Friday, October 1, 2010

Ode To Bacon

In the ever changing world of culinary creations we see different trends come and go. As I am a bit of a purist, I usually stick with one rule when it comes to creating a new dish. Are you ready for my secret? Because it’s a big one… In fact I am actually thinking I should get a patent on it because it’s almost as catchy as that guy that says “Let’s get ready to rumble”. In fact, it’s kind of like the culinary version of that phrase. Ok, so here it is… The Grand Poobah of ingredients; the holy trifecta of gastronomy; the meatatarian’s savior should Armageddon come and I have to pick my last meal, dammit I want it to start with this:
Butter, Bacon and Booze.

That’s right kiddies, those three ingredients are the secret to all of my knock down, blow your mind, ‘I can’t believe she made that’ dishes. Beouf bourguignon, pan seared pheasant with fig demi-glace, herb crusted rib-eye roasts, even my recipe for braised octopus. You may not know it’s there, but your taste buds will thank me indefinitely.

Lately I have been thinking about the culinary need for bacon and why we can’t seem to get enough of it. In fact, I’ve decided that it should be in a category of its own in the food group’s pyramid.

Much to the detriment of my arteries, I recently wrote a recipe for Bacon-Maple Cupcakes with Maple Butter-Cream Frosting. ..“Que?” you say? “Quelle horreur? Having bacon for dessert???” NO. I say it’s AWESOME. The sweet and savory combination of sugary maple and pork belly is really just the best thing since life spread. And little old moi isn’t the only one that thinks so either.

At John Howie Steak at the Bravern, among the fried truffle gnocchi and pork belly sliders is a decadent dish that I have come to love, and I am sure Paula Dean would highly applaud- Deep Fried Kurobuta Bacon. Because honestly, what’s better than bacon? Deep fried bacon. Yes I said it. I love it. And you should love it too.

Skillet Street Food does an amazing Bacon Jam that is slathered on their signature burgers. Caramelized onions, bacon, spices and perhaps even some crack because week after week I find myself frantically checking their website for location info and waiting in line like a culinary junkie needing my fix.

At Voodoo Doughnuts in Portland one of their best sellers is the Maple Bacon Bar. A traditional maple bar in all its yeasty goodness, topped off with perfectly crisp bacon strips that even had Anthony Bourdain reeling for more.

Bakon Vodka has even become a staple at Bloody Mary breakfast bars around our fair city, and honestly I can’t think of anything more fabulous than that.

Perhaps my arteries loathe me, and I am reducing years off my life, and I may even start getting hate mail from PETA for my enthusiastic barbarism in the name of gastronomic perfection- But you know what? I honestly don’t care. We’re only here once, this isn’t a dress rehearsal, and I intend to enjoy every minute of it. Because as a wise Disney character by the name of Ratatouille once said, “If we are what we eat, then I only want to eat the good stuff”

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