said, I use MTQ, or I brine in Pop's solution.

    Also, welcome aboard!
    jeffro510 likes this.
  13. Thanks, Buzzard! I wish we did, but not here in Victoria. I'm stuck with two HEB stores, two Wal Marts and two Mexican meat markets. There are 3 local stores who will sell you pork bellies, but two of those make you buy a case of 3 full bellies and the other will sell you one full size @ 10-13 lbs. I haven't checked with those two La Michoacanas yet. Guess I'll check with them today.
  14. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    you can cut them up and freeze them.... Cure and smoke 2-3 #'s at a time.....

    I just cured 30+ #'s.... sliced it and vac packed yesterday... all day job....
    jeffro510 likes this.
  15. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Dave beat me to it, while I was gone:

    You can get a whole Belly and cut it in 3 or 4 pieces & freeze all but one to cure & smoke.

    Or you can follow my step by step & not worry about anything being wrong with it.

  16. I was just looking at pop's brine. That looks like the most fool proof and simple way to cure.
  17. I get my bellies from a butcher shop. I have to call and order but he will get me whatever I want. I always take him a sample of whatever I am messing with. He gives me better cuts than what is in the display case. Untill I got my slicer he would slice my bacon for me for free. It helps when he knows that you know how to do something good with it.

    Happy smoken.


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