Equilibrium Curing - Our preferred and most accurate method of curing.
Apply a cure of 3% salt to the weight of the meat, along with the seasoning mix and sodium nitrate. The salt in the cure is typically balanced out with an equal weight of sugar.
To find 3% simply multiply the weight of the meat by 0.03)
Leave the meat in the bag for a minimum of three days. A 3% cure will ensure the meat is salted, preventing the growth of pathogenic bacteria, while still leaving it palatable.
Use a zip lock bag provided to help create a mini vacuum. This will speed up the curing process and increasing its accuracy. Add your meat and cure to the bag. Squeeze as much air out of the bag, and fold the loose section over before zipping it shut.
Salt-Box Curing - Traditional curing method
This is the old school way of curing. Add the meat to a zip lock bag and completely cover it in salt so its surface is no longer visible. Now leave the meat to cure for one day per kilo of meat.
Now apply the seasoning mix and sodium nitrates and leave for a further day per kilo.
Drying in your fridge
Once your meat has been cured the next step is to dry it. In this process, evaporation will remove moisture, making it a less desirable environment for harmful bacteria. As the meat dries it will simultaneously intensify in flavour.
Wrap the meat in muslin cloth: the breathable fabric will slow down the drying of its surface and ensure a more even drying rate. When meat drys the moisture from its interior works its way to the exterior and evaporates from its surface. If drying occurs too quickly the outside of the meat will fully dry and harden before moisture from its interior has had time to begin its journey outward.
To dry your meat in the fridge, secure the muslin with a few pieces of butcher’s twine, and hang it using the meat hook. Ensure the entire surface of the meat is free for air to circulate around it. You can also dry the meat on a wire rack, but the meat must be rotated every few days.
Your meat is ready when it weighs in at two-thirds of its original weight.
*To find the desired final weight of your meat simply multiply the original weight by 0.66, e.g. 1kg = 1000 x 0.66 = 666g*
Northern Cure Home Curing Kits
For all the tools and guidance you need to create your very own dry-cured bacon at home we have put together a handy kit.