You're watching Diners, Drive-ins' [sic] and Dives for hours on end for years. You see people, who don't appear to be more brilliant than you, take a pork belly and make bacon.
You're going to then call your local butcher, hopefully Sal at Westwood Prime Meats, and ask him to get you a pork belly, because you can do this.
You pick up this 7 pound pork belly and you ask Sal if it has the skin on, although you're not sure if it should, and he looks at you, pauses, and says "of course," as if to say "what, is this pre-school?"
You take the belly home and you google some "recipes" and determine that ratios don't really matter, and ratios are for heathens, and you put some pink salt (which Amazon.com delivered to your doorstep, for the price of approximately free, given how little you'll use) and regular salt and sugar on it, and you rub it in.
You then put that belly in a zip lock and in a baking dish and put it in your fridge for a week, turning it over once, if you remember.
You go about your life, making pizza, eating at restaurants, blogging and whathaveyou.
After 7 days you take that pork belly out of the fridge. Now it's all tough and hard to the touch.
You then rinse it and put that tough salty belly in your super-awesome smoker (or anything device that provides smoke) for a few hours until the temp hits 140 or 160, depending on who you trust, and it doesn't matter, as long as you suck down a beer or 3 over those coupla hours.
Then you cut the skin off while it's still warm, because warm pig fat cuts like buttah. You'll then notice the skin has hair and nipples on it, and that's hardcore, and you nod knowingly.
If you've got a pair of marbles, you'll fry the skin and eat it right then and there.
Then you slice off a piece of that belly, that end piece with all the smoke, and you fry it, and eat it, and realize that God has just touched you, in places he probably shouldn't.
You put it in the fridge, wrapped in plastic stuff, and for the next two weeks everything you do revolves around this bacon.
Having a steak one night? A big slice of bacon is your side dish.
Making a salad? Don't be ridiculous. Yeah bacon goes in that.
Going on a date? Bacon in the wallet, in case the whole deal goes south.
Eggs and bacon for breakfast? I don't think so, amateur: bacon for breakfast. Chicken eggs are for humps.
It's hot and humid in NJ and you're going for a swim? Throw some bacon in the pool. Salt water is good for your skin. Smokey salty swimming. Drink the pool water. This will be the only day you don't pee in your pool.
You'll find yourself walking around the house, with 6 pounds of bacon in your hands, buck naked if you're anything like me (and I hope you're not) showing it (the bacon, you sick bastards) to your cats and children and the neighbors, like it's a pile of cocaine and this is, what, 1986? You may plant it under your arm, as you swagger about. You feel like, at this moment, what you have to assume kings and lords felt like in Game of Thrones times. Like you rule the world. Like you are the richest man in all of the land, who can afford armies and castle steel and whores...and you are, and can. You've made bacon, and it's the best bacon the kindgom has seen.
You'll find it's gone after 2 weeks.
And you'll plot to make more.
And then you will go the rest of your life.
Rub it like it's your life's work
Going in the fridge
After the cure
After the smoke
The first taste of feeling like God