First batch of home cured bacon is underway. Cure should be done Friday night, following the Ruhlman recipe (savory). The belly is 5lbs and is 2" thick tapering down to 1.25" on one side. How do I know if the 7 days has been enough of a cure? The book says the belly should be firm but this being my first one I have no point of reference. Also after the cure how long should I leave the bacon in the fridge to dry/form a pellicle before smoking? Any advice from the bacon pros out there would be great. Thanks.