The smell of frying bacon wafting through the house in the morning is a surefire way to wake anyone up from a deep sleep. When you learn how to cure bacon yourself, it can be an impressive addition to breakfast. Commercially prepared bacon contains nitrites, or nitrates, during the curing process but you have the option of not including those when you cure bacon yourself. Salt is the main ingredient in curing, paired with sugar to offset the strength of salt, much like brining.
Mix the salt, sugar and spices of your choice (such as pepper and bay leaves) together in a bowl.
Lay the pork belly on a piece of plastic wrap. Rub the salt, sugar and spice mixture all over the pork belly, pressing it firmly into the meat. Save any of the mixture that is left over to use during the curing process.
Wrap the meat tightly in the plastic wrap and place in a container. Cover the container and store in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
Remove the pork belly from the refrigerator. If any water has accumulated, pour it out. Add some more of the salt, sugar and spice rub to the pork belly. Rewrap the meat and return it to the refrigerator.
Repeat Steps 3 and 4 for five days. If you run out of salt, sugar and spice mixture, just make some more.
Remove the pork belly from the refrigerator. Smoke it on the grill or in a smoker. Slice it up, fry it up and enjoy. Make sure to refrigerate any uneaten bacon.