Mastering Man Food: How to Cook Bacon Properly

“I had rather be shut up in a very modest cottage with my books, my family and a few old friends, dining on simple bacon, and letting the world roll on as it liked, than to occupy the most splendid post, which any human power can give.”

-Thomas Jefferson

Ahhhh bacon, that most wonderful of man foods. There is just something about bacon that men love. Perhaps it is the sizzle of the bacon in the pan, or that hunger-pang inducing aroma that fills the house when the bacon hits the heat. Whatever it is, one thing is for certain: most men love bacon. Yet, for all our passion for bacon, many of us have never learned how to properly cook this most manly of meats. Cooking a good strip of bacon is just as essential a man skill as lighting a good campfire or being able to jump start an automobile, so let’s head to the kitchen and get those culinary skills of yours up to par. Lodge Seasoned Cast Ir... Best Price: $34.99 Buy New $19.90 (as of 08:55 EST - Details)

“Bacon,” a sourdough friend translated, when asked what he meant by saying he’d gorged himself with vast amounts of tiger. “That’s because it’s striped. Sounds nobler when called tiger.”

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Fortunately for those of us who don’t have a great deal of experience in the kitchen, bacon preparation is flexible. You can successfully cook bacon several different ways, all resulting in a wonderfully crisp, flavorful treat. In the Norpro 8.75-Inch Cast ... Best Price: $16.27 Buy New $16.39 (as of 09:05 EST - Details) following sections, you’ll be introduced to several different ways to prepare bacon, including classic styles and unusual twists.

The Classic Pan Fry

This is bacon the way your grandfather cooked it: on the stove and in its own grease. You will want to use a large flat frying pan, laying out the bacon strips in the pan so that they are not overlapping but generally fill the pan. Cooking only one or two slices at a time can cause problems because there will not be enough grease rendered from so few slices to keep the bacon from burning. Overlapping bacon will leave the overlaying pieces uncooked, resulting in unevenly cooked bacon.

StarPack Basics Silico... Best Price: null Buy New $9.71 (as of 09:05 EST - Details) The number one fatal error that many people make when cooking bacon is throwing cold bacon onto a hot pan over high heat. Set your bacon out for several minutes before you cook it, allowing the fat to loosen up a bit and return to a more natural state. When you are ready to cook, place the bacon in a room temperature pan and then place it over medium heat. This allows the bacon to gradually take on the heat and cook more evenly and avoids the scorching that so often results from dropping the bacon onto a high heat pan. Once the bacon begins to sizzle, you’re in business.

Another common error is in the flipping. There is no need to continually flip your bacon while it cooks. Allow it to cook evenly by flipping it only once, just as you would a good steak. Over medium heat, you can expect this flip to come around the ten minute mark, but all appliances are different so be sure to keep an eye on it. Once your bacon has reached a level of crispiness that is to your liking, offload it onto paper towels to soak up some of the Kikkoman Panko Bread C... Check Amazon for Pricing. remaining grease and partner it up on the plate with fried eggs and flapjacks.

The Rush Job

Of course, sometimes you don’t have twenty minutes to burn (no pun intended) cooking bacon. When you need to get out the door quick, the microwave offers a speedier option. There are many different styles of microwaveable bacon racks available on the market, most of which use a Foreman Grill style fat runoff system to drain away the excess grease while cooking. For good microwave bacon, however, this is not a requirement. Instead, place three layers of paper towels on a microwave safe plate and then lay out your bacon strips side by side. Cover the arrangement with another paper towel, and you’re ready to cook. As a general rule, one minute per slice is a safe cooking time, so four slices would be cooked for four minutes. However, microwave wattages differ so it is best to keep a close eye on your bacon the first time you try cooking this way. As long as your microwave has a rotating tray, you can spend the cooking time anticipating the wonderfully greasy goodness you are about to partake in. If your microwave lacks the rotating tray, however, you will need to give the plate a spin at least one time midway through the process. Once the microwave bell goes off signaling the start of the bacon bonanza, remove your bacon and uncover, allowing it to cool slightly before partaking.

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