Canadian bacon is one of those versatile dishes that pretty much works for any occasion. Whether served warm or cold, it’s marvelous at a summer barbecue as well as on a Christmas smorgasbord, on a charcuterie platter or in a simple salad or sandwich.
Some store bought Canadian bacon is loaded with nitrates and food colorings and although this homemade version has to be planned in advance (for a 36 hour brining time), it is additive free, surprisingly easy to make and well worth the wait. This recipe was made for smoking but it can also be prepared in an oven (see below).

pepper & herb crusted canadian bacon
ingredients for brining
3 lb pork tenderloin
1 cup pink himalayan sea salt
1 cup coconut palm sugar
1 cup maple syrup
2 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon pink peppercorns
3 rosemary sprigs
3 thyme sprigs
3 bay leaves
1 small lemon
ice water
directions for brining

Pour a few cups of ice water into a large pot and add the pork.

Top with remaining ingredients, ending with enough ice water to cover by a couple of inches.

Stir gently until salt and palm sugar has melted and push all ingredients under water.

Cover and refrigerate for 36 hours.

Rinse and pat dry before preparing to cook.

ingredients pepper & herb coating
½ cup crushed pink peppercorns
4 tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary
2 tablespoons fresh lavender
2 tablespoons garlic pepper
directions pepper & herb coating

Mix all ingredients and cover all sides of the pork.

ingredients smoking
2 cups woodchips
charcoal
directions smoking

Soak woodchips in water for 1 hour.

Burn charcoal until grey before adding woodchips.

Using a place setter and grill, smoke pork fat side up indirectly at 225F for 1.5 hours or until internal temperature reaches 130F*. Without access to a smoker this can be done in an oven.

*FDA recommends 145F


Serving Board by J.K. Adams from Crate & Barrell.
Handcrafted Fiess Tea Bowls by Ben Fiess used for salt, sugar and syrup from LEIF.
Granite Mortar & Pestle from IKEA
Handmade blue and white matte ceramic serving bowl used for wood chips from Vitreous Wares, Etsy.
Stoneware + Porcelain Bowls, Small and Large, by Sue Paraskeva from Herriott Grace.
Smoker/Grill from Big Green Egg.


Filmed by Philip Blankenship.