There’s been a lot of buzz buzzing around the Internet over the last few weeks about home-curing bacon as a possible option for Father’s Day. We’ve already provided some of our favourite suggestions for a Father’s Day filled with bacon, but if you were dying for something else, maybe you could consider what the Washington Post says is the best way to show Dad you care. Our rundown of a Father’s Day filled with home curing follows after the jump.
Home Curing: Child’s Play, says WP
When I first heard about the home curing phenomenon, I was pretty sure that I couldn’t do it in a million years. It’s not like I’m much good at curing anything at home (except for maybe the occasional hangover). But the WP says I’m all backwards on this. “What if we told you it’s so easy a child could do it?” they ask me. First of all, I’m pretty sure the last time I heard that statement was on an infomercial. And since all of the kids I know find it difficult to keep their rooms tidy, I’m not sure they’ll be very good at curing bacon. But what do I know?
Anyhoo, they tell me that the biggest problem is finding uncured pork bellies. And I think they might be right! It is pretty tough to find uncured pork bellies. They tell me to look for a butcher, but they seem to be overly optimistic about my ability to locate butchery retail. Why again can’t I just give my Dad some prepared bacon? I know he likes that.
Once you’ve found pork bellies, you are apparently all set. The basic idea is that you pack a pork belly with a mixture of salt, black pepper and sugar, and let it sit for seven days in the fridge. After that time, you should have something resembling the bacon you buy in the store. (So, er, on second thought, probably not the best Father’s Day present.) Ta-dah! In other words, maybe it is simple enough for your kids to do.
Bacon Hasn’t Quit Smoking Yet
Of course, home-curing is not all sweetness and light. This thread on Chowhound discusses how home-curing can be a little finicky. After all, the key ingredient for bacon is not just sat and sugar – that’s basically just ham. The key thing for bacon is smoke. And smoke is in low supply in the Washington Post’s recipe. Some of the folks on Chowhound suggest smoking the bacon in your oven, or using liquid smoke. Which, you know, I would assume it’s not a great idea to have smoke billowing out of your oven.
You’ll Find Me at the Grocery Store with All The Normal People
But at this point, I’m really starting to think that the whole home-curing biz is really not for me. Some labour saving things are pretty awesome, actually. I certainly don’t try to bake my own bread or churn my own butter. Why do I really need to cure my own bacon? I think I should leave that up to the experts, like the folks at Maple Leaf.