1 1/3 pounds
Butchers will cut pork belly to any requested size. The pork belly skin must be removed before curing. The cure will only saturate the slab of pork belly from the outside in. An ice pick, skewer or thin boning knife can be used to poke several tiny holes toward the center of a pork belly slab, so the cure can saturate the middle of the slab and not just the outer edges. A large zip lock plastic bag is best for containing the curing mixture after it liquifies. It is best to put the plastic bag inside of another container, in case the bag leaks. For a first attempt at creating a custom flavored cure, go small. Use a section of skinned pork belly that weighs 1 to 2 pounds A 5" wide slab of skinned pork belly is good for this recipe.
mix and it is used to flavor many desserts. Chat masala contains cardamom, ginger, mango powder, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, coriander, peppercorns and a few other warm dessert spices that are perfect for a bacon flavor. Ground dried mango powder and chat masala can be found in Indian markets. Mix 2 parts sugar with 1 part Kosher salt. Mix about 1 1/2 cups for a 5" wide slab of pork belly. Any curing mixture that is leftover can be saved for later use. Place the pork belly on a small roasting pan, to catch the excess curing ingredients that fall off. Thoroughly coat the entire small slab of pork belly with the salt and sugar curing mixture. Note: For the flavorings, just season like you would a regular piece of meat! A large amount of spice is not necessary, because the meat will be in contact with the flavored cure for seven days. Season the small pork belly slab with a few generous pinches of Himalayan black salt. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of powdered dried mango evenly over the pork belly. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of chat masala over the pork belly. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of cayenne pepper over the pork belly. No black pepper or white pepper is needed! Both of those peppers are part of the chat masala spice mixture. Place the seasoned salted and sugared small pork belly slab into a large zip lock bag. Scrape the seasoning and salt that fell off of the pork belly into the pan together and place it into the zip lock bag with the pork belly. Add 1 extra tablespoon of Kosher salt to the bag to ensure a healthy salt curing level. Press the excess air out of the zip lock bag and seal the bag. Place the bag in a container in case it leaks. Write the curing start time and date and finish time and date down and keep it in plain sight. Once every 12 hours, pick the bag up and shake it, so the brine evenly coats the meat. Flip the meat, so the same side is not always facing down. The outer pork meat should darken to a beef like color after 4 to 5 days of curing. Open the bag once a day and check the aroma. There should be no hint of decay or contamination in the odor. If the meat becomes badly discolored or if there is a foul odor, then discard the meat. By 7 days you should have a nicely cured piece of pork belly. Remove the pork belly from the bag and pat it dry with a clean dry towel. Cut about ten strips of bacon to make a BLT with. Save the rest of the bacon for more recipes or portion the remaining bacon and freeze it for later use.
of whole grain wheat bread. Spread a thin layer of mayonnaise on the toast. (optional) Place a layer of trimmed Belgian Endive lettuce on one slice of the toasted bread. Place a few thin slices of ripe beefsteak tomato on the lettuce. (Beefsteak tomatoes are rather big and they have a great tomato flavor!) Place the crispy cooked Mango Chat Masala Cured Bacon slices on the tomato. Place the top slice of bread on the sandwich. Cut the BLT in half and place it on a plate. Garnish the plate with a sliced peach or a fruit of your choice. Serve with an ice cold Mexican beer like Modelo or a beverage of your choice!
with no problem, so a
cure is well within a safe food handling range
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