hickory smoked maple bacon
Thou shall never buy bacon from the store again.
How many times have you heard someone prefix the word bacon with ‘mmmmm’? Yes, bacon isn’t the healthiest food and yes it can be pricey but damn it tastes good. Whether it be eggs, burgers, salads, kebabs, pizzas, sandwiches, veggies or even wrapping around other cuts of meat, bacon has a reputation of making things taste even better.
We were blown away with how much better this homemade bacon tasted compared to the store bought variety. The stronger, fresher flavour and the fact you can cut it as thick or thin as you like puts it miles ahead.
It was only a matter of time before I made my own bacon and quite frankly I’m disappointed that it took me this long to do it. The curing process is simple with the hardest part being to wait the five days before it’s ready to smoke. It’s good for two weeks in the fridge but I’d be surprised if it lasts that long!
- 1kg pork belly, rind removed
- 3 tsp salt (preferably kosher)
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 1/2 tbsp coconut sugar
- 1/2 tsp curing salt (prague powder #1)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- Remove the skin from the pork belly with a sharp knife or ask your butcher to do it for you.
- Pour all the ingredients (except for the pork) into a large ziplock bag and give it a good mix.
- Add the pork to the bag and close removing as much air as possible.
- Carefully massage the liquid around the pork and leave in the fridge for 5 days. Flip the bag over every day mixing the liquid around and massaging into the meat.
- After the 5 days fire up your smoker to 250f.
- Meanwhile remove the pork from the ziplock bag and rinse thoroughly under cold water.
- Add a small chunk of hickory to the charcoal, add the pork belly and cook until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 150f.
- Put the bacon in the fridge on a plate and allow to cool.
- Slice as you need then tightly wrap in a double layer of cling wrap and keep in the fridge for 2 weeks. Alternatively you can slice it up into batches and freeze.
If you’re after any burger ideas to add your bacon to then click here.