View Full Version : Bacon cure time?

Huh? What?
08-27-2015, 09:02 AM
I have a pork belly to cure and smoke. I'll be using pink salt to cure. What would you consider minimum time to cure for a 2" thick belly?

08-27-2015, 09:50 AM
Dry cure? 7 - 10 days should do it

08-27-2015, 09:53 AM
I went a week on mine, but I decided that I would go at least 10 days on my next one.

Huh? What?
08-27-2015, 10:52 AM
I did 10 days last time, but don't have quite that much time if I want to smoke it next weekend. The alternative is to smoke it the following week, which would have it curing at least two or three weeks out. Is there a maximum time for curing bacon?

08-27-2015, 11:56 AM
at 2" thick, I would go 7 days minimum. You can cure longer if you use an Equilibrium cure. Its pretty simple. Weigh the pork belly, after trimming... You want to weigh what piece is going in the bag, so if you're doing 2 bags, do each separately.

Then you determine how much Salt, sugar, pepper, etc you are going to add by adding a % of that weight...

So for example, 3% salt is pretty standard.. So if your belly weighed 1000 grams,

3% Salt = 30 grams
1% Sugar = 10 Grams
.5% Pepper = 5 Grams
.5% Garlic = 5 Grams
.25% Cure #1 = 2.5 grams

You can set your % preferences based on the flavor profile you want. I usually go heavy on the sugar (2-2.5%) and heavier on the pepper (1.5) ish but you reallycan't go wrong.. add whatever you like to it! As long as you add .25% Pink salt and 2-4% salt, you'll get bacon. @ 2%, you will not taste any salt, at 4% it will be pretty salty, you decide how you want it...

Anyway, by using this method, you can let this cure in your fridge for a month or longer... It will never go past where it should be, flavor wise..

Huh? What?
08-27-2015, 12:20 PM

Huh? What?
08-27-2015, 03:57 PM
Ok, using the proportions given by Shagdog, I ended up with two pieces of pork belly, each rubbed with...

50 grams of kosher salt
17 grams of brown sugar
8 grams of black pepper
8 grams of granulated garlic
8 grams of Tia Rita green chili salt blend
and 4 grams of Prague powder

Rubbed them and sealed them in zip-loc bags and into the refrigerator for at least 10 days, or maybe as long as three weeks.

Anyone see any problems with what I've done?

08-27-2015, 07:40 PM
Both pieces were equal weight? Were each in seperate bags or all in one bag? What was the belly weight? By my calcs, that rub would cure 1600g of belly. If that's how much got the above amt of cure, you're golden

08-27-2015, 09:00 PM
Ten days would be adequate cure time for a two inch thick belly, unless you leave the skin on. The cure does not penetrate the skin in the same manner as the exposed flesh, therefore bellies with the skin left on will take a few days longer to cure.

08-27-2015, 09:15 PM
I usually go 8-10. If you go on the longer end, do a good rinse after you are done curing before smoking.

Gary Tomato
08-28-2015, 03:14 AM
Minimum four, maximum twelve days for my bacon.

Huh? What?
08-28-2015, 07:50 AM
Both pieces were equal weight? Were each in seperate bags or all in one bag? What was the belly weight? By my calcs, that rub would cure 1600g of belly. If that's how much got the above amt of cure, you're golden

Both pieces were within a few grams of 1650 grams each. They each got that much rub in two different bags.

And they were already skin off.

08-28-2015, 07:57 AM
yep.. you're fine.

08-28-2015, 08:28 AM
Shagdog is pretty much echoing what I have said for years, that is... follow an established recipe or at least follow the recommended amounts of curing agent (which can be a pink salt + salt mix, or a given amount of TenderQuick) per pound of trimmed meat. In other words, the amount of curing agent is based on weight. Signature spices can be varied to fit your personal tastes. Some additional tips would be:

Curing time is based on thickness.

Overhaul your bellies (turn them), at least every two days. I cure mine in large zipper bags and overhaul them every day.

Don't drain off liquid in the bag. It will get re-absorbed during the cure cycle.

Following the cure cycle, consider a soak-out step - I usually do an overnight soak-out, but this is a personal choice. If you are doing two belly pieces... experiment.

Following my soak-out, I do an overnight equalization (rest) in the fridge overnight. This lets any liquids within the belly to settle down, and it gives me a nice pellicle.

Huh? What?
08-28-2015, 09:22 AM
Thanks for the tips. With my first ever batch, I turned it over every day.