Bacon is a tasty treat most of us love to enjoy with a breakfast meal. Though store-bought bacon can be delicious, consider making your own bacon at home using some basic materials and tools. A brining method prepares pork belly to become a cured meat product, and a smoking process gives the bacon a hickory taste you can often find in grocery store bacon. Plus, this type of meat product can be shared with friends as a gift around the holidays.
Create a brine for your bacon. Mix 2 gallons of water with 5 tbsp. salt and 2 tbsp. sugar. You can add other flavors you like, such as onion, garlic, honey, maple syrup or peppercorns.
Pour the brine into a plastic container with a lid, and place the pork belly inside. Place the lid on the container and store in the refrigerator for four days.
Remove the pork belly from the brine and rinse under a faucet. Dry the pork with paper towels, then slice into thin, 1/4 slices.
Place smoke chips over the burners of your smoker. Place the metal disks to the burners back over the burner, then place the grill grate on top of the smoker base. Lay the pork strips out, uncrowded, across the grate.
Place the lid on the smoker and light the burners. Let smoke for 30 minutes to an hours, then remove the bacon. You can store the bacon in the refrigerator for one week, or freeze for up to six months.