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Apple smoked maple syrup bacon

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    Apple smoked maple syrup bacon

    Alright folks, I'm back, with a license to post pictures

    I did some homemade bacon yesterday, and it turned out to be just about the best bacon I've had. Just wanted to post some LARGE pics in here for you to see.

    I didn't read up on any bacon recipes in this forum beforehand on purpose. I wanted to experiment, so now that I've done them I will compare with your recipes and learn.

    I went to my local butcher and bought some really nice bacon. He insisted on me getting them bone-in (i.e. with ribs), but I disagreed and got me some boneless bacon with the skin on, around 2lbs. I don't particularly like pork scratchings though, so I removed the skin. I decided to cook the bacon like I cook a pork butt, so I dry brined it for 3 hours (didn't have more time), and then put it on the grate for smoking with apple wood. I had the temperature in my Big Green Egg set pretty dead on 230° F for about 3.5 hours, and then I cranked it up to 300° F for the last hour. I wanted to get good caramelization.

    After the bacon hit 122° F I brushed them all over with some Canadian Maple Syrup (Maple Joe's), and left them until they hit 175° F, when I brushed them with a second layer of syrup. I removed them when the internal temp was 194° F (was so hungry I didn't want to wait anymore...), and let them rest for 30 minutes.

    Done deal, the bacon looked fabulous, so I served it with a generous amount of cole slaw and a nice cold beer. Epic win, I must say. I will do this over (and over), it was so good.

    As you see I didn't smoke the bacon so that I could (later) slice and cook in the kitchen like you do with regular store-bought bacon. My grand-dad used to eat his bacon like this, so I like to think of it as a hommage of sorts.

    The bacon, just removed the skin on this one:

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    My Big Green Egg, just added the apple wood:

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    Bacon in the making:

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    Getting close now...:

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    And here you go, how 'bout that color, anyone hungry?

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    Sliced, ready to serve:
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    So, what would I do differently? Two things:
    1. Put a drip pan underneath, with some baked beans. What was I thinking? Completely missed it. Shame on me.
    2. Add more smoke. A cut of meat like this with a lot of (not marbled, but layered) fat can take a lot more smoke. Hit it hard!

    Attached Files

    Dear Henrik's pictures: WELCOME BACK, MISSED YOU!

    Lol, nice post! I was just telling my wife today I want to try bacon. I love it on breakfast and lunch sandwiches. Otherwise not a huge bacon fan with most other things, including burgers. (I know, I have to duck when tomatoes are thrown when I say that).

    I like how you bold the picture captions. I may have to copy you on that.


      Awesome. Not sure if what you made is technically "bacon" though - Its more like smoked pork belly. I certainly wouldn't pass it up though. I just bought a pork belly from an Asian market and it came with the ribs on. I'm guessing I should cut them off prior to curing and smoking?


      • Henrik
        Henrik commented
        Editing a comment
        I think you're right, W.A, this section is cut off right behind (literally) the last rib. Anyhow, removing the ribs or not is purely a matter of personal preference. It will come out just as great, flavorwise, with ribs "in". I was just lazy :-)

      • Henrik
        Henrik commented
        Editing a comment
        Comment II: actually, after reading up I would argue that what I cooked IS bacon. Bacon is made from pork belly. Bacon (the kind you buy in the store) is smoked and cured. I cooked this one differently, but that's beside the point.

        Also, I misread your question: If you're curing and smoking (i.e. not eating it directly like I did), I would remove the ribs. Make it easier to cut later. Let us know how you cook it, and how it turns out!

      • W.A.
        W.A. commented
        Editing a comment
        You are probably right. Like a ham is a ham, but it is also a leg. You have inspired me to take a section of the belly and cook it using your method too.

      You're back!! With pictures to boot Awesome cook Henrik. I had seen a YouTube video once on pulled pork belly which looked good. Sliced like you did would be good too I'm sure.


      • Henrik
        Henrik commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks! Yes, this one is gonna be on my "heavy rotation" list.

        I sliced it superthin today and made some really mean sandwiches. Can't recommend it enough. Or as my old relative puts it (he's been a farmer all his life): "nuthin' beats a dead pig" ;-)

      Awesome post Henrik! Inspirational!


      • Henrik
        Henrik commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks, mt!


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