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Homemade Bacon - input requested

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    Homemade Bacon - input requested

    So, I've been dying to make homemade bacon. I'm planning to host a brunch for friends/family (10ish people) in a few weeks and would like to have this available. I plan to do about 3lbs of bacon, because I simply love bacon. As I talked about the plan with a friend in food, she sent me a link for "coffee cured bacon." Curiosity bit me and I had to check it out. I was saddened to see it called for 8 slices of packaged bacon sitting in a mix of 1/4c coffee grounds, 1/4c Chili powder, 2tbs brown sugar, 2tbs molasses, and a tbs of water. Somewhere in there, I assume you can still taste bacon.

    Anyway, this got me thinking. I'd like to try half the bacon (1.5lbs) with Meathead's Maple Bacon recipe, which I have complete faith in, and maybe do the other half with coffee in the cure. The question I have is, what goes in a coffee cure? How much coffee should I use?

    My initial thought was to replicate the Maple Bacon recipe and replace the pepper (1.5tsp/lb) with coffee grounds and leave everything else the same, but I'm curious what thoughts you have.

    AR Bacon Recipe for reference: http://amazingribs.com/recipes/porkn...m_scratch.html
    Last edited by bbantel; September 1, 2014, 11:30 AM. Reason: Added AR link

    #2
    Too funny, I have 4 lbs. smoking right now, will be done in 30 min. or so. I have followed the AR recipe exactly and am on my second batch right now. The first batch I did I used apple wood. My wife thought it was a bit sweet so I am using hickory this time. It was really tasty. When I made burgers from scratch grinding my own meat, the from scratch bacon was a real extra treat. I will be posting pics after my wife slices it tomorrow at her work.
    Not sure what coffee grounds bring to the recipe but as MH says, try his recipe exactly first and then riff on it if you want to.
    Good luck

    Comment


      #3
      We've been making 10-15 pounds of bacon almost non-stop since we tried the recipe. We don't deviate too much from the original recipe. The only change we've made so far is to add a mixture of hickory and apple wood. Everybody raves about the bacon, and we can't go to the store anymore...

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        #4
        Earlier this year I started making my own bacon (AR recipe). I follow it to the letter and love it. I've used hickory, cherry, peach, plum and most recently oak. I think the oak cuts the sweetness. A friend of mine has recently started doing the same but does salt only, maple was to sweet for his family too. He's also doing jalapeno bacon. I've never used coffee in the cure so I can't help you there. For me the key has been to finding quality pork belly. And as Meathead says keep a journal of your cooks.

        Comment


        • Papa Bob
          Papa Bob commented
          Editing a comment
          I really would like to here about the jalapeno bacon. I had I once in the little town of Clear Lake one morning and it was wonderful, would like little more spice but would like to here about you friends bacon.

        #5
        Well, after one horrible experience with the butcher down the street, I drove a little further to one that was very helpful. They had pork belly with skin on (cracklins anyone?) and pink curing salt #1 (much better than the first guy who lectured me about the "dangers" of curing). Apparently in Phoenix, pork belly isn't a popular seller, so the best I could do was flash frozen. Meh. Regardless, I bought a 3.6lb slab and enough curing salt for a 100lbs of meat.

        Going to thaw it out Friday and start the cure on Saturday, then smoke it the following Saturday using a hickory/apple mix. Might throw a pork butt on the smoker too, just because.

        Comment


        • FLBuckeye
          FLBuckeye commented
          Editing a comment
          A cursory search of custom meat guys in Chandler shows a decent selection. There has to be a bunch in a larger city in Phoenix

        • bbantel
          bbantel commented
          Editing a comment
          FLB - yeah there are a bunch, but finding a good one is...well, tough. I went to one, but they were closed due to flooding we just experienced, I'll check them out at a later date. Then I went to the one down the street from me, I don't want to smack talk, but they tend to be very $$. $18-$19/lb boneless choice ribeyes, side bacon was close to $10/lb, etc. This is also where I was lectured about curing salt when I asked for it. They don't sell it because "it's a liability" and how their curing salt is so strong it could kill people if used incorrectly. With a furrowed brow, I told him I was looking for Prague Powder #1, aka Pink Curing Salt #1, not his commercial grade curing salt. That lead to a deer in the headlight stare and a resumption of the "liability speech."

          The place I ended up going to was top notch, aside from the flash frozen side bacon. I'm sure I'll be exploring more places as time goes on.

        #6
        Man looking forward to watching this.

        Comment


          #7
          I did Meatheads bacon once, 1.5 pounder. I'll never make that mistake again.
          Next time I'll do a 5 pounder. The 1.5 belly didn't make it to day 2 after smoking.

          Maybe do more of what you already love and experiment with half a pound.

          Comment


          • bbantel
            bbantel commented
            Editing a comment
            Now that's so obviously simple, its brilliant, and it never occurred to me. Might have to do that, 3lb of MH's maple bacon, .5lb of experimentation.

          #8
          @Papa Bob, sorry for the delay in replying to your post. Still trying to find my way around here. My friend omits the maple in his cure and adds a couple sliced jalapenos, that's it. I haven't tried his version yet, but I'm a currently curing some belly using tabasco's chipotle sauce in the cure (maple left in sweet/heat). Smoking on Saturday, I will post the results here when I slice and fry.

          Comment

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