Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Only one thing tastes like Bacon...

As mentioned in an earlier post, I am trying my hand at making bacon. Well, the preliminary results are in... and we have a WINNER! I modified Michael Ruhlman's recipe for Maple-Cured Bacon by subbing our own Steen's Cane Syrup for the Maple Syrup and then hot-smoked over hickory for 3 hours. All I can say is that bacon is ridiculously easy to make and economical to boot. The main challenge is being patient enough to wait until it is done.

Let's take a look at the process:

First you need a "Green Belly". These can be challenging to find, but a call to the Gourmet Butcher Block here in New Orleans  quickly solved the problem. Whole Foods can get them as well, but theirs are skinless.  For the bacon project, I wanted skin-on. I cut the belly in half and used one piece for the porchetta (see prior post) and then I used the other half for our bacon test.

At the right you can see my finished product. Not bad for a first try! I would describe this as a very porky/smoky bacon with a mild salty/sweet flavor. Overall, very well balanced.


Happy Grilling Guy said...

I wish your butcher would open a branch in Baton Rouge. It's crazy how hard it is to find pork belly up here.

Nice bacon!

David said...

Try Whole Foods. They usually have 1/2's that have already been skinned. You'll pay for it, but at least its a source. If you are willing to ride out to Gonzales, I bet ol man Lamendola could hook you up as well. Give him a call first to be sure:


Happy Grilling Guy said...

Thanks for the heads up on Lamendola. I've never heard of him before. Gonzales is an easy drive!