June 10, 2012

So, about that bacon

I shared the first step of the bacon curing process here. When seven days had passed, I pulled the bacon from the weck jar that it had been curing in, rinsed it off so that no rosemary or salt were left clinging to the fat, and placed it on a baking sheet in a preheated oven set to 200 degrees. 

I used a digital thermometer to keep track of the internal temperature and when it reached 150 I removed it from the oven.

It would have been easier to cut if I had followed the instructions to let it cool first, but I just couldn't wait.  I used my bread knife to cut thick, even slices.  They were a little too thick, actually, but I will remember that for next time.

Then I fried up my pretty bacon slices in a skillet, on a lower heat to account for the great thickness.

It took a while, but eventually they were done!

I put the leftovers in the fridge for storage.

And we ate our home-cured bacon!

The subtle garlic flavor was pleasant, although some slices were a little salty for our taste.  I wasn't very strict with measurement when I combined the salt for the rub, but I also used a higher proportion of rub to meat than was called for: the recipe made enough rub for a 5 lb slab and mine was only 1.7 lbs.  The recipe that I followed suggests blanching the bacon before cooking if the saltiness is too overwhelming, which I might try next time.

PS. I didn't use sodium nitrate in my recipe, and you don't have to either!

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