I have a question about Ruhlman’s home cured bacon recipe. I do not have a smoker and I know the smoking step is optional but I was thinking that if I used Maldon Smoked Sea Salt Flakes instead of the suggested Morton or Diamond Crystal it would give the bacon a nice smoky flavour. Has anyone tried this or has an opinion?
You could use the smoked salt, but it would not impart that much smoked flavor and would be quite expensive compared to normal kosher salt. Since most wet-cured bacon available at the grocery store is flavored with liquid smoke, an easy alternative would be to rub the belly with liquid smoke prior to roasting as described at The Splendid Table.
As a side note, Ruhlman's recipe yields bacon that has a significant herbal flavor. If you were looking for something closer to standard bacon, try a simpler recipe like the one from The Splendid Table or this one from Salt and Smoke Food