No nitrate bacon

Air dried cured meat and salami recipes

No nitrate bacon

Postby Jimuk79 » Sat Sep 07, 2019 4:48 pm

I’m looking for a recipe for a no nitrate streaky Bacon. Just salt and spices, maybe some smoke flavour. I’m a partial novice. So a wet cure if it’s easier to start but ultimately dry cure.
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Re: No nitrate bacon

Postby ComradeQ » Sat Sep 07, 2019 5:09 pm

Don't do it, don't fall for the lies around nitrites in bacon. Without nitrite your bacon will taste like a pork roast and the chances of dangerous nasties making you sick are too high for my liking. Besides, if you are trying to mimic some of those "nitrite free bacons" that are sold all around, they are a lie. Every single one I have seen uses celery cures ... these cures are still utilizing the natural nitrite present in the celery to do the exact same thing to the meat. However, they often have much higher levels of nitrites than one that uses cure #1 as it is hard to control the incoming nitrite when using celery cures. If you are concerned about nitrosomine formation in your cooked bacon do one of three things (better yet do them all); 1) Don't cook your bacon to burnt/crisp. Nitrosomines form even when they are not used to cure meat when you burn/char things. A burger containing zero added nitrites that is cooked to black will have nitrosomine formation. 2) Add ascorbic acid or sodium ascorbate to your cure mix before rubbing on the meat. These are simply a form of vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that helps to counteract the formation of nitrosomines. 3) Utilize an equilibrium cure and carefully measure using a small jewelry scale (something that can measure very small increments) all your cure ingredients. Extend your cure time to include a period of rest/equalization before and after smoking.

I hope you are willing to try utilizing proper cures for your own safety. There are many great bacon recipes on the forum for you to learn from. I recommended the wonderful resources Wheels has posted with some bacon calculators as a great starting point.
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Re: No nitrate bacon

Postby Jimuk79 » Sat Sep 07, 2019 5:26 pm

Thanks comradeQ
Part of the reason for no nitrate bacon was health reason but also I did have some back n that was cured that way once. I have read Parma ham is cured without nitrates but takes time. Yes I know there is a lot of hype at the moment about nitrates and I’m not an expert.
I’ve made bacon, pastrami, salt beef and a few others but not as often as I would like. Always from “kits” from sausagemaking.org with great results. Just wondered about trying something different.
I’ve raised my own pigs and we used everything but the squeal and the tail. That was great. Didn’t make black pudding either actually.
Sorry to ramble on. Just love the website, so many recipes but so little time. And no I won’t worry about the nitrates just cook my bacon less.
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Re: No nitrate bacon

Postby badjak » Sun Sep 08, 2019 6:07 am

I agree with the Comrade.
Don't be scared of nitrites!

If you would want to work totally without them (so also no celery etc) you would have to use a hugely high amount of salt, so much that the bacon becomes close to inedible because of salt content. In that case you reduce the free water so bacteria can't grow.
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