Prep: a week
Cook: 2 hours
Start by curing the belly: In a small bowl, combine the pepper, sugar, paprika, salt & curing salt. Place belly on a foil lined tray and pat dry with paper towels. Using half of the cure mix, sprinkle evenly over the surface of the belly, and rub in gently. Turn over and repeat on other side with remaining mix. Place the entire belly and curing mix into a large zip top bag and place in refrigerator for 7 days. Each day the belly should be flipped onto the other side, and the contents (which will transform to a liquid) should be massaged around.
After 7 days, remove from the bag and rinse under water. Pat dry with paper towels, and place back in fridge uncovered (on a rack over a pan to catch any drips) for 24 hours.
Smoke the now cured belly using the apple or cherry wood for three hours at 200f, or until internal temperature reaches 150f.
Store bacon in an airtight plastic bag or container in refrigerator for up to a week, cutting and cooking as required.
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