We “borrowed” this recipe from a 2009 version of the City Palate. They’ve got lots of recipes on their website which are worth checking out. Even though, they refuse to ‘like’ our (potentially) award-winning Facebook page they’re still (mostly) good people and know a thing or two about food.
• 4 Tablespoon maple syrup
• 2 lb. pork belly, any ragged edges trimmed, rind on
• 4 oz. kosher salt by weight (about 1 c.)
• 2 oz. demerara sugar by weight (about 1/2 c.)
• 1 garlic clove, minced
• 1 teaspoon minced thyme
• cracked black pepper to taste
Heather’s Smoked Bacon City Palate – Nov/Dec 2009
Chef Heather Goulde-Hawke at District, a new watering hole on 11th Ave. S.W., makes her bacon without nitrites. After curing, cut the bacon into useful-sized pieces and wrap well for freezing. Gould-Hawke likes the additional flavour that accrues when she leaves the rind on the pork belly (bacon comes from the pork belly). This recipe needs a smoker and a fruit wood, like cherry or apple.
Assemble your ingredients.
The pork belly!
Rub the syrup onto the pork.
Mix together the remaining ingredients – the cure – on a tray.
Dip the meat into the cure to coat all surfaces and shake off any residue that does not cling.
Put the meat into a waterproof plastic bag in the fridge for 5 to 7 days, turning daily.
On the final day, rinse well under cold water and pat dry. Let stand, uncovered, to air-dry in the fridge for up to 48 hours to develop the sticky texture that allows smoke to penetrate. Don’t skip this step.
Smoke the pork belly for 6 to 8 hours over very low heat. Cool and wrap. Fry to use. Makes 2 lbs.
We smoked it on the Broil King Keg for approximately 2 hours-ish at about 200 degrees. We used a thermometer and smoked until internal temperature reached 150 degrees. We used apple wood chunks. The whole yard smelled like maple syrup, apple smoke and bacon. We were surprised that the neighbours didn’t come over the fence like a pack of orcs.
Ta-da – bacon! Now you’ve got to slice it and fry it up when you want to use it.