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Larry Greenly

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A new twist on bacon

by Larry Greenly » Sat Aug 26, 2006 2:19 am

I had breakfast at my cousin's place recently and chowed down on peppered bacon that was twisted not unlike rawhide chews for dogs.

It was nice and crisp. The cousin said she saw the method from Emeril. You twist bacon and bake it at 400F until it's crisp. A new one on me. Are you aware of this method? What's your way of cooking bacon?
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Bob Ross

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Bob Ross » Sat Aug 26, 2006 4:02 am

I like Pepin's wife's technique -- a couple of layers of paper towel, a layer of bacon strips, a layer of paper towel. Cook on high in the microwave for two, three or four minutes, depending on the degree of doneness you prefer.

Perfection.

Regards, Bob
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ChefCarey

Re: A new twist on bacon

by ChefCarey » Sat Aug 26, 2006 9:25 am

Larry Greenly wrote:I had breakfast at my cousin's place recently and chowed down on peppered bacon that was twisted not unlike rawhide chews for dogs.

It was nice and crisp. The cousin said she saw the method from Emeril. You twist bacon and bake it at 400F until it's crisp. A new one on me. Are you aware of this method? What's your way of cooking bacon?


Take a full-size sheet pan (half pan if you have a home-style oven) and place a couple of sheets of parchment paper on it. Lay out a pound of bacon with all the stips just barely separated.

Usually takes about 18 minutes in the middle pf a 450 oven. If your oven is not of the convection variety you might want to rotate the pan one time halfway through the cooking. This makes perfect bacon every time. Perfectly flat, perfectly crisp and no nitrosamine development.

Why a pound of bacon? Why not? I never throw any away.

I have never had any bacon cooked in a microwave that was acceptable.
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Robin Garr

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Robin Garr » Sat Aug 26, 2006 9:57 am

Larry Greenly wrote:What's your way of cooking bacon?


Funny you should ask, Larry ... we just went over to a new method, after talking during lunch with a chef at a tiny new fish place where an eight-seat lunch counter wraps around a small open kitchen where you can watch the chef (Mike Hungerford) at work. We were talking about bacon, and he recommended a recipe that's very much like Joseph's only slightly less aggressive, and very much like yours without the twist: Lay the bacon flat on parchment paper on a cookie sheet, and bake at 400 for 14 to 17 minutes or until crisp.

I'm fully on board with Joseph that you should make plenty - it keeps just fine in the fridge - and that the nuke oven might be functional but doesn't make the best bacon.
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John Tomasso

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by John Tomasso » Sat Aug 26, 2006 1:16 pm

I've been cooking bacon in the oven for a long time now. Less mess, and it doesn't have to be fiddled with while the other components of the meal are coming together.

Never tried twisting it, though. That's why Emeril is a multi bazillionaire, and I see lettuce for a living.

Twisting it.....who knew?
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Skye Astara

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Skye Astara » Sat Aug 26, 2006 4:29 pm

ChefCarey wrote:Perfectly flat, perfectly crisp and no nitrosamine development.


Would you mind elaborating on this? I thought that temperatures under 250 degrees F were necessary to prevent nitrosamine development? Did I have this backwards?

Thank you
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Bob Ross

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Bob Ross » Sat Aug 26, 2006 4:50 pm

Robin, I've read reports that high heat can turn the nitrite curing agents into nitrosamine. Bacon cooked in the microwave supposedly contains fewer nitrosamines.

Janet loves bacon, and I started to use the microwave method after reading the report. On high on our system, bacon comes out the way she likes it in about one minute.

I prefer the baked version myself, but what can you do with only one customer?


I think the leading study was at the University of Minnesota. Do you have any learning on the safety issue?

Thanks, Bob

Long link made short
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Re: A new twist on bacon

by ChefCarey » Sat Aug 26, 2006 5:26 pm

Skye Astara wrote:
ChefCarey wrote:Perfectly flat, perfectly crisp and no nitrosamine development.


Would you mind elaborating on this? I thought that temperatures under 250 degrees F were necessary to prevent nitrosamine development? Did I have this backwards?

Thank you


Nitrosamines are not really the problem they once were. With the addition of both Vitamins C and E to the curing, nitrosamine development is retarded. Also, the parchment paper syphons fat away from the bacon so it doesn't cook *in* the fat - this keeps the actual temperature much lower.
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Oven cooked bacon

by Karen/NoCA » Sat Aug 26, 2006 8:48 pm

I cook my bacon in the oven, as well. My twist on oven bacon is to lightly flour it. Keeps it from splattering all over the oven and adds a nice crunch. Sometimes I grind pepper over it. Yum.
I've cooked bacon in my Cuisinart Grill, but there is more clean-up involved.
Cooking bacon in a microwave on paper towels is risky. The paper can catch fire, and almost always sticks to the bacon.
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Carl K

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Re: Oven cooked bacon

by Carl K » Sat Aug 26, 2006 9:07 pm

I normally do mine under the brioler. Lay out the bacon on a rack in a pan, and cook for about 4 to 6 minutes, keeping a close eye on it at all times.
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Robin Garr

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Robin Garr » Sat Aug 26, 2006 11:26 pm

Bob Ross wrote:Do you have any learning on the safety issue?


Bob, I really don't. This is probably imprudent of me, but in general I figure there's so much hysteria about all the things in food that can kill us or make our children have three eyes, I honestly just figure it makes the most sense to lead a healthy life, eat a lot of organic and natural food (including bacon), and figure that if it didn't seem to do obvious harm to my grandparents and their grandparents, it probably won't hurt me too much.
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Barb Freda

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Barb Freda » Sun Aug 27, 2006 12:19 pm

I've cooked bacon in the oven since I used to cook pounds and pounds of it for work (BLT's with arugula and bacon mayo)...Never looked back.

B
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Howard

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Howard » Sun Aug 27, 2006 3:10 pm

Jenise introduced me to oven cooked bacon years ago on the old forum and I've never gone back. I bake it on a roasting pan that's got a slotted cover to the fat drips off. Mmmmmmm
Howard
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Skye Astara

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Skye Astara » Sun Aug 27, 2006 6:51 pm

Howard wrote:Jenise introduced me to oven cooked bacon years ago on the old forum and I've never gone back. I bake it on a roasting pan that's got a slotted cover to the fat drips off. Mmmmmmm


That was the same post that got me started on doing my bacon in the oven. I no longer remember what temp she said she uses so I guess lol.
For the scientist, as for the poet, there are as many levels of wonder in the silent beat of a butterfly wing as in the howl of a wolf.
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Bob Ross

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Bob Ross » Sun Aug 27, 2006 7:44 pm

Folks have mentioned Jenise's post several times, and in her absence I've taken the liberty of quoting her list of benefits: http://www.myspeakerscorner.com/forum/i ... mid=332594

1. Fresh taste: all the bacon cooks at once, so there's none of the rancidity that occurs in recurrent batches.

2. Ease: it's in the oven. No turning needed, no stove to clean, no standing there with a fork for half an hour. You can work on the rest of breakfast while the bacon's baking.

3. Quality: it cooks slowly, uniformly, shrinks less. You don't need a bacon flattener to keep it from curling.

4. Quantity: you can cook a whole pound in one cookie sheet. Go ahead and crowd them if you have to, or lay the extras that don't fit on top in the opposite direction. They'll be easier to peel off that way and reposition side by side when shrinkage of the first layer makes room.

I prefer thick sliced bacon cooked crisp. Takes about 20-25 minutes at 325, and I put the bacon into a cold oven that heats up while it's cooking.

Last Christmas we spent a few days in Portland Oregon with friends. One day, I made breakfast, baked the bacon. A few days later, Steve made breakfast, and pan-fried the bacon. Now I believed that oven baking resulted in a better taste, but I didn't realize why until I compared the same bacon product both ways days apart. And the difference was apparent--his first batch tasted like mine, but subsequent batches tasted less and less like bacon and more and more like hot fat.

Give it a try some time, you'll never go back to the old way
.

Somehow I missed Jenise's bacon post -- time for an old dog to learn a new trick.

Regards, Bob
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TimMc

Re: A new twist on bacon

by TimMc » Sun Aug 27, 2006 11:26 pm

We found microwave oven bacon to be as good if not better than the real deal.

Less mess, more taste.

Cool! :D
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Bob Ross

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Bob Ross » Mon Aug 28, 2006 1:00 am

Tim, Jenise isn't here to respond so I'll chime in one more time. She was comparing the pan fried with the oven baked techniques, and preferred oven baking.

I would have listed all of her pluses as favoring the microwave over pan frying -- hands down -- no contest.

But, Robin has tried both techniques, and prefers oven baking despite -- perhaps -- some danger from the longer cooking time.

That's good enough for me.

Next Sunday Janet's agreed to waffles and bacon -- I'll do a cookoff of both techniques and revert. [It's great to learn that you can keep cooked bacon in the fridge. That demolishes the advantage microwaving from scratch would have over baking in our house -- in our microwave we get Janet's preferred degree of crispness in less than two minutes, and lots of fat is absorbed in the paper towels.]

Tune in next Sunday! :-)

Regards, Bob

PS: I love threads like this one -- I just realized I have to do four batches -- two each flat and two each twisted. :-)

B.
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Eric Ifune

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Eric Ifune » Mon Aug 28, 2006 10:22 pm

Me, I still pan fry. That way I still have the bacon grease to cook with.
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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Bob Ross » Mon Aug 28, 2006 11:09 pm

Eric, I was thinking about that -- for my taste off, I plan to use a rack and capture the bacon fat in a pan carrying the rack.

Regards, Bob
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Re: A new twist on bacon

by ScottD » Tue Aug 29, 2006 1:16 pm

Larry Greenly wrote:I had breakfast at my cousin's place recently and chowed down on peppered bacon that was twisted not unlike rawhide chews for dogs.

It was nice and crisp. The cousin said she saw the method from Emeril. You twist bacon and bake it at 400F until it's crisp. A new one on me. Are you aware of this method? What's your way of cooking bacon?


Larry, we've used this method for brunches, twisted as you describe but then sprinkled with brown sugar and cayenne. Dresses it up a bit. For our standard usage though, iron skillet and lots of batches.
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Trudy Schaefer

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Trudy Schaefer » Wed Aug 30, 2006 5:23 pm

I cook mine in an iron skillet too. But I can't stand the mess in my kitchen, so I just cook it up outdoors on my gas grill--in the skillet. Who cares how much it spatters, and I let the skillet preheat with the grill, so it only takes a few minutes to cook. By the time it has cooled and crisped on paper towels, I can have the eggs ready as well. Mmm.

I too always make plenty and refrigerate it for use on salads, sandwiches, etc. in the coming days.
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Jeff Grossman/NYC

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Re: A new twist on bacon

by Jeff Grossman/NYC » Sat Sep 02, 2006 11:45 pm

Pan and oven are both good to me. (I think pan clean-up is easier than oven clean-up, though.)

Microwave is not good to me: it makes the bacon hard, but not crisp.

However, microwaving pepperoni slices *IS* a good thing! (Use lots of paper, though... those things give off an immense amount of grease.)
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Re: A new twist on bacon

by wnissen » Wed Sep 13, 2006 3:13 pm

Dear Chef Carey,

Thanks for posting this method. A pound of thick cut bacon fit easily on a half-sheet pan, and the parchment lining made for easy cleanup. The result was exactly like stove-top fried bacon, but flatter and more evenly cooked. My cast-iron pana will not be as well-seasoned in the future, but I thank you for saving me all the time and tending when I make bacon.

Walt
Walter Nissen
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ChefCarey

Re: A new twist on bacon

by ChefCarey » Wed Sep 13, 2006 3:31 pm

wnissen wrote:Dear Chef Carey,

Thanks for posting this method. A pound of thick cut bacon fit easily on a half-sheet pan, and the parchment lining made for easy cleanup. The result was exactly like stove-top fried bacon, but flatter and more evenly cooked. My cast-iron pana will not be as well-seasoned in the future, but I thank you for saving me all the time and tending when I make bacon.

Walt


You're quite welcome. :)
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