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-   -   Smoking Bacon??? (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=163237)

John Bowen 06-13-2013 10:30 AM

Smoking Bacon???
 
Tomorrow I was planning on pulling out the big smoker and do some ribs. That in itself is not a big deal but for almost a year now my neighbor always asks me to smoke some bacon. I ask him if he means like a breakfast fatty or wrapped around something and he says – “no” just pull the bacon out of the package and put it on the smoker until it is done and crispy.

I picked up some thick cut pepper bacon and plan to toss it on the smoker tomorrow after I get things started up but now that I think about it – I have never done this before and is it really that simple? I plan to put the bacon on a rack sitting elevated on a pan and smoke it “hot” side of a 230 degree pit until it looks crispy enough.

Does this seem like an okay plan? Am I over thinking this???

nucornhusker 06-13-2013 10:33 AM

I cook bacon in a smoker a lot, it's my favorite way to eat it. What kind of smoker are you using?

MS2SB 06-13-2013 10:36 AM

Your plan sounds good. It really is that simple.

John Bowen 06-13-2013 10:38 AM

I was going to cook on the Tucker Cooker tomorrow and do about 6 racks of ribs for comp tests and practice. I figure I can throw the bacon on at the same time - should not take more than an hour or so I guess. I will run by the farmer's market and see if anyone has some tomatos in and fix up a good BLT.

Juggy D Beerman 06-13-2013 11:07 AM

I have been cooking bacon on the Kettle and my big offset smoker for twenty years. (After this much time, you would think it would be done by now........)

I prefer the bacon that is cooked on the Kettle as it comes off more crispy than the bacon strips cooked on the big smoker. I usually run the heat about 300ºF to 325ºF. There are two rows of coals, one on each side, with the bacon laid out in individual strips down the middle of the Kettle. Make sure there is no part of the bacon over the coals as the grease from the bacon will start a fire. I prefer cherry wood for flavoring but pecan or peach works good too. After 20 minutes, I flip the bacon and check again every ten minutes. Cooking time takes any where from 30 to 40 minutes.

When I do this on the big smoker, I try to kick the heat up to at least 275ºF. The hotter the cooking temperature, the crispier the bacon. I do not use a water pan when I do this as the added moisture in the smoker will keep the bacon from crisping. If you are cooking at 230ºF, it will take at least an hour for the bacon to cook. It will get a nice color and taste, but it more than likely will not reach the crispiness that you are looking for. This can be corrected when you reheat the strips in the microwave. One other thing to watch for is where that grease drains. If it gets too close to the firebox, it may catch fire.

Lager,

Juggy

nucornhusker 06-13-2013 11:19 AM

I have smoked bacon up to 3 hours at 225*, but like Juggy said, the hotter the temp, the crispier and quicker the cook.

John Bowen 06-13-2013 11:22 AM

Thanks for the tip Juggy - that is why I was going to put it on the hot side of the offset. For ribs I try to keep the left side at 230 so the right side (or fire box side) so it will run closer to 250 or so.

I was planning on using cherry wood for the smoke flavor.

If I put it on a rack elevated in a pan do you think I still need to flip it?

nucornhusker 06-13-2013 11:29 AM

Flip if you want, I don't. I'd be a little cautious about putting the bacon on the firebox side. I'd worry about it burning, but that's on my pit.

Juggy D Beerman 06-13-2013 02:28 PM

If you are going to use a pan, I would not place the bacon inside it. You want the rendered grease to drip away from the bacon. By being inside the pan, the bacon won't get very much exposure to the smoke. Nothing wrong with using a pan directly below the bacon to collect the grease and by the way, that grease will be very flavorful for using in other recipes. It may not be very healthy, but it will be very flavorful.

On a big smoker, it is not always necessary to flip the bacon, but it is when I cook bacon on the Kettle.

Lager,

Juggy

John Bowen 06-13-2013 02:56 PM

Thanks for the input. I plan to use an old jerky rack / pan to put the bacon strips on. The rack will keep the bacon elevated out of the grease and the pan will collect the grease - I want to keep that mess out of the bottom of the smoker.. I cook bacon like that in the oven so I felt it would work for the smoker.

Juggy D Beerman 06-13-2013 03:14 PM

Yo John, Your plan should work. I am not sure as to how much distance there is between the rack and the collecting pan, but the more distance, the more smoke the bacon will be exposed to. At least that's the way it works on my big offset. Let us know how the bacon turns out.

lager,

Juggy

Yendor 06-13-2013 03:57 PM

What rub are you going to use? And now that you are done laughing, seriously. I like to use some Fast Eddy All purpose seasoning on my bacon (no matter how it is cooked)

John Bowen 06-14-2013 03:26 PM

I was just planning to use cracked black pepper - just to keep it simple. I was wanting to keep the flavor with the cherry smoke.


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