9th Ward Daily Photo via rl reeves jr

9th Ward Daily Photo via rl reeves jr

I was privileged to receive two fresh pork bellies from a local farmer last week. When I say fresh I mean it. The belly pictured is off a hog that was dispatched about 20 minutes before I took the picture.

Now it’s time to convert the belly into bacon. Here’s how

1 pork belly, 12lb Berkshire or other good breed

1/2 c. Salt, Kosher

4 t. Salt, pink, curing

Method

* Combine all ingredients thoroughly

* Sprinkle ingredients all over belly

* Put belly in fridge in large pan

* Every 24 hours flip belly over

* Do this for 11 days

* Rinse seasonings off belly with cold water

* Let dry for 24 hours, flipping every few hours

* Build fire in smoker, smoke belly with favorite wood for 2 hours

* Remember, you’re not cooking the belly, merely flavoring it with smoke

* Return belly to fridge

* Let sit overnight

* At this point it’s time to slice your belly, this is a crucial stage in your project. We used our electric slicer at work so the bacon looks professional. If you don’t have an electric slicer use your sharpest knife, take your time and make your cuts as even as possible

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