"This course is about instilling confidence and it did that - it's only a matter of time before I'll be eating home-cured bacon" Gregor Shepherd, chief sub editor, Olive magazine, June 2011
Join the River Cottage team for an insight into the artisan craft of curing and smoking meat. Whether you rear your own animals or are just keen to turn a slab of good local belly pork into your own bacon, you will learn all the basic techniques of curing and smoking - along with the basic butchery skills for preparing the meats in question. Keep me informed >
The day will begin with traditional dry curing: The team will take the middle of an organic pig and show you how to transform it into traditional cuts of pancetta-style streaky and back bacon. They will go on to demonstrate the necessary preparation and salting of a whole a leg of pork, for a prosciutto-style, air-dried ham.
Also covered will be brine curing; including how to prepare a whole gammon for boiling and baking as a glazed ham. And as an alternative to pork, we will explain how to brine cure a brisket or foreflank of beef to make classic salt beef.
During the day, you will taste a variety of our home-cured meats. Your two course buffet lunch - prepared by the River Cottage kitchen team - will feature ingredients such as salt beef or a baked River Cottage ham, as well as a selection of other cured meats.
The afternoon will be focused on hot and cold smoking, including ideas for how to build your own hot and cold smokers at home. The team will prepare various cuts of meat to smoke, including pastrami and liver sausage.
This course will give you the skills and confidence to make your own versions of some delicious cured meats. You will be also given free access to our Online Pig and Pork course, containing all the skills needed to cure and smoke your meat at home. With patience and a little practice, there is no reason why your own home-made products cannot rival the best in the world!
This event is demonstration based. Practical participation is not required, although volunteers are encouraged to take part in the demonstrations during the day.
Seasonality: All year
Location: This course is run from River Cottage HQ on the Dorset/Devon border.
Wine/drink: We are a licensed venue. We have a wide selection of the finest organic wines.
Accomodation: If you need local accommodation please click here.
Age: This course is suitable for those over 12yrs of age: under 16s must be accompanied by an adult. We keep to these guidelines for the safety, comfort and enjoyment of all our guests.
Time: 10.00am - 5.00pm.
Keep me informed
If you are interested in joining us at River Cottage for a course or event, please let us know. We will send you new dates when they become available, special offers on last minute tickets and let you know about the new courses we are developing. Just hit the button below and let us know what you're interested in.
sad, i know, but i've just returned from the meat curing and smoking course and already i'm on the internet. the day was a treat, thanks to denplan and i was interested to see what it cost. initially i was just happy to have a day away from the surgery, but ended up totally engaged and enthralled by the presentation. steve and ray were brilliant and i couldnt believe how easy the recipes were. i also returned with enough meat to cater for a rugby festival bbq.i had a wonderful day and felt it was definitely worth the money. thanks again, steve and ray
"Having attended the meat curing and smoking course last Friday as detailed below, I would like to thank all concerned for a fantastic day, I really enjoyed it. It was both informative and very well presented, with some fantastic food.
Many thanks again to all involved in making the day a memorable one" - Rob fryer
I thought Steve and Gill brought a great balance to the course. I learnt a lot and it was very educational, but at the same time it was light-hearted and very enjoyable. Both the canteen and the meal on Sunday were fantastic! Great recipes but it would be nice to have some images with them. It's a shame I live quite far away, otherwise I'll be tempted down next month too, but I hope to come again this year. - Luke Wijsveld
I attended this course on 8th May and found it to be an excellent day and very informative. Steve was a good presenter and took the group methodically through the whole process of butchering your pig, curing it with various different cures and ultimately smoking it.
There is a lot of information to take in and there are handouts to take away which certainly help to infill where your memory fails. Steve and Gill were very professional and I would fully trust what they have told me. When I compare their approach to some others who write books on the subject I find that there are many variations. So much so I wonder if some of these writers actually know what they are talking about. This is a well worth while course to do if you want to develop these skills.