SIMPLE HOMEMADE BACON

PREP TIME: 15 minutes, plus 5 to 7 days to cure and 12 hours to chill
COOK TIME: 1½ to 2 hours
YIELD: 2 pounds of bacon

INGREDIENTS

2 pounds pork belly
⅔ cup Himalayan salt
2 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper
Any dried herbs and spices (optional)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Remove the skin from the pork belly with a very sharp knife. Try to keep the skin intact, in one piece, as you remove it.
  2. Rinse the pork belly and pat dry with paper towel.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together the salt, pepper, and any dried herbs and spices. Rub the mixture on both sides of the pork belly.
  4. Place the pork belly inside a sealed airtight container and store in the refrigerator for
    5 to 7 days. The flavor becomes stronger the longer you cure it. Flip the pork belly over every day. (Make sure you wash your hands thoroughly before touching the pork belly.)
  5. After 5 to 7 days, remove the pork belly from the refrigerator and rinse off the salt, pepper, and any other herbs and spices. Pat dry.
  6. Preheat the oven to 200°F (90°C).
  7. Place a roasting rack in a roasting pan. Place the pork belly fat side up on the rack.
  8. Bake until the meat reaches an internal temperature of 150°F. This usually takes about an hour and a half to two hours.
  9. Remove the pork belly from the oven and let it cool for 30 minutes.
  10. Wrap the meat in parchment paper and store in the refrigerator overnight or for 12 hours.
  11. Slice the meat to the desired thickness with a sharp knife. You can now cook your homemade bacon, or store it in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or the freezer for up to 2 months.

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