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Bacon Cure

Prep Time:168 Hours
Cook Time:3 Hours

Nutritional Information

This recipe can be adapted suit any taste.


  • 5 lbs. Pork Belly skin off
  • 2 ounces Kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons pink curing salt #1
  • 4 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
  • 4 bay leaves, crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar or honey or maple syrup (optional)
  • 5 cloves of garlic, smashed with the flat side of a chef’s knife (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons juniper berries, lightly crushed (optional)
  • 5 to 10 sprigs fresh thyme (optional)


  • 1. Put your belly in the zip-top bag or on a sheet tray or in a plastic container. Rub the salt and spice mixture all over the belly. Close the bag or cover it with plastic wrap, and stick it in the refrigerator for seven days (get your hands in there and give the spices another good rubbing around midway through).
  • 2. After seven days, take it out of the fridge, rinse off all the seasonings under cold water and pat it dry.
  • 3. Let belly sit uncovered in refrigerator for 2 to 4 hours so pellicle forms.
  • 4. Setup the Egg for smoking with choice of wood and stabilize heat at 200ºF. Smoke until internal temperature reaches 150ºF.
  • 5. Let it cool and refrigerate it until you’re ready to cook it.
  • 6. Notes: If you don’t have five pounds of belly, either guesstimate salt based on the above or, if you have a scale, multiply the weight of the belly in ounces or grams by .025 and that’s how many ounces or grams of salt you should use.
  • 7. Pink curing salt means “sodium nitrite,” not Himalayan pink salt. It’s what’s responsible for the bright color and piquant bacony flavor. You don’t have to use it, but your bacon will turn brown/gray when cooked (you’re cooking it well done, after all), and will taste like pleasantly seasoned spare ribs, porky rather than bacony.

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Chef JJ’s is a unique, personal and hands-on culinary experience with a focus on kamado style cooking, corporate team building, private events and grilling classes. Indy's large party restaurant. Indianapolis, Indiana 317.602.3828