This delicious dish is a culinary commitment to make, but well worth it. It’s better than bacon. While you can’t enjoy this delicious camelized pork often—you’d have a heart attack—it’s quite a fabulous treat!
Day 1 – the cure
- 1 lb pork belly with skin – cut into two or three pieces.
- 1 cup course salt
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1 tbsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 2 tbsp whole pepper corns
- 1 tbsp whole cloves
Grind the pepper corns and cloves or place them in a zip top bag and crush them with a mallet. Mix it with the rest of the spices into a powder.
Pat the pork belly dry and then roll each piece in the spices. Place the pork into a small sealable container and pack the rest of the spices around it.
Refrigerate over night.
Day Two – the brine
- 6 cups of water
- 1 1/2 cups of salt
- 3/4 cup of sugar
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 pints of water
Heat the first six cups of water with the bay leaves and the salt and sugar until the powders are dissolved. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl. Add the other two cups of water to cool. Stir.
Pour the mixture into the container with the meat and spices. You may not need it all.
Refrigerate over night.
Day Three – the braise
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 yellow onion
- 6-8 cloves of garlic
- 3-4 whole cloves
- 1 tsp finely chopped italian parsley
- 1 stalk of chopped celery
- 1 cup home made soup stock –doesn’t matter what kind as long as it’s home made. (No fish stocks)
- 1 cup red wine
- 1/8 cup soy sauce
- 1 tsp fresh rosemary
Preheat oven to 350.
Remove the meat from the brine. You can throw out the brine. Pat the meat dry with paper towels. This is important.
Place a heavy dutch oven over the fire and get it hot. Add the oil. Sear all sides of the meat on high heat. Pour in the wine and stand back. It will deglaze the pan and fizz all over the place. I recommend getting the soup stock in there as quickly as possible.
Add the rest of the ingredients. Cover and bake at 350 for 90 minutes. Reduce heat to 180 and cook for two hours.
Meat will be dark and caramelized on the outside and oh-so tender on the inside.
Posted in Bacon, dinner, Ingredients, Recipes
Tagged Bacon, braised pork belly, braising, cooking, dinner, food, pork, pork belly, Recipes, slow cooking
When I think of trout, I think of fishing trips at Lake Bridgeport with my dad and grandpa. There’s actually a lot you can do with trout. It’s a tasty and versatile fish which I think is highly under-rated. This dish is a delight treat! Steve, my guinea pig, licked his dish clean.
- 2 cleaned and butterflied trout
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
- 1 stalk celery
- 4 medium crimini or white mushrooms
- 2 strips thick-cut bacon
- 2 tbsp corn meal
- 1 lemon
- 2 tbsp fresh oregano
- 1 tbsp fresh rosemary
Pre-heat the oven to 400℉.
In a skillet, sweat the onion and celery with a little salt and olive oil. Add-in bacon, chopped mushrooms, and finely chopped rosemary and oregano. Sauteé the mixture. Remove from skillet by spooning into a bowl. Salt and pepper to taste.
Sprinkle corn meal on a plate and dredge the trout, skin-side, through the corn meal.
Add whatever corn meal is left into the sauteéd mixture and stir it up.
Open the trout and lay it in your skillet (heat off). Squeeze the lemon evenly over both sides of the meat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Scoop the veggie/bacon mixture onto one side of the trout. Fold the other side over it to close it up.
Stick the skillet into the oven and bake at 400℉ for about 15 minutes.
Prep time: 15-20 min
Cook time: 15 min
Posted in Bacon, Recipes, Seafood
Tagged Bacon, cooking, dinner, fish, food, Recipes, Seafood, summer cooking, summer recipes, trout
How do you plan to spend your Saturday?
- Recover from a hangover
- Catch up on chores
- Hitting refresh on your twitter page
- None of the above
- Go to Bacon Camp!
If you answered anything but E, I’m seriously disappointed with you!
Who? You! and me and everyone else we know
What? The Bacon Event of the Decade
When? Sat Mar 21, 1-4pm
Where? 500 3rd St, Ste 510, San Francisco
In the spirit of barcamp, we are organizing the first bay area BaconCamp. Born from the desire to share in all things bacon, we bring you this community-driven baco-celebraion, and encourage your participation!
Over 25 baco-tastic dishes are scheduled to be presented. Check out what’s planned: http://baconcamp.pbwiki.com/Bringing-a-Dish.
Do you have a bacony bit of culinary accomplishment which you think the public must taste? BaconCamp is still accepting entries and the prize is one of these coveted trophies which, if won, ensure you undisputed baco-bragging rights. Just go to the wiki and enter your dish!
BaconCamp is free, but participants are encouraged to purchase tickets http://baconcampsf.eventbrite.com/ to raise funds for the American Heart Association.
Don’t cook, but love bacon? Techniques, poems, interpretive dance and any other baco-inspired expression is welcome! There will be Bacon Slam Poetry featuring your best baco-tweets, “One Hour in Bacon” and even Bacon Math Art.
Participate! Volunteers are needed to help run the event from 11am – 5pm. Sign up at http://baconcamp.org/SFBayArea_notes_03_21 with your name, email and available timeframe.
This is the event that even vegetarians can’t afford to miss!
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that I’m a judge!
With Love and Pork Fat!
Bacon Fetishist and Mother of Bacon Man
Feel free to re-post, cross-post and circulate as you will!
We’re SO excited about Bacon Camp, San Francisco, on Mar 21. I get to be a judge. If you haven’t heard about this event, you’re in for an excitingly culinary treat. It’s produced by my dear friend Karen. Tickets are available here. So come out for the bacon and meet me and a host of other baco-celebs.
I’m also a little tickled that Steve’s and my creation, Bacon Man has a cameo in the Bacon Meme Video, a trailer for Bacon Camp!
This is a breakfast skillet favorite in my house. When my nephew visits, he always asks me to make them.
- 3-4 strips of bacon
- 1/2 yellow or red onion
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 2 med white rose potatoes
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 1 cup apple juice
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika, preferably smoked paprika
Using a mandolin, cut potatoes into small strips. If you don’t have a mandolin, a food processor will work too.
Finely chop your onion and cut the bell pepper into 1/4″ pieces.
Slice the strips of bacon into 1″ pieces.
Heat your skillet and then drop in the bacon pieces. Let them cook for a couple of minutes and then add in the onions, garlic and bell peppers. Sauteé for a minute or two and then add in the potatoes. Add at least a tablespoon of salt. Sauteé for another minute or two, stirring frequently.
Add fresh ground pepper, basil and paprika. Then pour in the apple juice and cover.
Simmer over medium heat until the liquid is absorbed.
Uncover and saute´, stirring frequently, until the edges of the potatoes are slightly crispy.
Serve with a dollop of fresh salsa.
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 15 min
Posted in Bacon, breakfast, Recipes
Tagged Bacon, breakfast, cooking, cooking bacon, food, hash browns, meat, potatoes, Recipes
The next time you’re going to cook bacon, rather than jumping around the kitchen to avoid hot grease spattering out of the frying pan, why not just bake it? You’ll have less mess and the pieces will come out perfectly flat rather than wrinkly.
Just take out a baking sheet and lay bacon across it. I’d recommend putting a piece of parchment down first to soak up the grease. You can place the pieces as close together as you’d like without touching. Since they don’t expand like cookies, you can fit plenty on there. Bake it in a preheated 450º oven for about 15-20min. Keep an eye on it because cooking times depend on the quality of your bacon and how well calibrated your oven is. (I’m told this only takes about ten minutes in a convection oven.)
When you’re all done, just take them out of the oven and using tongs, immediately cool them (+/-5min) on a cooling or a plate. Be sure you don’t let them cook on the baking sheet or the grease will stick to them.
Just a little something to make you hungry…
Posted in Bacon, Humor
I recently dined at Zuppa, 2007 winner of the San Francisco Boss of the Sauce competition where I was introduced to the best thing since bacon: speck. I was so excited after dinner that I got on the phone and called all my bacon fanatic friends to tell them I’d met bacon’s match.
Also called Speck dell’Alto Adige, it is a delightful thinly sliced Italian meat that has characteristics of both bacon and prosciutto. The wikipedia entry on speck says that this meat has been around since the fourteenth century. It’s both salt-cured and wood smoked and comes from the hind-leg of the pig.
We tried it by itself as an appetizer and for an entrée I had roasted quail wrapped in speck. My toes curled! I’d never even heard of this fabulous treat, but it was definitely love at first bite.
Since then, I’ve been on the look-out for a pound of speck. I hear that they sell it at Lucca. I’ll keep you updated once I get my hands on some. I’ll certainly blog my kitchen experiments with it!
Posted in Bacon, Ingredients
Tagged Bacon, cooking, food, Ingredients, italian, italian food, italian meats, meat, speck, Speck dell'Alto Adige