From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

The Bacon Portal

Bacon is a cured meat prepared from a pig. It is first cured using large quantities of salt, either in a brine or in a dry packing; the result is fresh bacon (also green bacon). Fresh bacon may then be further dried for weeks or months (usually in cold air), boiled, or smoked. Fresh and dried bacon must be cooked before eating. Boiled bacon is ready to eat, as is some smoked bacon, but either may be cooked further before eating. Bacon is prepared from several different cuts of meat. It is usually made from side and back cuts of pork, except in the United States, where it is almost always prepared from pork belly (typically referred to as "streaky", "fatty", or "American style" outside of the US). The side cut has more meat and less fat than the belly. Bacon may be prepared from either of two distinct back cuts: fatback, which is almost pure fat, and pork loin, which is very lean. Bacon-cured pork loin is known as back bacon.

Bacon may be eaten smoked, boiled, fried, baked, or grilled, or used as a minor ingredient to flavor dishes. Bacon is also used for barding and larding roasts, especially game birds. The word is derived from the Old High German bacho, meaning "buttock", "ham" or "side of bacon", and cognate with the Old French bacon.

In continental Europe, this part of the pig is usually not smoked like bacon is in the United States; it is used primarily in cubes (lardons) as a cooking ingredient, valued both as a source of fat and for its flavor. In Italy, this is called pancetta and is usually cooked in small cubes or served uncooked and thinly sliced as part of an antipasto.

Meat from other animals, such as beef, lamb, chicken, goat, or turkey, may also be cut, cured, or otherwise prepared to resemble bacon, and may even be referred to as "bacon". Such use is common in areas with significant Jewish and Muslim populations. The USDA defines bacon as "the cured belly of a swine carcass"; other cuts and characteristics must be separately qualified (e.g., "smoked pork loin bacon"). For safety, bacon must be treated for trichinella, a parasitic roundworm which can be destroyed by heating, freezing, drying, or smoking.

Bacon is distinguished from salt pork and ham by differences in the brine (or dry packing). Bacon brine has added ingredients, most notably sodium nitrite, and occasionally sodium nitrate or saltpeter, added to cure the meat; sodium ascorbate or erythorbate are added to accelerate curing and stabilize color. Flavorings such as brown sugar or maple are used for some products. If used, sodium polyphosphates are added to improve sliceability and reduce spattering when the bacon is pan fried. Today, a brine for ham, but not bacon, includes a large amount of sugar. Historically, "ham" and "bacon" referred to different cuts of meat that were brined or packed identically, often together in the same barrel.

More about Bacon...

Selected article

BLT sandwich
The BLT Cookbook was written by Michele Anna Jordan about the preparation of various types of BLT sandwich. The cookbook was published by William Morrow Cookbooks in the United States in June 2003. Jordan is a food writer and has written for The Press Democrat; The BLT Cookbook is her 14th published book. She researched the book for ten years, and taste-tested hundreds of variations on the sandwich in the process. Jordan writes of her passion for the BLT sandwich in the book, describing it as America's most beloved sandwich. She instructs the reader on how to acquire and prepare the best ingredients for the sandwich. The book includes recipes with varying types of ingredients, though each recipe includes tomatoes. Many recipes in the book are not sandwiches, and include appetizers, soups, and salads. The author includes recipes for desserts and suggests wines to have with the sandwich. The book was positively received, and the National Pork Board highly recommended it. A review in The Detroit News commented that the book includes "mouthwatering recipes", and the San Francisco Chronicle called it a "neat little book" on the subject. The food editor for the Daily Herald noted that recipes in the book "will surely shake up your next toasted meal". The Anchorage Daily News called it the "definitive book" on the BLT sandwich.

Selected picture

Bacon wrapped shrimp with mozzarella cheese and BBQ sauce.
Credit: WxMom

Bacon wrapped shrimp with mozzarella cheese and BBQ sauce.

Did you know...

Chocolate covered bacon from the Minnesota State Fair

Selected dish

Bacon vodka is vodka infused with bacon flavor, part of a larger trend of "carnivorous cocktails" and the addition of umami (savory) flavor to mixed drinks. The infused alcohol can be sipped but it typically used in mixed drinks like a bloody mary or bacon martini. Bakon Vodka has received critical acclaim by professional mixologists, winning the 2010 Silver Medal winner in the Wine and Spirits category in the Beverage World BevStar Awards, and a silver medal in the SIP Awards International Spirits Competition. Bakon was also featured in a number of TV programs including The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, and The Today Show.




Selected quote

Icon of a quill and paper
For us the pig's the means, while bacon is the end / Providing gustatory heights to which we can ascend.

Quality content

Featured article star.png

Featured articles

Good articles

Did you know? articles

Things you can do

Here are some tasks awaiting attention:

Main topics

NCI bacon.jpg

Related portals

Associated Wikimedia

Bacon on Wikinews  Bacon on Wikiquote  Bacon on Wikibooks  Bacon on Wikisource  Bacon on Wiktionary  Bacon on Wikiversity  Bacon on Wikimedia Commons
News Quotations Manuals & Texts Texts Definitions Learning resources Images & Media
Wikipedia's Portals