To follow up on our love of all things bacon, we decided it was time to figure out how to make it. After scouring the Interwebs to compile the steps needed for this process, and stumbled across an article by Wylie Overstreet of Coolmaterial.com that fit us perfectly.
Bacon. It has a wonderful place in human history. Humans have eaten it for thousands of years, traded it as a staple of economies, and most recently, turned it into an internet meme. It’s no mystery why we have a love affair with Bacon. It’s the Christina Hendricks of meat products. The smell of bacon soothes a crying infant. Vegetarians make exceptions for bacon. Bacon is the closest we can get to empirically proving the existence of God. Bacon, for lack of a better word, is The Shit.
All the aforementioned could be said about store-bought bacon. The thing is, I had heard whispers that bacon from scratch—cured, smoked, and cut at home—puts store-bought bacon to profound shame. I didn’t think it was possible to improve on perfection, but I had to find out. And so I bravely set out to into the unknown to discover the lost art of homemade bacon, by which I mean I turned off Extreme Home Makeover, got off my ass and looked it up online.
Let me say straight away that my culinary skills are average at best. But like my ping-pong game, they inexplicably improve with drinking. And so, after reading up, I decided to crack a beer and make some homemade bacon. I discovered that not only is it remarkably easy and cheap, it results in bacon so insanely good you’ll wonder if Jesus came down and pissed on your tongue.
Here’s how you do it.
Step 1: Purchase
Head on down to your local butcher shop. If you don’t know a local butcher, I suggest using a service such as The Internet to locate one. If you don’t have The Internet, then you have bigger things to worry about than making bacon from scratch. Also, you couldn’t even be reading this right now. Moving on.
Ask the butcher for pork belly: it arrives in slabs about 20-30 inches long and about 8 inches across: you’ll recognize them from their familiar bacon-esque cross section. They cost around $3.50 a pound, and you’ll probably want a quarter slab—a piece weighing about 4 to 5 pounds. Make sure the pork belly has the rind (the skin) ON. If you want to be a perfectionist, call your butcher and ask when they get the pork bellies in. Should be once a week. Go on that day to ensure you get the freshest meat.
Once you’ve picked out your pork belly, pay for it and take it home. This part is obvious.
See the rest of the steps at Cool Material.
If you love bacon as much as we do and obviously Wylie Overstreet does check out our new American Bacon shirt over at Gruntstyle.com