You can make homemade smoked bacon in a regular kitchen without a specialized smokehouse. I propose a method that at some points surpasses even regular smokehouses, since only a handful of wood chips are required and direct contact with smoke is excluded.
To carry out smoking, you will need:
- old unnecessary pan with a tight lid, and even better, a Soviet pressure cooker;
- aluminum food foil;
- shallow plate;
- 2 metal coasters for hot pots;
- wood chips.
How to smoke
For smoking, I use an old Soviet pressure cooker, in which the lid is tightly attracted, which completely eliminates the release of smoke. It is possible to use ordinary pots and cauldrons. In this case, you need to wrap the cover with 2-3 layers of foil, making a gasket. This will also help if there is a hole in the lid for steam to escape.
To facilitate further washing of the pan, a layer of foil must be laid at its bottom. In this case, the ash and cinder will remain on it. Next, I put a handful of wood chips from alder or fruit trees, it is possible to apply a mixture of chips in the same proportion. You can prepare fuel yourself by cutting a branch with a knife, or buy it in a supermarket. Typically, wood chips are sold in a department with barbecue coals and skewers. If salted lard is used, the fuel must be soaked in water for 10 minutes. In this case, the chips will emit smoke longer. Since I smoke boiled fat, I use dry wood chips.
On top of a layer of foil and wood chips I set a stand for hot. It is round, specially selected for the pan, so it is put right on the bottom. In the case of the use of a cauldron instead of a pressure cooker, the stand simply sank onto its walls, which is not critical.
I set a plate on it to collect molten fat flowing down from the fat. He can’t get on the chips. The contact of fat and fuel is undesirable, since the resulting smoke will be completely different from what is needed for smoking.
A second stand is installed on the plate.
Fat is laid on it.
Due to the fact that it lies on the grate, the smoke will envelop the piece evenly.
I close the pan tightly and set it on fire. I open the burner for a maximum of 5 minutes to activate the process of smoldering wood chips. After that, I reduce the fire to a minimum in order to only maintain smoke emission, and keep it for 20 minutes. When using raw salted fat, it is necessary to keep it for 15 minutes on a high fire, and for 20-25 minutes on a small fire, which is permissible, since in this case the wood chips are soaked and they will not ignite.
After time, remove the pan from the heat and leave for a couple of hours. The lid must not be opened. During this time, the smoke is finally absorbed into the fat, and its residues will settle to the bottom. Subsequently, when you open the lid, it will no longer be. Salo must be refrigerated to solidify. While it is warm, it is cut poorly.
The resulting product is fully consistent with standard hot smoked bacon. Of course, it is not kept as long as cold smoked. The pan fits a bit, so you can cook no more than a kilogram at a time, which you can really eat in a week.
Preparing lard before smoking
- Before smoking, it is necessary to salt or cook lard. The first method allows you to get a classic product, but it requires, depending on the technology used, from several days to 3 weeks. If you pre-cook lard in spices, then you can smoke on the same day.
- The longest method involves wet salting. First pickle is done. Salt is added and dissolved in the volume of water that allows to completely cover the lard. It is required to achieve such a consistency that a chicken egg dipped in brine floats rather than drowns. The lard is placed in the brine and pressed down by the load. It is left for 2-3 weeks, after which it is taken out and soaked in ordinary water for another day.
- Faster is the dry pickling method. It allows you to prepare lard in 3 days. For 1 kg of the product, a mixture of 4 tsp of salt is prepared, as well as one tsp. red and black pepper. A spoonful of tomato paste or juice is added to the mass to get a well-sticking pulp, which is coated with all the pieces. Salo is placed in the refrigerator for 3 days, after which it is taken out and washed from excess coating.
- If you do not want to wait for several days or weeks, the lard can simply be boiled in salt water with the addition of various spices. Coriander, peas, cloves, dill seeds, etc. are used. In this case, the smoking time will be shorter.