If you haven’t tried making homemade bacon, you’re missing out on a real treat. The hardest part of making bacon is waiting for it to cure. Traditional Canadian Bacon is different from the American version in that the Canadian way is to roll the bacon in peameal before cooking (cornmeal is an easily obtained substitute).
The American version of Canadian Bacon omits the peameal and is usually smoked. We’ll start with a back pork loin (not tenderloin). I like to trim most of the fat from the loin. Next comes the pickle cure – pink salt (Prague Powder #1), brown sugar, pickling salt, water, garlic and spices.
At this stage, we’ll want to divide the pork loin in half and submerge it in the pickle cure. Cover and let the bacon cure in your refrigerator for 10 days. After the cure is complete, you have a few options – you can coat the cured bacon loin with peameal, or yellow cornmeal, for Canadian Peameal bacon.
This Canadian Peameal bacon is ready to cook whole, slice and grill, or fry in butter and serve on a hot biscuit. It’s great for breakfast! Another tasty option for the uncooked bacon….kabobs! Cube the bacon, and combine it with your favorite veggies. Just brush the kabobs with oil and sprinkle with pepper before grilling.
Finally, my absolute favorite way to prepare the American version of Canadian bacon is smoked. For this I use the Performance™ 4 Burner Gas Grill by Char-Broil with the TRU-Infrared™ Cooking System, and my handy Grill Infusion Cooker. The recipe for this version follows.
There are many options for using both kinds of bacon. Let your imagination run wild. Thanks for looking!
Make your own Canadian bacon to use on biscuits, as kabobs or on a pizza.
- 1 gallon cool water
- 6 teaspoons pink salt (Prague Powder #1)
- 1 tablespoon juniper berries
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon whole cloves
- 1 teaspoon allspice
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 3/4 cups pickling salt
- 5 pound pork loin, divided in half
- Combine the cool water with brine cure ingredients.
- Stir to dissolve salts and sugar.
- Trim fat from pork loin
- Divide loin in half and submerge in the brine cure. Weigh the loin down with a plate if needed to make sure it is submerged.
- Cover and let the loin cure for 10 days under refrigeration.
- Remove cured loin from brine. Roll in peameal or yellow cornmeal,
- The bacon is ready to slice and fry, grill or cook whole.
- Tie the loin with butcher's twine for uniform size.
- Sprinkle the loin with cracked black pepper.
- Place the loin inside of the Grill Top Infuser with smoking chips added.
- Smoke the bacon covered for one hour. Remove the Grill Top Infuser lid for the second hour of cooking.
- Smoke with indirect heat until the bacon reaches an internal temperature of 150 degrees, about 2 hours. The bacon is ready to eat or use in recipes.
The bacon cures for 10 days. Smoking to an internal temperature of 150 degrees in the Grill Top Infuser takes about 2 hours.