Author Topic: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?  (Read 2805 times)

Offline Ginslee

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2019, 03:18:59 am »
Thanks for the explanation :)

All that's left to do is wait a few more days and then it's time for that first smoke   :D
« Last Edit: August 15, 2019, 03:28:14 am by Ginslee »

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2019, 01:14:53 pm »
Let us know how it turns out.


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Offline Ginslee

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #17 on: August 17, 2019, 08:51:03 am »
Hey Habanero,

Wonder if you had any advise on the following. So the belly has been curing for 8 out of the 10 days and it's pretty firm all over except one of the corner tips feels fairly soft.

Should I just let it go to day 10 and not worry about it or add more salt to the soft area? The fridge has been running at 36.68F by the way.

thanks!
« Last Edit: August 17, 2019, 08:53:48 am by Ginslee »

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #18 on: August 17, 2019, 01:59:41 pm »
You are running you refrigerator more than 1 degree lower than my refrigerator , and lower temperatures will slow down the curing. Since you used an equilibrium cure, it wouldn't hurt to cure them a few more days. I'm surprised the corners are soft. The corners generally firm up quick, because they are receiving salt from four sides. If it is just a small portions of the corners I wouldn't worry about it, it may just be extra layers of fat in those areas. I won't add additional salt.


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Offline Ginslee

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #19 on: August 19, 2019, 01:33:41 am »
It only seems to be one of the corners. I'll keep an eye on it as the rest feels nice and firm. I'm pulling it out on Day 12.

I'll post the results here 8)

Offline Ginslee

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #20 on: August 22, 2019, 04:17:40 am »
Hey Habanero,

So I removed the belly from the fridge today and rinsed it with water. Then I cut off a piece and fried it. The salt/Sugar levels seemed fine although the smell is more of a piggy smell than the bacon smell I get when I fry store bought. Other than that it seems to taste ok, nothing special though. Does smoking bring out that real bacon smell?

If I were to do a taste test between store/this bit of Cured and unsmoked bacon the store bought would probably win. I hope smoking it will make it a bit more special!




Offline cathouse willy

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #21 on: August 22, 2019, 08:21:56 am »
Imo. It's not bacon until it's smoked.

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #22 on: August 22, 2019, 02:19:28 pm »
Smoke improves almost anything. :) It's the nitrites that give cured meats that distinct "bacon" like flavor. I don't have time to calculate the amount of nitrite parts per million (ppm) your bacon has. The more nitrites you have in your cure the more "bacon" like flavor you will get in the end product. I don't us an equilibrium cure, I use a basic cure mix that will gives me nitrite levels of about 120 ppm.


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Offline Ginslee

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #23 on: August 23, 2019, 12:19:21 am »
Turning on the smoker in a few hours. I did a 200ppm cure, based on a recipe over at smokingmeatforums. 0.32% for a dry cure. I believe that's the max.

Offline manxman

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #24 on: August 23, 2019, 01:38:45 am »
It took me a several attempts to find the right cure for me and also how to apply the cure. Ginslee puts the maximum permitted nitrites in the US at 200 ppm (200 mg/kg) whereas on this side of the pond for dry cured bacon it appears to be 175 ppm (175 mg/kg) as far as I can see. I use a basic sweet cure mix with demerara sugar that is around 120 ppm (120 mg/kg).

However whether the pork is cured skin on or skin off, ratio of cure on meat side to fat side etc also affects the residual nitrite levels in the end product and therefore the taste. For example I cure skin off and the ratio of cure application meat side : fat side is around 75:25. Yesterday I smoked some bacon from a different breed of pig and the fat layer was thinner than usual so I modified the meat side to fat side cure application ratio slightly.

Good luck with the smoke.  :)
Manxman

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #25 on: August 23, 2019, 02:24:49 am »
I will have to look this up again, but I believe in the U.S.; for commercial use the maximum amount of nitrite is 120 ppm for bacon. For other solid muscle cured meats it is 200 ppm, and for sausage it is 156 ppm. I believe those numbers are somewhere on the smoking meat forum.

Maximan is spot on about the application of the curing agent.


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Offline manxman

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #26 on: August 23, 2019, 03:51:59 am »
I played around making my own cures for a while but then found a commercially made dry cure which produces the best bacon ever (IMHO!) and makes working out concentrations of sodium and potassium nitrites redundant. It also has sodium ascorbate in the mix which US research has shown reduces the amount of nitrosamines in the end product given they are known to be carcinogenic. Whilst I don't get too tied up on such things I do try and employ a common sense approach given my two young sons eat fair bit of home made bacon in one way or another. I also make sure I don't overcook any meat including bacon. (I like my favourite rib eye steak almost blue or put another way "wipe it's backside and eat"!  ;) )

There is a very good USDA Bacon and Food Safety bulletin available, going back to what Habs and Ginslee wrote I looked it up to remind myself and to quote:

The USDA is responsible for monitoring the proper use of nitrite by meat processors. While sodium nitrite cannot exceed 200 ppm going into dry-cured bacon, sodium nitrite cannot exceed 120 ppm for both pumped and immersion-cured bacon.
Manxman

Offline manxman

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #27 on: August 23, 2019, 04:28:34 am »
For anyone who has been following this thread there are quite a few calculators that help you make your own cures, I found this one of the best and is relevant to both US and EU standards, skin off or skin on etc and allows you to vary the amount of sugar / salt?

http://www.localfoodheroes.co.uk/calculator/dry_cure_bacon/
Manxman

Offline Ginslee

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #28 on: August 23, 2019, 05:18:14 am »
Yeah, that's what I read when I made the cure mix. Also from the smokingmeatforum:

Cure #1 's use is 0.25% by weight of the meat... so, 1000 grams meat X 0.0025 = 2.5 grams cure #1 X 0.0625 = 0.156 grams / 1000 grams or 156 Ppm...

Cure #1's use is 0.192% by weight for bacon... (120 Ppm brined)

Cure #1's use is 0.32% by weight for bacon .... (200 Ppm dry rubbed)

Manxman, what commercially made dry cure do you buy? That sounds like a way better idea than ordering everything separate. Maybe you can share out a link on where to buy the stuff? Not sure if it's allowed here but PM should be ok.

On a side note, the smoker has been running for a few hours now. I've was running in to temp problems at the start so I tried the ice trick at the bottom of the smoker but that wasn't working either. I was still getting temps of 32c(89f). What seems to work is I moved some of the ice to the first rack and moved it to the right of the smoke opening. The draft still seems to be fine and I'm able to keep the temp at 27c(80.6f).


« Last Edit: August 23, 2019, 05:29:55 am by Ginslee »

Offline manxman

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Re: Cold smoked bacon - Smoke times?
« Reply #29 on: August 23, 2019, 05:56:59 am »
Quote
Manxman, what commercially made dry cure do you buy?

I suspect you live in the US Ginslee and possibly somewhere hot judging by the temperatures you are encountering trying to cold smoke your bacon!?  :)  I live across the pond which will make getting hold of the same cure problematic. Below is a link to both the supplier (Weschenfelder) and the manufacturer (Laycocks) in the UK but maybe there are similar products available on your side of the pond?

https://www.weschenfelder.co.uk/bacon-curing-salt-beef/curing-salts/laycock-s-dry-bacon-cure.html

For anyone living in the UK I can certainly recommend Weschefelders.
Manxman