Bacon!!!! Bacon, bacon, bacon, and more bacon. Here is the first of your homemade and cured bacon recipes. Once you experience REAL bacon- Oscar Meyer will never satisfy the itch. Slice it thick and bake it in a cast iron skillet at 350 degrees F for easy splatter free crispiness.

Ingredients

  • 20 to 25 pound batch with fresh pork bellies
  • ½ pound of Kosher salt
  • 1 pound light brown sugar
  • 2 ounces of insta cure #1 (pink salt)
  • 2-3 tablespoons of crush red pepper depending on heat preference
  • 1/2 pint of Bourbon

In a medium bowl, mix all the spices together well. Be sure to evenly distribute the pink salt- this will ensure proper curing.  Place the pork belly in a glass or nonreactive pan with the meat side up and pour half of the bourbon over it. Flip the meat and pour the other half of the bourbon on the fat/skin side.  Make sure both sides are drenched in the Bourbon. With gloved hands rub the spice blend on both sides; massage the slat and spice mixture into the meat well.

Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for one week; I have found large rectangular Rubbermaid containers work well for this step. Turn the meat every day. After one week, rinse off the salt and seasoning. If you like, you can rub some brown sugar and red pepper flakes on the cured pork belly for extra flavor. Place the bacon back into the refrigerator for 24 hours to develop a nice pellicle. Pellicle is what really holds onto the smoke flavoring.

Cold smoke your bacon for 8 hours. I used oak and pecan wood because that is what I had, but maple, hickory, or apple wood would be great.