Four gallons of water; two pounds of rock-salt, and a little more of common salt; two ounces of saltpetre; one quart of molasses. Mix, but do not boil. Put the hams in a barrel and pour this over them, and keep them covered with it for six weeks. If more brine is needed, make it in the same proportions.
Four gallons of water; one and a half pounds of sugar; one ounce of saltpetre.; one ounce of saleratus. Add salt; and if it is for use only a month or two, use six pounds of salt; if for all the year, use nine pounds. In hot weather, rub the meat with salt before putting it in, and let it lie for three hours, to extract the blood. When tongues and hung beef are taken out, wash the pieces, and, when smoked, put them in paper bags, and hang in a dry place.
One gallon of cold water; one quart of rock-salt; and two of blown salt; one heaping table-spoonful of saltpetre, (or half as much of saleratus, with half a table-spoonful of saltpetre;) six heaping table-spoonfuls of brown sugar. Mix, but not boil. Keep it as long as salt remains undissolved at bottom. When scum rises, add more salt, sugar, saltpetre, and soda.
Allow a peck of salt for sixty pounds. Cover the bottom of the barrel with salt an inch deep. Put down one layer of pork, and cover that with salt half an inch thick. Continue thus till the barrel is full. Then pour in as much strong brine as the barrel will receive. Keep coarse salt between all pieces, so that the brine can circulate. When a white scum or bloody-looking matter rises on the top, scald the brine and add more salt. Leave out bloody and lean pieces for sausages. Pack as tight as possible, the rind next the barrel; and let it be always kept under the brine. Some use a stone for this purpose. In salting down a new supply, take the old brine, boil it down and remove all the scum, and then use it to pour over the pork. The pork may be used in six weeks after salting.
Empty the cases, taking care not to tear them. Wash them thoroughly, and cut into lengths of two yards each. Then take a candle-rod, and fastening one end of a case to the top of it, turn the case inside outward. When all are turned, wash very thoroughly, and scrape them with a scraper made for the purpose, keeping them in warm water till ready to scrape. Throw them into salt and water to soak till used. It is a very difficult job to scrape them clean without tearing them. When finished, they look transparent and very thin.
Take one third fat and two thirds lean pork, and chop it; and then to every twelve pounds of meat add twelve large even spoonfuls of pounded salt, nine of sifted sage, and six of sifted black pepper. Some like a little summer-savory. Keep it in a cool and dry place.
To twenty-five pounds of chopped meat, which should be one third fat and two thirds lean, put twenty spoonfuls of sage, twenty-five of salt, ten of pepper, and four of summer-savory.
Take equal portions of veal, pork, and ham; chop them fine; season with sweet herbs and pepper; put them in cases; boil them till tender, and then dry them.
Make a small building of boards, nailing strips over the cracks to confine the smoke. Have within cross-sticks, on which to hang the hams. Have only one opening at top, at the end farthest from the fire. Set it up so high that a small stove can be set under or very near it, with the smoke-pipe entering the floor at the opposite end from the slide. These directions are for a wooden house, and it is better thus than to have a fire within a brick house, because too much warmth lessens the flavor and tenderness of the hams. Change the position of the hams once or twice, that all may be treated alike. When this can not be done, use an inverted barrel or hogshead, with a hole for the smoke to escape, and resting on stones; and keep a small, smouldering fire. Cobs are best, as giving a better flavor; and brands or chips of walnut wood are next best. Keeping a small fire a longer time is better than quicker smoking, as too much heat gives the hams a strong taste, and they are less sweet. The house and barrel are shown in Fig. 5, on preceding page.