Monday, April 3, 2017

Roasted Bacon

It is quite possible you think this might be a belated April Fool's Day post. It's not. Or maybe wondering 'Does someone really needs a recipe for Roasted Bacon?' That might depend on your definition of a recipe. However, if you have never roasted bacon in the oven before or have and keep forgetting (like I do) the oven temperature required needed to get perfectly crisp bacon, then the answer is definitely yes. We all should have or rather need a recipe for Roasted Bacon in our lives to put an end to the days of having bacon grease splatter all over the top of your stove. Better yet. We can all stop ruining our nails and sponges spending an inordinate amount of time soaking and scrubbing our favorite frying pans.  With a simple recipe for Roasted Bacon, nothing is standing in the way of you and a platter of delicious crispy bacon.

"If it's not broken don't fix it." Going the non-traditional route for making anything most of us grew up accustomed to making only one way can cause a bit of skepticism. But it's kind of like most things in life. Until you actually experience them you don't realize what you had been missing out on. Roasted bacon might be one of those things in your life.

This is a plain, simple version of roasted bacon. The only ingredient needed is bacon. Preferably a good-quality thick cut bacon. A large rimmed baking sheet, a baking/cooling rack and some foil/parchment paper to line the pan are the only things you need. Besides an oven of course.

Roasting the bacon on a rack, versus laying it flat on the pan, creates extra crispy bacon. Raising the bacon off the baking sheet allows the heat to circulate evenly around the bacon. If you like the edges of your bacon to be crisp, but love the center of your bacon to have some of that chewiness to it, don't roast it on a rack. Simply roast in on a baking pan lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Leave some space between the slices to prevent your bacon slices from sticking to one another.

The bacon roasts in a 400 degree (F) oven for 18-22 minutes, depending on the thickness of bacon slices. Place the baking pan on the lower rack in the oven and begin checking for doneness at around the 15 minute mark. If you are making two trays of roasted bacon, place one pan on the lower rack and the other on the upper rack.

Transferring the roasted bacon to a platter lined with paper towels allows any residual grease to be absorbed as well as finishes the crisping.

Whether you are making bacon for breakfast, for BLT sandwiches, or for any recipe calling for cooked bacon, try roasting it from now on. If you like your eggs or hash brown potatoes fried in bacon grease, you still can. Just drain the drippings from the baking sheet into your pan. Save your cast iron skillet for making Dutch Babies, cornbread, skillet cookies or brownies, and/or frittatas. You have more important things to do with your life than clean up after cooking bacon on the stove top.

Roasted Bacon

1/2 to 1 pound of bacon (preferably a thick-cut bacon)

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees (F). Place an over rack in the lower third of the oven. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper OR place a cooling rack on top the foil/paper lined baking sheet.
2. Lay the strips of bacon in a single layer, leaving some space between each of them.
3. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a beautiful golden brown. Note: Baking time may vary based on the thickness of the bacon. Check for doneness at the 15 minute mark.
4. Using a fork or tongs, transfer the bacon to a platter lined with paper towels. 
5. Serve immediately. 

Dogwoods in bloom (April, 2017)

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