- Differ in raw material. Both are available from the pork belly. But with bacon, we can use other cuts of pork such as back, loins, throat, and flanks.
- Differ in the type of salting, smoking, seasoning. Pork belly varies from 2 to 4 months, while we can only season bacon for a few days.
- The pork belly has more fat than the bacon. We process it with salt and black pepper. The bacon instead is treated with salt, spices, and sugars.
- The consumption and use in the kitchen are also different. Pork belly is a typical cured meat, while bacon is a widely used ingredient in Nordic cuisine. Bacon dishes are famous, such as the typical English breakfast served with eggs, toast and sausages.
The fight between bacon and pork belly is an eternal struggle for lasting years. Although they may seem similar, these two famous cured types of meat are different. If you love to talk about pork belly VS bacon, this article is for you. Here, we will explain what is the difference between pork belly and bacon.
Also, we will try to answer some of the big questions that have always plagued cooking enthusiasts. For example, what is the original recipe for the pork belly? Is there a difference between bacon and pork belly? Which part of the pig does the bacon come from? Get ready, we have enough topics and cured meats for everyone!
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Types, Flavors, Recipes: All About Pork Belly VS Bacon
Bacon and pork belly are typical cured meats that are famous and appreciated all over the world, depending on their variants. Both are available from pork, subsequently processed with salt and pepper.
The difference between bacon and pork belly lies in the original cuts of meat from which they derive. We will get the bacon from the ventral part of the pig, while the pork belly is the consequence of processing from the throat and by the neck.
The difference between bacon and pork belly is a difference that questions many experts and cooking enthusiasts. It is because both cured types of meat are ideal for preparing typical dishes of cuisine.
Although the use of diced pork belly is a widespread trend, bacon is the proper king of the ingredients for burgers. It also presents in the original recipe of pasta. For this reason, chefs and lovers of American cuisine have no doubts. So, if you are preparing one of these two dishes and you do not know what to choose between bacon and pork belly, trust our advice!
What Is Bacon?
The bacon is a sausage very well-known and widespread in the work, produced in various areas of the peninsula. We will get this typical product from a specific part of the pig that is subsequently processed, sectioned, packaged, and cured.
The bacon is one of the Italian sausages made from a single piece of an anatomical whole pig. It is the cut of pork that wraps around the animal’s belly, including the muscles of the chest and abdomen. Along with the fatty tissue of the body part, it goes from the retrosternal to the inguinal region, including the lateral part of the breasts. It borders on pork lard, another type of Italian salami on the market made from the lard that forms between the cervical and part of the pig’s back.
The processing of bacon knows few variations. However, we can say that the methods of preparation of the bacon are standard. It includes various treatments including trimming, skinning, and decreasing. Once prepared, we subjected the piece of pork to salting, packaging, and seasoning.
The salting of the bacon is ideal by hand. The cook will spring the surface of the salami with salt, black pepper, cloves, garlic, and other spices (including fennel seeds) depending on the region of production. On an industrial level, the salting is in special machinery. It can support this process without altering the organoleptic characteristics of the fat.
At the end of this phase, the bacon is available on special wooden shelves and left to rest at low temperatures with controlled humidity for 15 days. It can last even less in specific cases, depending on the type of local processing of the product.
After salting, we can subject the bacon to both washing and manual scraping to remove any excess salt. At this point of production, the bacon is ready to be packaged and wrapped. In this last phase, the bacon will take on its characteristic color.
The maturation of the bacon takes place in 1 or 2 months in areas with controlled temperature. The taste of bacon can change according to its preparation. It differs according to local traditions. Sometimes, the bacon is bathed in wine vinegar or cooked wine. We can cover it with chili powder.
The bacon can be paired with young red wines, lively or sparkling. It is the drink that helps cleanse the palate and relieve it of excess fat. If you do not know what to combine with bacon, keep in mind that its flavor is sweet and tending towards savory, with spicy aromas.
How To Make The Best Homemade Bacon
All Kinds of Bacon
We subject a few slices of bacon to seasoning. The diced bacon and the bacon, for example, rarely require rest time and seasoning. On the market, there are different bacon depending on the processing to which we subject the piece of pork, including:
- Bacon without rind
- Bacon with rind
- Defatted bacon
- Coppata pancetta, enriched with pork coppa filling
- Stretched bacon
- Rolled bacon
On the market, it is possible to find many types of bacon. Each comes with its history and typicality of production. Among these choices, we find the smoked bacon with smoke got from particular tree trunks. Salumificio Santoro, for example, produces the smoked stretched bacon, processed with salt, pepper, and cooked wine. Then, they smoke with the almond husk and the wood of Fragno, an ancient oak from the Itria Valley.
What Is Pork Belly?
The pork belly results from a cut made up of precious fat. It comes from the head to the shoulder. It is perfect both as a raw salami and, after cooking, to make cotechino and zampone.
The texture of the pork belly differs from the lard. It is the dorsal portion that comes from the belly fat with the small portions of the muscle. It differs from the bacon. Once you get the cut of meat, proceed to the seasoning the belly with salt, pepper, and usual spices. Then move on to smoking.
Recipes With Pork Belly
The pork belly is available in the kitchen for cooking many dishes. The sauce for bucatini, rigatoni, or spaghetti is one of my most favorite. It is the emblem of Italian pasta prepared according to local tradition.
This first course, originally from Amatrice and widespread in Lazio, is prepared with bacon, to be fried with oil, chili, and white wine. Peeled tomatoes are then added and, on the finish, the grated pecorino romano.
There are many recipes of the amatriciana, even unusual and revisited. But they do not betray tradition. The crispy guanciale can dress soups, legumes, risotto with carnaroli rice, pizzas, and vegetables.
Pork Belly Vs Bacon – What’s The Difference?