What is salt pork?
Like bacon, salt pork is cut from pigs belly. However, unlike bacon, salt pork is never smoked and is cured for longer, leading to a much saltier final product. It also tends to be fattier. As its name implies, it is SUPER salty- you wouldn’t really ever just cook up a piece and eat it unless you hate yourself. But it makes a great flavoring ingredient in many dishes, such as my mom’s pinto beans or in a variety of soup recipes. Typically it’s utilized like you would a bay leaf- you leave it in a dish as it simmers and then remove it when its done.
Can I Substitute Bacon for Salt Pork?
It depends on the dish. If a recipe calls for salt pork and you use bacon, your finished dish will have a smokey flavor that it otherwise wouldn’t have. Sometimes this can be a happy accident! But other times it doesn’t make sense. Think carefully about the flavor profiles in your dish before you substitute in bacon.
Where can I get salt pork?