In a recent meander through the internet, I somehow stumbled across an article about the ease and wonderfulness of curing your own bacon.
And I said, Whoa.
‘Cause, I mean, who doesn’t love bacon? And who wouldn’t love it even more if it was easily and wonderfully self-cured? I was chubbed up and hooked. Gimmee, gimmee, I thought.
So I approached Miss Carol with the idea. She looked at me a little skeptically again, like she always does with my new ideas and shook her head again and said, ok, yeah, why not?
I practically skipped to the Southern Packing Plant, I was so excited. I walked in and the counter guy in white doctor coat and hair net asked if he could help me.
I’d like some pork belly, I said. I want to make some bacon, I said.
He smiled and said, No problem. And he went back into the backroom of these places.
After awhile he re-emerged and hoisted what looked like a heavy fatty rug up onto the knife scarred stainless steel table to weigh it. Twelve pounds, he said. That’ll be thirty-six dollars, he said.
I swallowed hard. I only wanted about a pound, I said.
The counter guy hefted the yellowy, fatty rug thing and said, sorry we only sell the whole belly.
So thinking that maybe he’d gone back into the backroom and carved my future bacon off of a hapless pig, I gulped and said, OK.
He smiled and wrapped it all up in brown paper and I paid him, feeling like I’d maybe made another mistake and drove home.
When I got home, I was surprised. Miss Carol thought it was a great deal. Three bucks a pound for bacon?, she exclaimed, let’s do this thing!
And so we did. We cut the belly up and skinned it and rubbed the seasonings on it and put it in the refrigerator to cure and we’ll see in a week or so.
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