As I had mentioned a couple weeks back, I’ve started making my own bacon. The first round turned out a little salty, due to curing for too long. This second round I went for a different recipe and had a different result.
This time, I tried a molasses / apple cider vinegar recipe provided by Alton Brown in his “Scrap Iron Chef” recipe. I cut the recipe in half since I only had half the bacon and I was a smidge short on the apple cider vinegar, but nothing that seemed like it would be an issue.
After three days of curing, I pulled the slab out out, patted it dry, and gave it a slight rinse. Since I didn’t have access to a smoker right away (might have to rig the grill up one time for this) I went ahead and froze the bacon for about 30 minutes to help make it slice easier, and then cooked away (using the oven technique).
The bacon didn’t turn out that good. It had what was best described as a “teryaki” taste to it. I’m not sure if being that shy on the vinegar didn’t cut the molasses taste enough, or I missed something during the curing process. Maybe the smoking is particularly important for this particular recipe, who knows. I was ready to toss the batch out, but Jen brought up a good point that we could freeze this batch, and use it for something like pork fried rice, where that flavor would be welcome. Great idea! Done and done.
I was a bit sad the recipe didn’t work out, but that’s the way it rolls sometimes. Slab #3 is defrosting in the fridge, and I’ll find another cure to try on Wednesday so the family can have bacon on Saturday before my trip. It appears that Costco is still carying pork belly slabs, so if I come to a nice recipe before the end of my tests, we can continue this into the forseeable future.