Kasseler Rippchen (Loin-Ham) for Easter Dinner


The wife likes German style hams better than brown sugar hams, so I decided to do a Kasseler Rippchen style loin-ham for Easter Dinner.

This is similar to Back Bacon (A.K.A. Canadian Bacon), but with flavors typical of German style hams.

Now, originally Kasseler was smoked first, then ripened in brine, but nowadays, for safety reasons, most people brine first using a nitrite cure, then smoke.

Brine Recipe

For 1 Gallon of brine:

2 TBS Juniper Berries (crushed)
4 tsp Peppercorns

Gently simmer the Juniper berries & peppercorns in 2 - 3 cups of water for 5 - 10 minutes, then allow to steep & cool.

After the mixture cools, add enough water to equal 1 Gallon, then stir in (until dissolved):
3/4 cup Pickling Salt
1/3 cup Sugar
4 tsp Cure #1

Inject the loin/ham with brine equaling 30% of it's weight
(example: if the loin/ham weighs 10 lbs, inject 3 lbs brine).
Cover with the remaining brine, cover and refrigerate for 3 - 5 days.

Sunday afternoon we put the loin on the MAK, turned it on to smoke mode for about 30 minutes, then bumped it up to 225°.

My understanding is that Kasselers are typically lightly smoked with beach wood.
Since I don't have beach pellets, we used the lightest flavor pellets I had: Maple.

When it reached an I.T. of 165°, we pulled it off and let it rest for a good 30 minutes or so. No glaze!

This turned out really good. I love the hint of juniper berry this has.

The wife was happy. Happy wife = happy life! ;)


New member
Wow that looks good. Juicy. How much did your loin weigh & how long did you end up refrigerating with the brine.
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