The Great Canadian Bacon Experiment

Well, I finally did it  I’ve jumped head first into making cured meat … a lovely, smokey, salty piece of pork known as back bacon or if you are from the USA, Canadian Bacon.

Back bacon is surprisingly easy to make.  Pork loin, brine, time and smoke.  Can’t get much easier.

We started with a piece of boneless pork loin, trimmed of visible fat and silver skin.  Trimmed weight is three pounds.  We brined the loin in a simple mixture of water, kosher salt, brown sugar and pickling spice.  After four days in the brine, we rinsed the loin in cold water and placed it in the fridge to dry the surface for smoking later in the day.

Brined loin, ready for the smoker

For the smoke, we prepared our smoker with hardwood briquettes and maple wood chunks and lit it up to prepare for the hot smoke.  Three hours later, after smoking at between 225 and 250 degrees Farenheit the back bacon was ready.  After a 5 minute rest, the bacon was in the fridge to cool.

The end result was great.  The end pieces were a bit saltier than expected, but the flavor and aroma were just where I would have expected – smokey, salty with a hint of sweetness.

Sliced and ready to fry

Sunday bacon and eggs were a real treat this weekend, knowing that the back bacon was something we made at home … quite satisfying.


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