CHARCUTEPALOOZA. Say it loud, and say it proud. I have been converted, or at least I am in the conversion process as I don't have my supplies yet. I'm pretty sure the pork belly will not be an issue as they always have a good supply at the Asian supermarket. The cure might be an issue if I have to mail order it. I also know for sure that the process, chez nous, will not be able to start till the beginning of February.
That's ok, since the last time I made bacon was in Malawi and it was HOT. Food was hard to come by and when the Embassy was able to get pork, pork meant pigs. We and another family shared one. In addition to dealing with a fresh porker sliced down the middle, there was the issue of the head. Which family's servants would get the head. We dithered a bit and then I came out as the winner. I had convinced them that as we were the ones going to pick up the whole pig and deliver it to them, we'd get the head. Next pig, if god willing there were more pigs which you never knew, they could pick the beauty and thus let their servants have the head. I never knew what was done with the head but I know meat like that was extremely hard to come by and was greatly appreciated. I had more than enough on my hands with that pig in an un-airconditioned kitchen.
This bacon will not see me sitting on the floor, hot and sweaty with an aching back, trying to wrestle a carcass into submission, and sharpening, resharpening my best knives and Thai cleaver. Sometimes, a simple trip to the supermarket is so much better. It may not be locally sourced pork but it's also not an animal I have to cut up. I respect the animal that feeds me but today I'm not the 30something who tackled the non-existent butcher's job.
Converted? oh yes, I am. Now I just have to work on the curing. Why don't you try it out and enjoy some of the process.