Home Cured Bacon

I’ve wanted to try my hand at the mysterious arts of curing and smoking that make up charcuterie for a while now. Luckily for a recent birthday I was given Michael Ruhlman’s excellent book on the subject. This bacon is my first attempt at home curing using just a simple dry cure mix of salt, sugar and prague powder (a mix of salt and sodium nitrate, which prevents botulism). The pork belly is left to cure for a week then slowly roasted in the oven to replicate a hot smoked process.

I had to try a piece as soon as it came out of the oven. If you’ve never tried fresh bacon you’re missing out on an absolute treat! Once it cooled I sliced off another piece and grilled it to check the final flavour. It really is superb and I can’t wait to try it at the weekend with some eggs.


Atlantis at The Mariner – leaving my twenties behind

My twin brother and I turned 30 on Wednesday. Don’t think that’s quite sunk in yet. Putting aside our grief for lost youth we’d arranged a family meal at Atlantis, the restaurant attached to the Mariner Hotel on Great Western Road, Aberdeen. I used to live near this restaurant and had been eyeing it up for a few years, waiting for an excuse to give it a go. A fully booked first choice (The Tolbooth) was the excuse we needed.
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