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Smoking meat in the oven??

I recently found a nice recipe for homemade BACON and when I went to my local Korean supermarket, found that they carry pork belly on a regular basis. So now I want to try making my own bacon - curing and then smoking.

My question is about smoking things in an oven. We do have a smoker (Big Green Egg) but since we now live in a condo/townhouse we get concerned neighbours calling the concierge when we use it because they think there is a fire on our balcony (we downsized to a condo/townhome from our single family home when we moved to a different city).

Anyway, since there is a lot of smoke produced when smoking something, is it feasible to smoke something such as bacon in an oven inside your home? Anyone have any luck with this?

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  1. Mate, the only thing I can imagine that would be worse than having the neighbours calling the concierge because there's smoke outside the condo would be having the neighbours calling the concierge because there's smoke INSIDE the condo.

    I think you're hosed.

    1. Oh, I don't think so. The amount of smoke you have had outside, would now be inside. Every piece of fabric in your house would smell of bacon. The carpets, drapes, sofa.... the smell would linger, and your neighbors would hate it.

      Can you take the egg to a community area, away from the condo to do the smoking? Something like the edge of the parking lot or even a local park that allows open flames?

      6 Replies
      1. re: smtucker

        " Every piece of fabric in your house would smell of bacon. The carpets, drapes, sofa.... the smell would linger..." That's not such a bad thing, is it?? Lol.

        The reason why I asked this question is that I've googled "smoking meats in the oven" and have seen a lot of blog posts on it (example, http://www.instructables.com/id/Oven-...). Of course, I can't believe everything I read on the internet.

        Just thought I'd get an idea from fellow Chowhounders on the topic, as there are lot of experts on here!

        Looks like I'll have to ask my hubby to fire up the Big Green Egg and warn neighbours and the concierge's office that we'll be smoking bacon outside!!


        1. re: ladooShoppe

          Me: "you'll certainly get SOMETHING, but maybe not the perfect product you're looking for."
          Instructables website: "Sure, they're not exactly like real smoker-smoked ribs"

          I'm not an expert, just a guy tinkering with smoke once in awhile, I say give it a try and experiment. You certainly have a lot more humour than the Chow police...I don't think its the dumbest question on the board! ;-)

          1. re: porker

            Oh yeah, it was just friendly banter with biggreenmat as we spilled over from a Montreal smokede meat thread...

        2. re: smtucker

          I smoke stuff on the stovetop all the time, in a Cameron stove top smoker. The house smells delicious during the smoking, but it's not full of smoke nor does it smell of it afterward, it's gone within hours. I wouldn't worry one bit about smoking foods indoors. I use the small Cameron's hickory granules/pellets with the smoker.

          1. re: mcf

            You've done a 5lb slab of pork belly? Really?

            I do vegetables and fish on my stovetop smoker all the time, but the smoking time is far shorter. Please tell us more! I would love to smoke meats all winter, but the time required daunted me so I only smoke meat outdoors during the months that are about 50ยบ.

            1. re: smtucker

              Nope, but I have done several lbs of brisket. Makes the house smell nice, but it doesn't get smoky and it goes away really quickly. I hate lingering food smells, I wouldn't do it indoors in the winter if it hung around the air or the furnishings. This smoker is not good for hours and hours and hours unless you refresh the wood chips, but I guess that's true of any smoker.

        3. You could probably try something like a stovetop smoker
          but like biggm, I think you might be hosed.

          I feel the question is along the lines of making a cake with Splenda, or making crab cakes with simulated crab: you'll certainly get SOMETHING, but maybe not the perfect product you're looking for.
          I think you can certainly experiment.
          First theres the curing aspect. Cure the belly well and you're halfway to baconville!
          Cure and fry up some slices - maybe you'll like it just this way.
          After that you can try to add liquid smoke and cook low and slow in the oven, or maybe braise in a liquid-smoke based concoction.
          Maybe invite the nieghbors (and the concierge) over when trying to smoke on the balcony?

          1. How about making pancetta instead of bacon. The only difference is pancetta is not smoked and typically is cured with garlic and various spices in addition to salt and sugar (and nitrate if you are so inclined). Purists will disagree, but you can substitute one for the other in most recipes. If you want to make bacon, here's a thread about cold smoking on the cheap that might be helpful.


            1. I cannot address home made bacon but making low n slow smoked ribs and brisket in your situation. In the oven. Liquid smoke works great. The premium brand is Wright's and a little goes a long way. With our cooking a bottle lasts 12-24 months http://www.amazon.com/Wrights-natural...

                1. re: Cameraman

                  Commercial bacon (when actually smoked) is usually cold smoked, but it can be smoked hot or cold, depending on what you want.

                2. So, I finally found my Charcuterie book (by Michael Rhulman, ISBN-10: 0393058298). I was glad to have found it. The author suggests a dry rub of kosher salt, pink salt, brown sugar and peppercorns. I added some maple syrup into the mix. After curing for 7 days in the fridge, he roasts the belly in the oven at 200F for 2 hours. I am on day 2 of 7 and am very excited. I'll let you know how it turns out. We have declared next Sunday, "Bacon Day." Thanks to all for your suggestions!!
                  And I think I will look into a stovetop smoker.

                  10 Replies
                  1. re: ladooShoppe

                    This is the recipe that I use as well, though I use maple sugar instead of maple syrup. I had forgotten that he does it in the oven since I always use the smoker! I find that my bellies need 8 days of curing before the texture is right. Start picking your bread recipe, get those lovely tomatoes and you will have one of the best BLT's in the world!

                    1. re: smtucker

                      Heeeeeeeeeeee, smtucker, BLTs were the same suggestion that my dad had. We have a couple of his garden tomatoes left! I poked at the belly today when I flipped it, and it is firming up quite nicely. I'll let you know the results when I roast it!!

                      Maple sugar is a great suggestion too; I'll have to pick some up next spring from my favorite sugar bush.

                      Thanks again all!! As I said, I will keep you posted with the results.

                      1. re: ladooShoppe

                        All: I just wanted to update you on the pork belly that is curing in my fridge. Here is a pic of it! We'll probably roast it up on Sunday afternoon.

                        1. re: ladooShoppe

                          All this cure talk had itching. I picked up 2 bellies, 2 hocks, and a blade roast on Sunday. The hocks and beef plate are in a "standard" wet cure and the bellies are in a brown sugar/salt dry cure.

                          I hope to smoke the bellies early next week.

                          1. re: ladooShoppe

                            Sounds exciting! Let us know how it turns out...

                            1. re: Kajikit

                              Hey all, been a busy couple of weeks but wanted to update you on the bacon. It was absolutely delicious!
                              Tasted like "real" bacon and crisped up nicely. I made sure to blanch it before I fried it up since the pieces we sampled were quite salty. I read in Ruhlman's book that blanching any bacon before frying it helps to make it crispy.
                              We made BLTs and breakfast for dinner. On Saturday night a couple friends came over and I fried up a bunch for them to try. We stood silently in the kitchen eating slices of bacon. I will definitely do this again. A friend from out of town is coming to visit and she has requested my homemade bacon.
                              Thanks to all for your advice and expertise!

                              1. re: ladooShoppe

                                Thank you so much for the update! So pleased that your bacon foray was such a success.

                                1. re: ladooShoppe

                                  I'm surprised that it tasted like "real" bacon. I've read that the bacon we're used to tasting is cold smoked, and it sounds like you hot smoked yours. I've tried the Ruhlman and Polcyn "Charcuterie" bacon recipe, and was not impressed with the results (everything else I've made from that book as been a grand slam, on the other hand). When I did some research after the less-than-spectacular bacon effort, I read that in order to get that familiar bacon flavor, you need to cold smoke the cured belly. But I've also read many folks, such as yourself, claim excellent results when hot smoking.

                                  What am I missing?

                        2. re: ladooShoppe

                          Just a suggestion;
                          Since you won't be "smoking" in the oven, howsabout cutting a smallish piece of the belly (maybe a 1/4?) and add a bit of liquid smoke to this piece during the cure?
                          After the oven treatment, you can see if the liquid smoke did anything or not.

                          1. re: porker

                            Just saw ATK make 'pulled pork'. They put liquid smoke in the brine, and smoked paprika in the dry rub. Then slow roasted it with a foil cover, followed by a finish uncovered to develop some 'bark'.

                          1. re: porker

                            porker, that's SO helpful! thanks so much for the link.