Tuesday, July 6, 2010

July 4, Part II

I don't know all the details of acquisition, but Ryan was the recipient of a large pig at the Frothy Monkey just before the holiday weekend, and asked if I'd like to participate in a bacon-smoking ceremony. After answering with some referral to where a bear relieves himself, I stocked up on lump hardwood charcoal and began soaking a couple of fallen hickory limbs from the back hillside.

Ryan had pre-cured the slab with his own secret recipe (which, in the interest of intellectual property rights, I will not divulge), then we added more kosher salt, black pepper, raw sugar and crushed homegrown red peppers. It rested overnight. Thanks to George the cat, I did not.

We started the fire about 8:00am, loaded the slab at 8:30 and about an hour in took our first peek:

six hours later, we had a beautifully smoked pork belly, which, after some sampling accompanied by ooohs and aaaahs, cooled in the refrigerator to become...

Monday morning bacon with multi-grain waffles.

This is the best bacon ever to pass my lips, but because this is not something we should eat every day, the last slices are now in the freezer, safely awaiting the next occasion. Oh, and there are a few small chunks saved for limited use in seasoning vegetables, soups, pastas, salads, and anything else where you might say "you know what would be perfect in this?"
Thanks, Ryan, for sharing.

July 4, Part I

Happy Independence Day!
What a great weekend we had! After an initial delay because of Abbott's fever, everyone arrived Saturday and stayed until Monday. There was much fun on the new swing set,

(Thanks, MomaJo!)
on the patio

and on the new Slip n' Slide and pool

(Thanks, Jami!).

There was much healthy grillin' and many healthy meals including Healthy Chocolate and Healthy Energy drinks...

(we count the pound cake and low-fat ice cream because as healthy because we added fresh strawberries).

And we discovered the joy of home-smoked bacon (see Part II).