Home Curing Bacon? Anyone?
I was just reading the thread on bacon-fat mayo (awesome idea, by the way) and it reminded me that I really want to try home-curing my own bacon. I have cured and smoked fish before, but always wanted to try bacon and ham, mainly because I am horrified by the horrible things in store-bought bacon and smallgoods in general. There is a butcher/deli near my house that does a lot of its own stuff, and their stuff is delish (red-gum smoked bacon or raw French style ham off the bone mmmmmm) but they still use the sulfur (I think it's sulfur) to keep it pink and cherub-cheek rosy. I don't care if my bacon and ham is grey - as long as it tastes good.
Has anyone cured meat without all the additives for aesthetics? I mean salt rub or brine and possible smoking and nothing else?
I also tried home-cured pastrami (brined beef that was smoked) and it was goodo, but again, used a commercial cure 'kit', so wasn't quite what I was after.
I'm the sort of dude who likes to brain-tan hides and make jerky by my camp-fire (although I do admit to using my dehydrator a fair bit for jerky, 'cause I eat a LOT of it, but I often over-dry it that way...) so kits and commercial rubs just aren't cool, I reckon.