Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Time Savers: Bakin' yer Bacon

I can bring home the bacon...I can fry the bacon...I even know how to save my own bacon (usually), but baking bacon? That just sounds unnatural, so of course I had to give it a try. Here is what I learned, and a step by step tutorial on doing it yourself.
Step 1: Set oven to 350 degrees 
Step 2: Cut entire slab of bacon in half with kitchen shears. I use kitchen shears because I can cut through the whole slab much easier than with a knife.
Cutting your bacon in half is not strictly necessary, but I wanted sandwich-sized bacon.

Step 3: Lay a sheet of parchment paper (if available) on a cookie sheet with edges (you don't want hot grease rolling off the sides into your oven.) Now lay out your bacon in whatever arrangement works best for your pan and your purposes. You can see I reuse my paper until I have all my bacon baked.

Step 4: Put your bacon in the preheated oven for 20-30 minutes depending on how crisp you like it. (Ok, so this is a picture of me taking it out, but doesn't it look yummy?)

Step 5: Use a spatula to move the cooked bacon to a paper-towel covered plate to drain.

Step 6: Yum! Drool a little...and then sneak a piece when no one is looking. From this point, you can devour all the yummy goodness or save some for later.

Step 7: We made a couple of sandwiches and put the rest (I cooked 2 lbs) into a Ziploc bag with another paper towel to catch any extra grease. Store it in the fridge, so it's available for sandwiches, bacon bits, a quick breakfast, or just to sneak a piece now and then.
Warning: You may need to hide the bacon or put it in a tub marked {insert something your family hates to eat}--to keep it from disappearing too quickly.

Step 8: Don't throw out that bacon grease! Save it for the next time you make eggs, fried potatoes, cornbread, or whatever else you might want to flavor with bacon grease. My grease jar today used to be a baby food jar, and it just barely holds the grease. Learn more about grease jars here.
Step 9: Throw out your parchment paper and put your clean pan back in the cupboard. Or, if you didn't have parchment paper, buy some for next time and then take dish soap and squirt a good amount on your pan. Use your hand to make sure the entire pan is covered, including corners. Let the pan sit for an hour or two and then wash off with a sponge.
Step 10: Tell all yer friend's about my "Bakin' yer Bacon" post so they can try it too!
Now, wasn't that easy? No more bacon splatters from skillet frying either!