By now you must have heard that there was a complete recall of all Irish pork products, due to the discovery of a deadly toxin in the feed being fed to local pigs. No bacon, no sausage, no Sunday pork roasts or chops. I feel just terrible for the good people of this island nation…some of them, no doubt, distant relatives of mine. And if they’re anything like me, they’ll miss their pork.
To make matters worse, there is now fear that local beef may also be affected. Good grief, what’s next? Another potato famine? While this beef crisis isn’t a done deal, I’m sure it has everyone in a state of panic. I know corned beef and cabbage isn’t really the Irish tradition it’s made out to be, but I tend to ignore the facts and rely on my brain’s vast collection of stereotypes. And in my mind, those Irish lads and lassies are going to miss their corned beef most of all. *Sniff, sniff.*

And so tonight I plan to raise a pint and make a silent plea for the plight of our Irish friends. May the gods of cattle smile on their gentle herds, and give them back their tasty bacon.

I love this painting of a Bacon Sandwich by Ali Spagnola. Each of her paintings has this simple, iconic style about it, and here’s something extra interesting about her…she’s giving away her art. Seriously. Check out her Free Paintings link and you can read all about it. She’s accepting donations, but refusing to put a price on her art, not even the price of shipping! Her work really appeals to me, and her approach to sharing it with the world is stunning. She can count me a fan for life.

From PBFComics.com

Just a little update on my weekend: My husband came home after 9 weeks away on business, so I decided to have a second Thanksgiving for obvious reasons. This time when prepping the turkey, I put an entire stick of bacon butter under the skin! (Look for the recipe at the end of that linked post…I used salted butter rather than unsalted, but I’m a saltaholic.) And I’m here to tell you it was amazing…kept the breast wonderfully tender and moist, and added a nice saltiness directly to the meat. I highly recommend this method for any poultry roasting in your future!

If you’re like me, you still haven’t purchased holiday cards to send to your friends and family. Or, maybe you’re considering using the cards you have leftover from last year…mine feature a bottle of Maker’s Mark with a scarf around it’s neck. Pretty darn cool, actually, but not very bacony.

I was really excited when Naseem found these Shaky Bacon Christmas Cards from the Mr. Toast Etsy Store, but then incredibly deflated when I found out the cards were sold out. So here are my suggestions: 1) Let’s inundate the Mr. Toast site with requests for more cards! Surely he’ll crack under the pressure. 2) Let’s inundate Naseem with requests to create a holiday bacon card of her own, featuring the two adorable bacon folks she made me for Thanksgiving. Surely she’ll crack under the pressure.

If you’re looking for more bacon-laced holiday cheer, how about this Bacon Christmas Tree shirt? It’s festive, it’s wearable, and it’ll take people a minute to even figure out it’s made of bacon! Like one of those stereogram optical illusion posters. Remember those? They were awesome.

Or maybe you don’t celebrate Christmas. (Hi Atheists, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, and millions of other non-Christians!) Well, anytime’s a good time for pirates! Yes, Captain Bacon is here to pillage, plunder and set sail with all the holiday booty he can find! Join his crew of salty (and smoky) sea dogs and set a course for adventure. Yaaargh!

I’m only a recent convert to the Cobb Salad. I grew up in a time and place where salads consisted of iceberg lettuce, tomatoes and cucumbers with any variety of gloopy dressings available, preferably something mayo based in my household. I was probably 21 before I had a salad I even remotely enjoyed: the Chef’s. And these I became obsessed with. Meat and cheese in a salad? Hell yes! Still, it would be many more years before I began my true love affair with the wide variety of “breadless sandwiches” that make up my current repertoire of lunches.

A few years back, I was obsessed with the Wine Cask’s chopped salad. I went there often for business lunches, and happily ordered the same thing every time. All that diced salami and cheese made eating salad seem like a luxury rather than a figure-friendly sacrifice. But one day, as restaurants tend to do, they changed their menu. My precious chopped was gone. I had always avoided the Cobb because the idea of eggs in my salad was unsettling. But there I was, sitting at a table full of elegant ladies, each of whom had ordered the Mediterranean or the Cobb. My choices were few: 1) order the Kobe burger and look like an uncivilized tomboy, 2) order the Mediterranean…not really an option as I hate Kalamata olives, or 3) order the Cobb and hope for the best.

When the salad arrived, I was amazed. SO MUCH STUFF other than leafy greens! Avocado! And the bacon…Nueske’s thick-cut, applewood smoked bacon. To die for. No one ingredient was overpowering, but this thing was basically a BLTA, plus chicken, plus eggs, plus blue cheese! Possibly the best salad I’ve ever eaten to this day.

Mmmm...look at all that bacon

Sadly, at $15+ a pop, the Wine Cask Cobb is a little steep for my everyday lunch budget. So I reserve that experience for meetings with VIPs, and have become a regular at the Nordstrom Cafe down the street. They have lots of great salads, but their Cobb is incredibly hearty and filling. I skip the blue cheese, but amazingly I’ve come to terms with the eggs. Somehow it just wouldn’t be a Cobb without them. If you haven’t tried out your local Nordstrom Cafe, go there next time you’re shopping. Order a salad and the coconut cake (since you only had salad for lunch.) I promise it will be a lunch to remember.

Honestly…how many of you listed bacon as one of the many things for which you are thankful last Thursday? I know I did.

Via

That Mr. Dave at the Ridiculous Food Society just keeps wowing me! You may remember that in October he made sausage entirely out of bacon, a feat heretofore unheard of. So of course I have to check in on him every once in a while and see what he’s up to. Seems that the day before Thanksgiving, he was up to ridiculous goodness.

Yes, Mr. Dave invented the Bacon Rice Krispies Treat(BRKT); same basic recipe as the classic RKT, but with a package of bacon thrown in for fun. I wish there was a more close-up photo, but even this one is making me hungry. Rice Krispies Treats are such a simple delight, just tastes like sticky sweet and crispiness. And it was an equally simple idea to throw in some salty, smoky bacon. It’s the kind of thing you wish you had thought up yourself.

But you didn’t. Mr. Dave did.

Thanks, Mr. Dave, for another great idea. This will be making its way to the next Bacon Day for sure.

Wow, Thanksgiving was fun. What I remember of it, at least. It certainly was a day of indulgence, and enjoying good friends. My gang of merry revelers all pitched in to make it a day of joy-filled memories (and black-outs.)

As Naseem mentioned in her Thursday post, she brought me the cutest bacons ever made. Adorned in a pilgrim hat and native head dress, these Thanksgiving guardians stood proudly by the beautiful centerpiece (until we lit the candle), also made by Naseem with succulent clippings from her garden. It took me a few minutes to get through the, “I can’t believe you made thats” and, “Aaw, you really shouldn’t haves” before we could get down to the business of baking. But eventually our hunger got the best of us and it was time for a late breakfast.

For months now I’ve been planning to make the famous Bacon Cinnamon Rolls. I’m not always the biggest fan of mixing my salty and sweet, but these things really did look good to me, and since Thanksgiving is the one day of the year that I indulge in Pillsbury products, I figured, what the heck? We used Trader Joe’s thick-cut, applewood-smoked bacon for this recipe, and a basic can of Pillsbury Cinnamon Rolls. Turned out the rolls either never were “rolled” or had been in the can so long they could not longer be taken apart. At any rate, we used a knife to “unroll” them, and rolled each back up with a slice of bacon. I had pre-cooked the bacon to about half done in the oven.

We ended up securing each roll with a toothpick so they wouldn’t unravel, and baked for about 13 minutes. (I think my oven’s thermometer may be off…the can only called for 10 minutes.) We let them cool about 5 minutes, and then frosted those beautiful babies with the can of glaze provided. We held off as long as we could, but finally they had to be tasted. And they were…DELICIOUS! Oh my gosh, I am so going to make these again. We each ate two with a chilly mimosa and forced ourselves to stop eating so we could keep doing other dinner prep. But dang, I could have gone for a third.

The rest of the food was pretty standard holiday fare and mostly non-bacony except the green beans. The stuffing was jam-packed with spicy and sweet Italian pork sausage, which was pretty awesome. And this was funny: right before serving dinner, I announced, “Oh wait, I need to make the salad. Do you guys want salad?” The unanimous answer was, “no!” And so, yet another saladless Thanksgiving was had.

I’m sad to report that the turkey and gravy were both demolished! Not a leftover in sight. Which means…Thanksgiving part II next weekend when the husband gets back in town. It’ll be tough to stuff myself with all that delicious food again, but it’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make. Big thanks to Naseem for being my “right hand man,” and to all my guests for sharing the day with me. I’m thankful for each and every one of you.