We grew up frying bacon in the skillet. But is there a better way to cook your bacon? Yes, there is! In your oven. A cookie sheet or pan will do a wonderful job of cooking your bacon. We set our oven to 175C or 350F, even up to 400F. It takes about 15 to 20 minutes to cook bacon this way, but you can do a pan full at a time.
We save the bacon grease, since it is delicious. We use if for fried rice, making gravy, all sorts of things. We've even put in our ground beef for a really juicy hamburger! Back to the oven. When your bacon is finished, or even just before it is finished, pull it out. Let it cool down, damp off the excess grease with a paper towel. You have precooked bacon. Next time you need some for breakfast or to chop up and add to your rice, it is already done! How easy is that? So convenient and you can have it ready in a snap.
If you remove it from the oven before it is done, then you can finish it on the stove top when you need it. If you wait until it is finished, then you simply have to warm it up to eat it. You can do that on the stove top or in a microwave. It will be warm in seconds!
One trick we use to get our bacon to look like those perfectly flat pieces the fine restaurants serve is called "Jaccarding". Sounds difficult, but it isn't. You just poke your bacon with a fork! Just work from one end of the bacon to the other, poking it every few millimeters or maybe a quarter inch. Between fork poking and the oven, your bacon will be just a pretty as that served in the nicest restaurant in Manila or Hong Kong!
Love, Peace, & Bacon Grease!
Homemade bacon, there is nothing quite like it! Fantastic flavors and it keeps longer than regular pork belly. It is a favorite in my family and a gift our friends love to receive.
We started making bacon at home and found it was very easy to do. The only hard part was figuring out how much of each ingredient should be used. Too much salt was not a problem, that was easy to fix, even after the bacon has cured, simply by soaking in fresh water for an hour or two.
The challenge was sodium nitrite. And we did not want any sodium nitrate in our bacon. All the authorities say do not do that, it is bad for you. It is even illegal in the USA to make bacon with sodium nitrate in it. Only sodium nitrite - notice the difference? Sodium Nitr-I-te is okay, Sodium Nitr-A-te is not. At least in bacon. Both are found in nature. They occur in many edible plants. But high heat and sodium nitrate is a no-no!
When we went to find curing salts, we ran into two serious problems. The first was it was very hard to find. The second was most of it was repackaged and unlabelled. We could not tell what we were buying. It might be what we were looking for or it might have sodium nitrate in it, which we did not want and would be a health hazard.
So we decided to make our own. With known ingredients so that it was safe to use. And we worked on it to make it simple. Seriously simple. We don't expect you to be a food scientist. Just a cook. If you know how to level a measuring cup and measuring spoons, you can make great bacon at home!
In upcoming posts, we will share recipes and flavors. We will talk about techniques to enhance your bacon. And about food safety. We will talk about problems we have had making bacon at home and how we solved them. And we will share our love for good food. So please visit us and share your ideas and experience.
Love, Peace, & Bacon Grease!