It’s been too long. Far too long. Stuff has been happening. Much stuff. Travel and health issues (not for me, for three very loved members of my family) and crazy times at work. All of that is no great excuse for not writing. I’m going to try to do better.
This is a special post. It’s about something other than bread. If there is something more lovely to put in one’s (non-vegetarian) mouth than bread, it is bacon. And I made bacon, using a new and exciting method which I am about to share with you, for supper. So here is a post about pig strips. Am I forgiven?
PRESENTING: The MOST INCREDIBLE way to cook BACON
STUFF YOU NEED:
Black Pepper, preferably in a grindable form (grindable form, like you were at your junior prom)
Brown Sugah (about a teaspoon)
STUFF YOU NEED TO DO:
NOTE: I promise I’m not forgetting a step – though you will be makin’ bacon in your oven, DO NOT PREHEAT.
Line baking sheet with heavy duty foil. Make sure the foil goes up the edges of the baking sheet, as this will make clean-up infinitely easier.
Open up your package of bacon, but don’t let the weird bacon grease water drip all over your kitchen floor like I did (also do not let it drip on the bathroom floor, if that’s where you happen to be opening your bacon – that would make getting out of the shower even more perilous).
Place strips of bacon on sheet in single layer (a little bit o’ overlap is okay).
Grind black pepper evenly and generously all over that sweet, sweet pig meat (I like to picture Babe snuffing up some black pepper in Farmer Hoggett’s kitchen and sneezing an adorable little piglet sneeze. D’awwww!). Also, I am a terrible person.
Now sprinkle with brown sugar (just a bit). Because the consistency of brown sugar makes it hard to sprinkle easily, I pinched a clumpy bit up, put it on the business end of a fork, and then rubbed it over the tines whilst moving it over the pan. This is ingenious, I know. I wouldn’t be surprised if I was nominated for a Nobel Prize for Ingredient Dispersal Engineering.*
Put the pan on the center rack in cold oven. YES, COLD, UNHEATED OVEN. Turn oven to 400 degrees. This seems weird, but the gradually increasing temp helps the magic happen.
Leave your bacon alone for 17 minutes. You may hear it crackling, or softly calling out your name, but patience is a virtue, friends.
Once the 17 minutes are up, you are free to peek on that hot mess every 2 minutes or so until it reaches desired crispiness.
I like my bacon fairly crispy, so my batch wound up staying in for about 22 minutes total. All ovens are different, so your cooking time may vary. At any rate, if you’re hoping for crunchiness, keep a careful & regular eye on what’s going on once you hit that 17 minute mark as it can change from perfecto to burnt in mere seconds.
The pan will have molten pig oil in it, so be vewy vewy careful when removing the pan from the oven. Transfer bacon from pan immediately to a plate wearing a double layer of paper towels. Your normally plain plate feels fancy and nice wearing its little plate clothes, that is until you put the drippy bacon on it. Then it feels like Carrie on prom night, with you playing the part of that nasty little bitch who was John Travolta’s girlfriend. But rest assured your plate will not have a telekinetic tantrum and kill you.***
YOUR BACON, IT IS SO PERFECT. It is peppery and just a teensy bit sweet. So consume! Consume, and groan with pleasure. Loudly. It makes the neighbors uncomfortable, but also curious.
Post-bacon clean-up is a breeze, because there’s no oven-top grease spatter, and once the grease in the pan has solidified, you can just remove the foil. BAM. Best way to make bacon HANDS DOWN. Also, while it is never advisable to fry bacon in the nude, you can totally bake bacon in the buff if you want. …What? Don’t look at me like that.
Okay, don’t be mad at me, but I have to write this out loud…Bacon is heavenly, right? We agree on that, meat-eating allies? I mean, it tastes of heaven, or so I imagine. I think that if Jesus had a flavor, it would be bacon. Which is weird, because Jesus was Jewish, which means he probably never ate bacon. What I’m really trying to say is that if communion wafers came in delicious bacon flavor (or if they just replaced communion wafers with bacon), there would be a lot more people who stuck with Catholicism. Or a lot more Catholics that would bring eggs and/or French toast up with them when it was time for Communion. The new pope seems cool(er than the other popes I’ve hung out with in the past). Are you there, Francis? IT’S ME, BACON.
*If I win, this is my speech**: “What can I say, I needed to get brown sugar somewhat evenly over a pound of raw pork ribbons and necessity is the mother of invention. GOD BLESS.”
**Do Nobel Prize Winners give speeches? And, if so, is there a time limit like there is at the Oscars? Do they start to play music if you ramble on too long with your list of everybody that helped you find a way to defeat the Graboids**** or cure ring worm?
***Maybe. I don’t know your plate.
****We can only hope. Hope, and pray.