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Cold smoke bacon questions

I did my first cold smoke bacon yesterday. Used the A-Maze-N 5x8 pellet smoker in the LBGE. Apple wood pellets for 10 hours, temp. never got above 75. They had good color, but I noticed a couple of things. I sliced and cook a piece right after I took them off the egg, good flavor, but a strong smoke taste. Do you let it sit covered in the fridge for a time to mellow out the smoke? Also, I handled the slabs bare handed and I've got stain on my hands that look like I've been smoking tobacco for 50 years and it's hard to get off. I quess I'll use food handling gloves next time. Is 10 hours to long?
Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
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Comments

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    It will mellow out, but you can rinse off the outside before you slice it up to take some of the bitterness out and soften the smoke flavor.  The smoke penetrates into the meat - you won't be rinsing that off.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    If you sliced and cooked an end piece - it will not be representative of the majority of slices - it will be 10 times smokier.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,116
    I did cook an end piece. Thanks for the answer.
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    Yeah, I did the same thing.  I cold smoked mine for about 6 hours, then hot smoked it to around 155.  Ate me some raw bacon (not really raw) ends...delightful.  Now I'm off for an angioplasty. ;)
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • Mighty_QuinnMighty_Quinn Posts: 1,878
    I've yet to cold smoke bacon, but when I do my plan is to go 8-9 hours...that's based on various times seen on other forums I've read.
  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,116
    What was the purpose for hot smoking after you cold smoked? Why didn't you just fry some of the cold smoked slices?
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    I just thought I'd get more smoke in it with some cold smoking first, then the hot smoking was so it would slice easier and have a better shelf life.  I figure we don't eat it raw anyway - always cook it to some degree.

    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • MikeP624MikeP624 Posts: 292
    Got the Charcuterie book by Ruhlman for Christmas and just ordered my A-Maze-N smoker, and I am going to start my first batch of bacon this weekend.  I was going to start with the basic bacon recipe from the Charcuterie book by Ruhlman.  Any suggestion, tips or modifications?  I am picking up the pink salt and pork belly Saturday morning.
  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,116
    I did the Maple-cured recipe on page 83.
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    I mixed up the exact amount for the pounds of meat, rubbed it on evenly, then put it in a food saver bag.  It wasn't too salty...I didn't have to do a fresh water soak.


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    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • MikeP624MikeP624 Posts: 292
    Does vacuum packing it for the 7 day cure verses using a ziploc bag make a difference.  I am using ziploc bags.  Don't you want a little extra room in the bag for the water that is released from the meat?
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213

    MikeP624 said:
    Does vacuum packing it for the 7 day cure verses using a ziploc bag make a difference.  I am using ziploc bags.  Don't you want a little extra room in the bag for the water that is released from the meat?
    The water is already in the bag.  Vacuum packing just removes the air, it's not actually under a vacuum unless you have a hard plastic container.  The moisture came out fine - I actually learned (afterwards) some people add a couple table spoons of water to help even out the salt.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • FockerFocker Posts: 1,474
    edited January 2013

    Put two on this morning, Ruhlman and Polcyn sweet with cracked pepper.  Full load of peach on the Pro Q.  Plan is to go around 10 hours, slice and sample.  May go longer? 

    From what I have seen, those pellets churn out some smoke.  10 hours with sawdust is much different than 10 hours with pellets.  

    It will mellow some resting in the fridge.

     

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    Brandon
    Quad Cities
    "The most important ingredient in cooking is restraint."--Chris Bianco

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    I think those A-Maze-N smokers are cool.   I've been burning a lot of lump cold smoking. 

    I just ordered this - should be enough stuff to make a big maze.

    http://www.amazon.com/Perforated-Length-Staggered-Openings-Spacing/dp/B000H9RUJI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1357331540&sr=8-1&keywords=perforated+steel
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • BigWaderBigWader Posts: 490

    Not to hijack - but also have a question about cold smoking..  Right now in Toronto it is about 20 degrees fahrenheit (-5 C).  I have some Canadian Bacon curing that I'm going to cold smoke (first cold smoke with my Xmas present A-maze-n smoker!!)

    If that smoker only raises temp about 10'F above ambient I'm just at the freezing point in the egg.  Great for food safety - but I'm thinking too low for cold smoke?  Do I need to start a mini fire too and let my Guru keep the temp at say 40'?

    Thanks.

     

    Large BGE

     

  • i went 14 hrs cold on my last batch and it was perfect. I did not get the staing or bitterness like billy ray. I used Traeger Apple pellets FWIW

  • MikeP624MikeP624 Posts: 292
    Focker said:

    From what I have seen, those pellets churn out some smoke.  10 hours with sawdust is much different than 10 hours with pellets.  

     

    So pellets produce more smoke then the sawdust? 
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    BigWader said:

    Not to hijack - but also have a question about cold smoking..  Right now in Toronto it is about 20 degrees fahrenheit (-5 C).  I have some Canadian Bacon curing that I'm going to cold smoke (first cold smoke with my Xmas present A-maze-n smoker!!)

    If that smoker only raises temp about 10'F above ambient I'm just at the freezing point in the egg.  Great for food safety - but I'm thinking too low for cold smoke?  Do I need to start a mini fire too and let my Guru keep the temp at say 40'?

    Thanks.

    I'd give it a shot just with the a-maze-n thing.  If it doesn't get above freezing, you can put a 40 watt light in there (or 60 or 80, whatever it takes) and presto - EZ bake oven.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • FockerFocker Posts: 1,474
    edited January 2013

    @MikeP624,

    Yes, not from personal experience but by viewing videos of each in use.  Saw some billowing pics on here as well.

    One of the reasons I chose sawdust.  Smoke taste is individual, and I do not like much.  A longer lighter smoke will produce a better flavor than a shorter thicker smoke.   

    Brandon
    Quad Cities
    "The most important ingredient in cooking is restraint."--Chris Bianco

  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,116
    i went 14 hrs cold on my last batch and it was perfect. I did not get the staing or bitterness like billy ray. I used Traeger Apple pellets FWIW

    What were your vent openings? I used Traeger apple as well. Bottom vent was about 1/2" and the top was off.
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • billyray said:
    i went 14 hrs cold on my last batch and it was perfect. I did not get the staing or bitterness like billy ray. I used Traeger Apple pellets FWIW

    What were your vent openings? I used Traeger apple as well. Bottom vent was about 1/2" and the top was off.
    wide open, top off

  • MikeP624MikeP624 Posts: 292
    edited January 2013
    Just got my belly. It came with skin still on. Do I remove the skin?
  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,116
    I removed mine for the cold smoke. The ones I hot smoked before I left the skin on and removed it after the smoking was done.
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    I removed mine like billyray - after the hot smoke.  It was pretty easy to remove.  I've removed it raw on a pancetta - seemed harder.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • FockerFocker Posts: 1,474
    edited January 2013

    You can leave it on, cure, smoke, remove skin.  The cure and smoke will penetrate better if removed beforehand.  I may try this next time.  I removed the skin prior to cold smoke. 

    Just sampled a slice with sawdust for 10 hours....man is it good.

      :@)
    Brandon
    Quad Cities
    "The most important ingredient in cooking is restraint."--Chris Bianco

  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,116
    I'm doing Centex pig candy right now, should be done in about a 1/2 hour. Will post pics. I sampled one and boy was it good!
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • billyray said:
    I'm doing Centex pig candy right now, should be done in about a 1/2 hour. Will post pics. I sampled one and boy was it good!
    yeah buddy. That stuff is awesome. like crack



  • MikeP624MikeP624 Posts: 292
    what are the benefits too hot smokin versus cold smoking the pork belly
  • MikeP624 said:
    what are the benefits too hot smokin versus cold smoking the pork belly
    texture. Cold smoked give you the texture you would see in most commercial bacon. Soft, pliable, uncooked. Hot smoking cooks it and makes the texture much more firm and already fully cooked before you fry it up. Cold smoke is the way to go for traditional bacon

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,213
    I cold smoked because I wanted lots of smoke.  Then I hot smoked because I like it a little firm - seems easier to slice, and has a better shelf life - it's basically resetting the clock by killing anything pathogenic on and in the meat.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

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