Cultivate Simple Podcast in iTunes Chiot's Run on Facebook Chiot's Run on Twitter Chiot's Run on Pinterest Chiot's Run on Flickr RSS Feed StumbleUpon

Bacon, Canadian Bacon, and Sausage

November 21st, 2013

Slaughtering two pigs amounts to loads of work, thankfully I arranged my schedule so I could take a few days off. Yesterday my entire day was spent making bacon, Canadian bacon and sausage. Mr Chiots helped with the sausage in the evening, that chore is easier when there are two hands. I know you’re probably sick of hearing about pork, but it’s what is filling my day so it’s what I’m thinking about and what I’m doing. I thought some of you might be interested in the recipes and techniques I’m using for curing some of meat.
bourbon bacon 1
Bacon, hams and most cured meats are extremely easy to make. I made bacon a few years and and was amazed at the simplicity of the process. Essentially you salt a piece of meat, and then smoke it if you want, or not. I highly recommend giving it a try if you can, you won’t be disappointed in the results. If you’re used to buying regular bacon from the grocery store, your homemade bacon will taste nothing like it.
bourbon bacon 3
If you are ever lucky enough to have fresh pork belly in your kitchen, here are a few recipes that I’m using. I used half of one belly to make German Bacon, the remainder was used to make . Another whole pork belly was used to make Ventreche, or French bacon. Two entire pork bellies were used to make classic bacon using the recipe from The River Cottage Cookbook. The last half pork belly was used to develop my own recipe which was made with bourbon, bourbon steeped with vanilla beans, sea salt, freshly ground pepper and a pinch of sweet cinnamon and nutmeg. I’ll smoke half of this and leave half unsmoked, it will be tweaked for next year and will hopefully become my signature bacon.  I’m thinking this one is going to be very good.
bourbon bacon 2
I made Canadian bacon using this recipe, I’m pretty excited to try this out.
canadian bacon
It’s an amazing thing to cure meat with salt. I also like knowing that the sea salt I’m using is rich in magnesium, a mineral that many people are deficient in nowadays. Being that I can be a bit of an insomniac and have a tendency to crave salt, I’m most likely a little deficient in this mineral. Making my food as nutrient dense as possible is one of the reasons I grow, raise and process my own. My pigs were fed a varied diet, along with molasses, minerals and sea salt to make sure their meat is as rich in minerals as possible.

Have you ever wondered if you’re deficient in any vitamin/mineral?

15 Comments to “Bacon, Canadian Bacon, and Sausage”
  1. Natasha on November 21, 2013 at 6:56 am

    I don’t have to wonder anymore! I found a doctor who will run those tests. I always run low magnesium and a few other things. Life is better with more magnesium. :) The bacon looks delicious!!

    Reply to Natasha's comment

  2. kristin @ going country on November 21, 2013 at 7:18 am

    I just love that you’re creating a “signature bacon.” My kind of woman.

    Reply to kristin @ going country's comment

  3. Adelina Anderson on November 21, 2013 at 7:32 am

    We cured pork bellies a few months ago. Since we also make maple syrup, we combined the belly, cure, and maple syrup. The bacon came out fantastic.

    Reply to Adelina Anderson's comment

  4. Nebraska Dave on November 21, 2013 at 8:39 am

    Susy, it’s been such a treat to follow your journey through the process of raising and processing your pigs. Many stories have been posted in your blog about those pigs. Don’t ever think that we readers get bored with reading about what fills your day. It’s what actually draws me to your blog. You don’t just list a few steps on how to process a pig but actually walk us through the process as you are doing it. I for one never get tired of reading about real life.

    Have a great real life day and eat some sausage for me will you. :-)

    Reply to Nebraska Dave's comment

  5. Sara on November 21, 2013 at 9:57 am

    I’m with Nebraska Dave in that I’m totally fascinated in the pork “journey”. I listened to the podcast yesterday–thank you so much for sharing your experience.

    We just made our first very basic smoked bacon this summer, based on the Trout Caviar book—and it’s SO GOOD we can’t imagine eating it any other way.

    Reply to Sara's comment

  6. Erika on November 21, 2013 at 11:05 am

    It all looks so interesting and fun actually. You seem to be enjoying it as well.


    Reply to Erika's comment

  7. amy on November 21, 2013 at 11:54 am

    This is all so neat!! I love that you have been researching all your options and are now putting them into effect! I think that is just the coolest thing that you are going to have a signature bacon…lol!!…..most girls crave a signature look…or parfum….but not you….no… it must be bacon:)) Your my kind of gal! Just wonderful…ALL….of it!

    Reply to amy's comment

  8. Deb on November 21, 2013 at 12:03 pm

    Since there are the 2 of you howw ill you eat all that pork by yourselves before it freezer burns? Just curious, hoiw large were the hogs hanging weight? I would love to do this but don’t have the place to raise a pig and know there needs to be 2 together. 2 of us would take along time to use up. I remembr helping witht he curing process of hams and bacons, nothing better tasting than that with brown sugar, salt, peper,a nd saltpeter, this was 40+ yrs. ago. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply to Deb's comment

    • Susy on November 22, 2013 at 12:11 am

      We are actually giving a lot of the pork away to friends & family for Christmas. They were around 320 before slaughter, we didn’t have a scale for weighing them after slaughter. I’ve weighed some of the pieces but not all. So far around 60-70 lbs of bacon, 85 lbs of sausage, each ham seems to weigh around 20lbs (there are 4), then we have roasts, lard, hocks, etc. The scraps are all being fed to the dogs and some to the chickens. The chickens will also enjoy some of the lard in their winter rations.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  9. Sierra N Hampl on November 21, 2013 at 3:53 pm

    You’re amazing! Thanks for sharing!

    Reply to Sierra N Hampl's comment

  10. Miranda on November 21, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    YES. this post is bookmarked. I’ll be curing my own bacon of Red Wattle this winter and hope to make some rabbit/pork sausages in teh coming years. I’m workign on the duck breast prosciutto now – amazing that you can just salt something and hang it in your pantry to become delicious.

    Reply to Miranda's comment

  11. Lorna on November 21, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    Wow. It all sounds so amazing. I’ve wanted pigs for a long long time now, but our ‘right to farm’ town doesn’t allow pigs (people have them, but you have to have good neighbors who don’t tattle!). I’ve heard/seen The River Cottage Cookbook mentioned a few times recently; I think I should check it out. And, your signature bacon sounds fantastic!

    Reply to Lorna's comment

    • Susy on November 22, 2013 at 12:12 am

      It’s a good cookbook, you’ll like it. I received it as a Christmas gift last year.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  12. Colleen on November 22, 2013 at 3:50 pm

    I echo Nebraska Dave, love hearing about your daily life, it’s never boring or dull. Thanks for sharing your daily events with all of us.
    I am hoping by growing more of our own food that we will be getting more of the right kinds of vitamins and minerals, but yes, I have wondered if we get enough.

    Reply to Colleen's comment

  13. Egon Wittmann on November 24, 2013 at 9:21 am

    I have lots of memories about slaughtering pigs from my childhood. It was always a whole family affair involving three generations as well as a couple of dogs and a herd of cats looking for scraps. It was at my grandmother’s house where everything took place. She had what looked like a wood-fired hot-tub that we used to cook some of the meat; mostly inerts and sausage meat in pickling jars. Back in the days, inerts were still considered some of the prized pieces of meat. On a cold winter’s day, with wood fired heat warming up the house, add some home grown food and family and friends, you are set…

    It is great to see that you are connecting with your family and your community with home grown food. Getting back to the olden days can’t be that hard! :-). It sure is great bringing pleasure to my family along with neighbors, friends, and even my young daughter’s friends.

    Reply to Egon Wittmann's comment

Comments RSS

Leave a Reply

Reading & Watching

Shop through these links and I get a few cents each time. It's not much, but it allows me to buy a new cookbook or new gardening book every couple months. I appreciate your support!


This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

Read previous post:
Checking One Off the List

*Warning* real butchering shots in this post, if you don't like the sight of meat, read something from the archives....