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first Canadian Bacon

PostPosted: Mon Sep 29, 2014 8:00 am
by badjak
The subtitle of this post should be something like:
When things go wrong they keep going wrong.....

I ordered a 3 kg slab of pork loin and when I got home and put it on the scale it was only 2.1 kg. I should have realised at that time that more was going to come....

I put the slab in brine (with cure #1) and injected 10% of the brine in the loin. Let it sit for 4-5 days and took it out of the brine and hung for an hour or 2 to dry a bit.

So far: not too many issues.

Filled the cold smoke generator with saw dust and added a hot plate to the smoker as I wanted to smoke it at around 40-45 oC and the fr!"£$king sawdust didn't want to light, even though it was the same dust as I used a couple days before and I dried it out in the oven. I tried numerous times to light it and it smoked for about 5 minutes before going out again.

Eventually I put the csg directly on the hot plate and got plenty smoke, but only for an hour or so. Normally the same load of saw dust gives me 10 hours!

Finished the loin of by poaching as my oven doesn't want to stay below 100 oC (let alone 93 oC).
I let the temperature of the water come up really slow and it never got above 77 oC.
The little piece I tore of the loin before poaching had quite a good smoky taste, but after poaching I could only just detect a hint of smoke.

The end result wan't bad, but a little bit boring.

I have been re-thinking my smoking strategies as the csg worked proper when I had the proQ smoke dust and with the first batch I could buy here. After that, nothing worked, so I was thinking of just warm to hot smoking.

And then I suddenly found the smoking dust again, so hopefully my next attempt goes a heck of a lot better!

Re: first Canadian Bacon

PostPosted: Thu Oct 02, 2014 5:50 am
by badjak
I am about to embark on a second attempt at canadian bacon and would like some advice:

I brined/pickled the first one (and injected about 10% into the loin. The loin is not very thick, so couldn't I just use a similar way as with bacon (dry cure)?

How long and what temperature would you smoke it at? I use a csg (if it stays alight properly this time, will test this first) in combination with a hot plate

Is poaching in water a good plan to finish of the process or shoul I find a way to do this in the oven?

All extra info will be appreciated!

Re: first Canadian Bacon

PostPosted: Thu Oct 02, 2014 11:16 am
by NCPaul
A pork loin can be dry cured like bacon; I give it 10-14 days for the salt to equalize through the meat. After smoking with the CSG it is not necessary to cook the meat, I leave it raw and freeze it to cook just before eating. :D I would try to work with the oven since the poaching time should be at least an hour and I would be worried about loosing the flavor to the water. If you do poach it, maybe it can be done in a bag to reduce water contact.

Re: first Canadian Bacon

PostPosted: Thu Oct 02, 2014 11:42 pm
by wheels
In the UK, cured loin is often sold as Back Bacon. It can be brine cured, but I usually dry cure mine. It's never sold cooked; you cook it at home. It's used at breakfast when you'd have thin slices (called rashers) fried, or grilled, with fried eggs and other things that cause heart attacks!

When smoking it, I'd treat 25°C as a maximum in the UK. Maybe you'll have to extend that a bit. Can you get below 30°C? Above that would worry me.



We slice it raw and then cook it before eating.

Re: first Canadian Bacon

PostPosted: Fri Oct 03, 2014 6:13 am
by badjak
Thanks guys,
Yeah, I know back bacon and figured it was more or less similar to canadian bacon. Well, that is, the one is cooked and the other isn't :-)
I have actually seen it a lot where Americans finish with cooking and Europeans don't.
I will struggle to stay below 30 oC, maybe just about by smoking at night.

Would you give it more nights smoking?

And if I can't stay below 30 oC, would I be better off by finishing in the oven?

Re: first Canadian Bacon

PostPosted: Fri Jan 02, 2015 1:55 pm
by tazplas
Hey Badjack
Lets keep it simple for those in hot climates.(I'm in Perth, Western Australia)
Hot smoke it like i do if you cannot stay under 25-30 C. Then slice and enjoy.
I double or triple smoke it depending on the pellets i use (Oak or Marri)
Cook through until 65C on the inside (at 110C temp)
Had no complaints yet :)

Oh, and i dry cure it - up to 2-3 kg slabs. I allow 14 days, rinse, dry for 12-24 hours in the fridge and then smoke/cook/cool & then grill/fry. Yum :D


Re: first Canadian Bacon

PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 6:46 am
by badjak
Thanks Tazplas :-)
I will keep experimenting.
I can use my smoker for hot smoking, but it has no temperature control, so it will be a bit of trial and error.
At the moment it is very wet here, so everything is on hold for a little while, but I'll be back with a vengeance!