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Uncured Bacon, Hams, etc...  RSS feed

 
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Being that we're all dealing with pigs here the topic of cure comes up for making bacon, ham, various cured and smoked sausages, etc. I've been making uncured smoked hot dogs with our meat at a smokehouse using my own recipe for over a decade. Last year I developed recipes for corn pork and bacon. There is quite a bit of confusion about the term cure, and even bacon. The USDA has regulatory definitions that if you're using celery salt or the like to make bacon you are _required_ to say "Uncured Bacon" so this isn't a marketing thing so much as a regulatory requirement. After we have had our uncured bacon on the market for a few months I wrote up an article about the topic of "Uncuring" to try to help demystify the issue. See:

http://sugarmtnfarm.com/2017/09/17/uncured-bacon/


-Walter
 
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Walter, I am very respectful about what you wrote in the pig forum, but for this, I need to check with you....
What is the real difference between cured and uncured? Is it about FERMENTATION?

I have come across some informations about the NEED for pork to be fermented, or else there is a health hazard. By memory, I think it was about aggregation of something in the blood.... It could thus explain one of the real reason of pork prohibition in some societies... if they did not know how to transform this meat to be safe! So it seems it was not only about parasites!

Pork seems to become fully edible for us after fermenting, which is the case of cured meat, that you can keep out of the fridge.
For eating the fresh meat, there is also a solution: marinade. Wine and vinegar are themselves fermented products...

I have no idea if lemon juice is ok, and I would be interrested to know this....
I have also no idea how long is enough marinade.
 
Walter Jeffries
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Xisca Nicolas wrote:Walter, I am very respectful about what you wrote in the pig forum, but for this, I need to check with you....
What is the real difference between cured and uncured? Is it about FERMENTATION?



No, it's not at all the same. Totally different processes. I would recommend the excellent book, "The Meat We Eat" for reading on the science.

Xisca Nicolas wrote:I have come across some informations about the NEED for pork to be fermented, or else there is a health hazard. By memory, I think it was about aggregation of something in the blood.... It could thus explain one of the real reason of pork prohibition in some societies... if they did not know how to transform this meat to be safe! So it seems it was not only about parasites!



That's bogus scare tactics by vegan/vegetarian/religious nut jobs. Ignore it. It has no scientific backing.

Cook your meat. USDA says 145°F in the center and then rest for 3 minutes for cuts and 165°F for ground. Pork same as beef, lamb, goat.

Xisca Nicolas wrote:Pork seems to become fully edible for us after fermenting, which is the case of cured meat, that you can keep out of the fridge.



Old style curing did make it safe to store hanging in the kitchen due to the lower water content (Aw) produced by salting and the heavy use of nitrates/nitrites.
Modern curing does not use that much salt or nitrates/nitrites. You would find the old style too salty I suspect.

Xisca Nicolas wrote:For eating the fresh meat, there is also a solution: marinade. Wine and vinegar are themselves fermented products...
I have no idea if lemon juice is ok, and I would be interrested to know this....
I have also no idea how long is enough marinade.



Changing the acidity, the pH, is one part of making shelf stable products. There is a lot of science behind this that I would strongly urge you learn before messing with it.

-Walter
 
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That book is very expensive. I'm curious why do you recommend that over other charcuterie books or for that matter other food science books. I have Charcuterie by Michael Ruhlman, forgive my spelling if it's wrong, and I have On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee, which is well regarded as the food science bible. I have done some curing of bacons, hams, sausages but have used nitrites/nitrates when called for. When I've tried uncured products I haven't liked the look or taste of them, what do you do to fix this, if anything?
 
Walter Jeffries
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Stacy Witscher wrote:That book is very expensive. I'm curious why do you recommend that over other charcuterie books or for that matter other food science books. I have Charcuterie by Michael Ruhlman, forgive my spelling if it's wrong, and I have On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee, which is well regarded as the food science bible. I have done some curing of bacons, hams, sausages but have used nitrites/nitrates when called for. When I've tried uncured products I haven't liked the look or taste of them, what do you do to fix this, if anything?



Because it is very worth it. Buy used.
 
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I think Xisca was referring to this study: https://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/food-features/how-does-pork-prepared-in-various-ways-affect-the-blood/ (definitely not vegan propaganda ). This seems to indicate that eating unmarinated/uncured pork has an effect on blood coagulation or clotting. Which apparently is a bad thing..

I think they wanted to do a follow-up study, but to my knowledge this has happened yet.
 
Walter Jeffries
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I'm a bit dubious of anything from Weston Price as I've seen too much garbage come out of there. If I see them say too many things that I know are simply wrong then they lack credibility on the things they say where I don't know.
 
Xisca Nicolas
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Mark Dirksen wrote:I think Xisca was referring to this study: https://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/food-features/how-does-pork-prepared-in-various-ways-affect-the-blood/ (definitely not vegan propaganda ). This seems to indicate that eating unmarinated/uncured pork has an effect on blood coagulation or clotting. Which apparently is a bad thing..

I think they wanted to do a follow-up study, but to my knowledge this has happened yet.



Yes thanks! I do not keep track of what stays in my mind! I eat a carnivore diet, so I would not believe any of the vegan propaganda! I could even write a book about the vegan propaganda... I agree for individuals to choose their diet, but not to use arguments that try to make others afraid!

Walter, I am still interrested to know what is the curing process you use, if this is not fermentation.... I donot think that nitrates salts were used "before". But fermenting like the french saucisson, or whole ham, could be done only with certain weather features. Where I live, people used only salt, because the climate is maritime.

No, pH as I mentionned was not for shelf life, as it was food preparation just before eating.

It happens that I think this information about fermenting can be right. Not only pork had been banned (and the origin of taboos are always based either on health, or on stopping people for some time, when a wild population was lowering. It was a way to help people "do something" with less effort than forcing oneself).

I thought it was about ancient times hygiena, but then I was puzzled when I learned that there are other places in the world where pork is not banned but not allowed to some people when ill, and curiously especially with auto-immune diseases...
 
Walter Jeffries
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Walter, I am still interrested to know what is the curing process you use, if this is not fermentation.... I donot think that nitrates salts were used "before". But fermenting like the french saucisson, or whole ham, could be done only with certain weather features. Where I live, people used only salt, because the climate is maritime.



Did you read the article I linked to at the top of this thread? That explains it. This is not fermentation.
 
Yeah. What he said. Totally. Wait. What? Sorry, I was looking at this tiny ad:
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https://permies.com/t/96847/Pros-cons-perennial-biennial-annual
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