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Cooking Tests: Bacon (Part II)
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BVT
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 12, 2005 3:25 pm    Post subject: I am a little late but better than never Reply with quote

Quote:
On Jul 7, 2005 at 6:46 PM, Brenda (guest) said...
My Grandfather always has bacon with the "rind" on at his house in SW Arkansas. I'm sure that he bought it from the local butcher. It was always an exotic treat.


I believe what you are talking about is hog jawl. You can ask your grandpa about it. If he is an oldtimer than grew up on a farm, he might know that hog jawl is eaten on New Years Day along with black eyed peas with a coin in them for good luck.

Hog jawl can be bought in a Kroger or Publix or larger grocery store from time to time. They usually cut it too thin tho. It should have a thick skin on it that takes a long time to completely chew up. You can cut the skin off and chew it seperately during the day to get the bacon taste. It will help you not be hungry between meals if thick enough and cooked right.
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2005 10:10 pm    Post subject: Bacon drippings Reply with quote

If you ever build a wood fire, one of the best ways to do it
is fill up an empty cardboard egg carton with bacon drippings.
Put it under the wood and light it! Just as good as lighter fluid.
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chlychef



Joined: 07 Nov 2005
Posts: 1
Location: Chandler, AZ

PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2005 6:32 pm    Post subject: Cooking Bacon Reply with quote

Cooking bacon in the oven is definitely the best way to go. However, the way I have always done it is at 350 degrees for about 12-14 minutes. You can adjust the time for your preferred doneness. Here at the restaurant this is done in a convection oven so it runs about 50 degrees hotter than the conventional oven. And we use parchment paper as a liner instead of the foil. I believe that cuts down the heat slightly from not being directly on a metal type surface. It comes out perfect every time.
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jon
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2005 4:03 pm    Post subject: makin bacon Reply with quote

Cooking meat with high levels of preservatives by direct heat source results in nitrosamines which are known to be cancerous.

That is why microwaving above the floor plane of a microwave oven is preferred. Exciting water molecules is actually a safer way to cook these meats that are known to be high in preservatives. If you can get rid of the fat - all the better.
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Richard
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 10:34 pm    Post subject: My opinions on bacon cooking from much experience Reply with quote

I love bacon. I buy it in 3 lb packs from a discount wholesale store. I usually eat a bit after cooking and refridgerate the rest to eat as a snack out of ziplock bags like chips. I have tried almost all of the methods listed above. The best method I have found so far is based on the microwave (although grilling arguably makes for a better taste and has its own advantages listed at the end of this).

A favorite saying of mine: "Everything tastes better with bacon, even bacon."

Take a pyrex dish or bowl. I prefer the large wide mixing bowls since you can fit more slices in per batch and only have to clean the bowl once at the end of all of your cooking. The wide opening also gives you the advantage of fitting whole slices of bacon if your microwave is large enough. Place a bamboo rack on top of the bowl. I have also used wooden spoons and bamboo skewers before, but they can be a pain to use since they roll if you're not careful while placing the bacon. Place two stacked paper towels on top of the bacon to keep it from splattering in your microwave. Cook the bacon in your microwave for about 4-5 minutes at 70% power. Experiment with the power settings and time to find what works best for you. I use a lower power to more evenly cook the bacon. Most of the fat will drip into the bowl. Clean up is remarkably easy. Dump the fat into some empty soup cans and let them cool before you throw them away. Use some dish soap to get the residue from the bowl. I usually handwash the bamboo rack as well, but you could place the bowl and rack in a dishwasher, too, for a more thorough clean.

Pros:

+ Your bacon will be less greasy.
+ Easy to clean and makes no mess.
+ Using the microwave timer, you can note exact times required for different levels of cooking: limp bacon for sandwiches, crisp bacon for a breakfast side. This makes future cooking a breeze.

Cons:

- The bacon can tend to curl downward at the ends. You can correct for this by using a bamboo rack, or by better placement of the wooden spoons or bamboo skewers.



Disadvantages of other methods:

Skillet:

- Constant supervision
- Splatter
- Greasier

Oven:

- Harder to clean
- Greasier
- Takes a long time

Broiler:

- Same as oven, except for the tendency for burning as Michael notes in the article

George Foreman grill:

- Seems to take a while and you can't fit that many slices at once.
- Also, I only have the small version and have to cut the bacon in half.

Special microwave dishes for bacon:

- They tend to melt after the first batch or two! I've tried the one above and several others.
- Can only cook 4-5 slices at a time, usually.
- The vertical ones leave your bacon looking funny with a "V" shape. Matter of taste(pun not intended), I guess.

Grilling:

+ The bacon tastes good.
+ Can cook ALL of your bacon at once if your grill is large enough
- Takes a while, but the results can be worth it.
- Messy to clean. You DO clean your grill, don't you?
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johncooks
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2005 1:01 am    Post subject: Cooking Bacon Reply with quote

I have found that cooking bacon in the oven utilizing a cooling rack/grid over a half sheet pan gives the best results with little clean up around the kitchen. The bacon comes out of the oven crisp and drip free and is bacon that you can use right away and do not have to drip dry it in paper towels. You do have to clean two pieces of equipment (rack and sheet pan) but it is worth it.
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suzy
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2005 2:40 pm    Post subject: bacon reply Reply with quote

i really love the makin bacon tool. i myself have owned one for about to years and it is now the only way i cook my bacon. it is light and crisp with so much flavor. i woulh HIGHLY recomend purchesing a makin bacon for your self here is the link:

http://www.makinbacon.com/purchase.htm
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maureen
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2005 11:06 pm    Post subject: bakin bacon is best Reply with quote

I agree with chlychef. Bake the bacon in the oven at 350F for 15 min (or to desired doneness). There is no messy splatter (like pan frying), no checking or watching the bacon, and you can bake more slices in an oven than in a microwave or pan. During the 15 min. of carefree baking you can prepare the rest of the meal. As chlychef said, it comes out perfect every time.
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sandy
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2005 1:32 am    Post subject: bacon Reply with quote

I've baked my bacon for years - while we do like pan-fried bacon, the baked bacon has a subtly different taste that we enjoy; also, we can devote our time, attention, and stovetop to other dishes while the bacon is cooking. Here's how we do it:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Lay bacon directly on the foil, not touching. Turn bacon over at about 10-12 minutes; very thin bacon may be done now, thicker bacon will take as long as 12-16 minutes total. Remove to a paper-towel-lined plate. You can eat it right away, or put it aside for a bit and, covering it with a paper towel, reheat it for 30 seconds in the microwave (for those of you who have trouble getting the timing right with multiple dishes).
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 20, 2005 1:57 am    Post subject: Aussie bacon Reply with quote

Bacon available in Australia is the whole strip - that is the round shaped fleshy bit (known as Canadian bacon), with a streaky end (known simply as bacon in the USA). It's actually shaped a bit like a number 6 on its side.

Personally, I usually trim most of the fat off the streaky end and keep just the pink bits. Oh, and pan frying it is usually best (although I haven't tried baking it for 3 hours!)

Regards,

Aussie in America
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2006 11:45 pm    Post subject: I love American Bacon Reply with quote

I guess it depends on what you grow up with. Me, although not American, grew up with American style bacon (streaky bacon) and even though I live in Australia now, I cannot get used to the taste of Aussie bacon. It just isn't bacon. It's ham. Australians bash American bacon just because theirs have more meat, but Aussie bacon really lacks the smoky flavor. It's just salty ham. I'm still trying to find the American kind here...
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 5:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

UK is the best place for buying bacon I reckon. You can get streaky middle or back; with or without rind; smoked or unsmoked.

The general American trend to cook the bacon till completely crisp is not the common way of cooking it over here though. We generally cook it till the fat has gone crispy but the meat is still chewy.

I think grilled bacon tastes far and away the best between grilled baked and fried. Never tried the microwave method though. will have to give it a go.

The first article mentioned broiling. What is that?
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Michael Chu



Joined: 10 May 2005
Posts: 1622
Location: Austin, TX (USA)

PostPosted: Wed Mar 01, 2006 6:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anonymous wrote:
The first article mentioned broiling. What is that?

Broiling, in this context, means to cook food directly under a heat source. In American ovens, an additional heating element is often placed at the top of the oven (either a gas jet or electrical heating element) under which you place food. The heat is very intense and localized. In older ovens, the broiling element was the same as the oven heating element (below the cooking chamber) and a special broiler drawer is used to broil food.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 08, 2006 3:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am an Aussie currently in London and i loathe the bacon over here - the texture and taste is all wrong!!!!!

I saw some Aussie style bacon somewhere once but I was going to be out for the rest of the day so didn't buy any & now I can't remember where I saw it!

As a result, i have started grilling pancetta instead - its awesome!
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Guest from Silicon Valley
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 13, 2006 8:05 pm    Post subject: Bacon cooking Reply with quote

I found that a combination of cooking methods works pretty well for bacon. I will microwave bacon to quickly remove water and fat. Then I crisp up the bacon in the oven or in a frying pan.
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