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Bacon of the Month Club

CornfedCornfed Posts: 1,324
edited 10:44PM in EggHead Forum
This one's got "Egger" written all over it. If a bunch of us join, maybe we can get a group rate...


  • Richard FlRichard Fl Posts: 8,244
    Perhaps if some of us get together we came be one of the flavors of the month--read-- Buckboard Bacon.
  • BrocBroc Posts: 1,398


    Perhaps if ten of us got together we could afford one month's delivery.

    Too rich for my palate!
  • Richard FlRichard Fl Posts: 8,244
    Make your oun, It is great!!

    Pork, Butt, Bacon, Cowboy Buckboard, ALA Thirdeye, Richard, #1

    This project is the results of the master, Thirdeye, Wayne Nelson, Casper Wyoming. With his great guidance and generosity of providing the Buckboard Bacon Curing package and his knowledge of the art and science of smoking various meats , the following was produced:

    8 Lbs. Pork, Butt, Boneless
    1 Pkg. Buckboard Bacon Cure.
    1 Pkg. Jack Daniels, Pellets
    10:50 AM Dome, 175°F, Internal 67°F. Handfull Jack Daniel Pellets
    11:50 AM Dome, 200°F, Internal 95°F. 1/4 Cup Jack Daniels Pellets
    12:25 PM Dome, 200°F. Internal 117°F
    12:53 PM 2 Hours Dome, 200°F, Internal 131°F, Rotate Grid 180*, Handfull Pellets
    1:40 PM Dome, 200°F, Internel 141°F
    2:20 PM Dome, 200°F, Internal 145°F
    2:40 PM Dome, 200°F, Internal 150°F, Pulled
    Total Cooking Time, 3 Hours, 50 Minutes

    1 Rather than waste a lot of time retyping the great advise of Thirdeye, I will just post some pictures and some general comments. I highly recommend this to anyone wanting to make their own bacon or country ham. Best of luck. Richard
    2 Butt Extended Grid:
    3 Butt BGE Smoke:
    4 Butt Ready For BGE--Jack Daniel Smoking Pellets:
    5 Butt Starting:
    6 Butt On BGE, Partial Cook:
    7 Butt Just Off Grill:
    8 Butt Done:
    9 Butt, Cut For Bacon:

    Recipe Type

    Recipe Source
    Source: BGE Forum, Richard, 10/11/06

    10/11/06: Richard-I turned the package every day or so for 9 days in the refrigerator around 38F. -I let the bacon rest in the refrigerator for 24 hours and then cut thinly and froze individual pieces on wax paper. When they were frozen, they were placed in ziploc bags. If I had a Food Saver vacuum system, I would have used it. Thank you Wayne for your generosity!!
  • Richard FlRichard Fl Posts: 8,244
    This is the correct one!

    Pork, Butt, Bacon, Cowboy Buckboard, Thirdeye

    This morning I was slicing up my most recent batch of home-cured cowboy bacon and figured I needed to share this. Okay, I'm bragging...this batch turned out really nice. For a long time I have been planning to put up a bacon page on my cookin' site, just haven't gotten around to it. So this is kind of a preview. LOLIf you are not familiar with buckboard bacon, it is made from a boneless pork butt, pork loin or pork tenderloin. The loins come out similar to Canadian bacon, the butt is a cross between ham and side bacon. You can use Morton's Sugar Cure but I use a cure made right here in Wyoming, the link to their bacon page is below. (At the bottom of the page click on "Instructions" for detailed information). You just bone out the butt, rub with cure, refrigerate for 8 to 10 days depending on thickness, rinse, soak for 2 hours in water, dry and smoke around 200° dome until it gets to about 150° internal (I do mine direct on a raised grate because I add a few chips every 30 minutes).

    1 Then you chill, slice and fry. It is so much healthier than belly bacon. The slices are 2-1/2" to 3" wide and you can make it as thick as you want. Best of all, the price is right. This 7 pounds of bacon cost me $1.25/pound.
    2 Sliced Great for Breakfast
    3 Fried Great with Grits
    4 Tenderloins Come out like this.
    5 Good eats! Grilled
    6 Bacon & Eggs:
    7 The instructions are very detailed. It's as good or better than most how-to's I've seen. There are 10 or 12 photographs showing the whole process. There are 3 or 4 just about boning. There is a scan of them on their website, look at the bottom of the pages for "Instructions" then go to bacon cure.
    8 I like the butts mainly because of the height and the length of the slices and there is just enough fat you don't have to add any when frying.
    9 The loins on the other hand, take less cure time and even though the butt bacon is way less fatty than belly bacon, the loins are really lean. And that's good too. I have two vacuum sealed 1/2 loins I'm thawing right now. I will smoke them next weekend.
    10 These cures are DRY cures not brine cures, so the maple syrup can't be used. I did smoke this last butt on maple wood, which I liked. The Hi Mountain cure is a "sugar cure" also called "sweet pickling" cure. The ingredients are salt, sugar, brown sugar, maple sugar and 0.7% sodium nitrite. It is similar in nature to Morton's Sugar Cure, which is the sweet version of Tenderquick. Morton's have both nitrate and nitrite. Morton's comes with a separate packet of spices that you have to mix with the curing agent. The Hi Mountain cure has the seasonings already mixed into the curing agent. Plus, the Hi Mountain 16oz box comes with three premeasured 5.3 oz bags. One bag will do 8.3 pounds of meat, so one is perfect for a butt.
    *****THE CURE TIME*****
    1 The cure time on the butt depends on thickness. If it is 3" to 3-1/2" thick the full 10 days is required. When they are in the 2-1/2" range I go 8 days. Tenderloins and smaller diameter loins I go 6 days. If you find that it is too salty, next time try a longer soak time before you try to reduce the number of days in the cure. Of course, don't lessen the amount of cure as you defeat the process. Listen, I know the instructions are very detailed but here are a couple of things I'm not sure I mentioned and
    *****Something I learned just this week*****
    1 Ideal temperature is 38°. Colder than that slows down the curing process. Warmer than 44° is not a safe curing environment. Hi Mountain recommends turning at the halfway point. Many people turn every two days, some turn every 24 hours. Liquid will leech out of the meat from the salts in the cure. I was talking with some of my buddies who have also have made the buckboard bacon for years and of all things, the subject of the purge liquid came up. (I think I mentioned to you that I usually pour it out.) Opinion was 50/50 on leaving it in or pouring out the excess. Well, I stopped by one of our custom processing shops and visited with the owner and he confirmed that it is better to LEAVE IT than drain it because it is actually a brine of sorts formed by the cure and the water it extracts. He went on to say that turning allows for even distribution of the liquid that is in contact with the meat. He did stress that pouring it out would not interrupt or seriously affect the curing process but it may not be as EVEN. (So from now on I'm leaving the liquid) He also told me he turns his pork belly bacon every two or three days due to the large amount of fat and that was the way he was taught. Anyway, I learned something and I wanted to pass this along to you so you will get the most out of your home curing.
    10/14/06: Thirdeye
    1 In my Egg: I use a direct setup with raised grate & grate extender. My cooking level is about 12" above the coals. I like a 180° pit temp for 2 hours, then ramp the temp up to 200° until the internal temperature of the meat is 140° to 150°. Every 30 minutes or so I drop a few chips through the grate and onto the coals.
    11/18/06: Thirdeye--
    1 The meat will release a lot of liquid as it cures. It is mostly water but it is important because it actually forms a brine as it combines with the dry cure, so leave it in. The liquid needs to remain in contact with the meat to allow for even curing. I have done plenty of them in containers, I just tried to pick a container that was close to the size of the meat.
    2 I now prefer to cure in plastic bags because I turn the meat (technically called overhauling) more often than the one time that is recommended by Hi Mountain, and this way I don't have to handle it.
    3 Usually the liquid does not begin to release for several days. Check your temperature of your fridge. 38° to 40° is the ideal range you are after.
    11/18/06: Thirdeye--Howdy Richard,
    1 Try soaking the meat in cold water for 2 or 3 hours changing the water once or twice. Then rinse, dry and let
    2 it rest in the fridge from 2 hours to overnight before smoking. The rest time allows a sort of an equilibrium thing to happen. (resting goes for other brined foods too)
    11/18/06 AZRP--Thirdeye
    1 Colder temps slow down the process and warmer temps speed up the process. That being said, there are several ranges in my 4 or 5 reference books on curing. The coldest mentioned is 35°. 38° seems to be the temperature called "ideal". On the high end, 40° is noted most everywhere with the exception of Hi Mountain's instructions which call out 45° as the high end.
    2 I realize with a salt/pink salt/sugar cure the "spoilers" are dealt with by the cure, but I have a hard time buying into having my fridge set at 45° because of all the other stuff in there. I do mine in my beer fridge which is 34° to 36° and the cure times I use verses the saltiness I get in the finished product is just right for me. I guess I've never done one on the high end to compare the taste. I would think it would be stronger.
    3 On the positive side of the temperature question, I have NEVER had any product cured with the Hi Mountain cure turn on me, color wise, odor wise or texture wise.

    Recipe Type

    Recipe Source
    Source: BGE Forum, Thirdeye, 09/22/06

    09/26/06: Thirdeye

    The Hi Mountain instructions are written for electric smokers (they sell one) and that is why they mention heating the smoker to 150° and cooking for 45 minutes, then adding wood and increasing to 200°. They also let their meat sit out for 1 hour at room temperature. I have never figured out the 45 minutes at 150° without smoke. It seems that you are shortening the window for the smoke to penetrate the meat. Likewise with letting it sit at room temperature because colder meat will take smoke over a longer period of time. I have cooked on Big Chief electric smokers for about 35 years and all I can think of is that in the wrong hands, it is easy to over-smoke things in an electric smoker since you are burning all wood and because most people want to see smoke coming out of the vents all the time. I guess what I'm saying is their instructions are designed to prevent most people from over-smoking their bacon. I haven't ever made bacon in my electrics and I don't think I know of anyone else that does buckboard bacon in an electric smoker either. Maybe I'm missing something. LOL

    So anyway ..., for butts I bone them out and keep them whole during curing and smoking. In my BGE, I cook them direct on a very raised grate about 10" above the coals. and put them on when the dome is 180°. About every 45 minutes I turn the butts to balance the color and drop a small handful of wood chips through the grate on into the coals. After about 2 hours, I bump the temp to 200°-220° dome and cook until they get to 150° internal. This takes another couple of hours so my total time to reach 150° is 4 to 5 hours.

    For loins, I cut them so each piece is about 3 pounds or so. The smaller pieces are easier to get a balanced color on. They also cure faster and smoke faster. I use the same temperature ranges. I usually use apple wood with some cherry (mainly for the red color it gives), but on my last batch I used all maple and I really liked it. If you try guava let me know how it turns out. I sure like it on chicken and ribs.

    Don't know if you saw my reply to fishlessman on the BGE forum but I relayed this information to him. I have not tried this yet, but I have some loins curing right now and might do it on one of them. Rick Segers, another buckboard fan sent this info my way: "I do the buckboard bacon with a maple flavor and i will also do it with apple. With the maple after it comes out of the cure and rinse I make a fifty/fifty mixture of water and maple syrup and inject the butt. I'll then rub the outside with about a tablespoon of syrup and then put it in the smoker with maple wood in the cooker. I've done the same thing with apple juice instead of syrup and apple wood in the smoker".

    10/05/06 Thirdeye

    The amount of cure is based on weight, but the cure time is based on thickness. It's hard for me to find one in that 3 to 3.5 inch range, which calls for 10 days. I'll bet that the 9 days will work fine. Aftr rinsing, don't cut yourself short on the 2 hour soak time.
  • do ya get the whole pig for 150 dollars...? are they on crack ?
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