Okay my friends – the time has come to set the record straight.
All bacon is good bacon, but there is a right way and a wrong way to end up with the the best bacon. When I first started cooking bacon this way, I felt a bit dirty, a bit lazy, a bit… inattentive.
If you love bacon, you know it can take a certain amount of work. Tending and flipping and all the while trying not to get burnt by the the flaming hot yet magical grease sprinkles flying from the pan. It’s Sunday and you’re probably not wearing pants… I get it… (insert popular phrase about how authentic laboring to do difficult things can be here).
This is why I’m writing to you today. There is a better way that will transform your brunch experience forever! I’m going to share with you – how to cook bacon.
You will need 3 items:
– Your bacon, cut from it’s packaging but still cold and firm, preferably straight from the refrigerator.
– A sheet pan covered in parchment paper (NOT WAXED PAPER).
– An oven that is turned off.
Now, you will simply lay your bacon in a single row on the sheet tray covered in parchment paper (as pictured above).
(Option 2: You can also, if you feel so inclined, get fancy. Below, I present to you asparagus wrapped in bacon. You cut off the hard ends of fresh asparagus and then, in groups of 2 or 3, wrap them in a single slice of bacon. They will stay “pretty” if you wrap them tightly and place the ends of the bacon
down on the pan.)
Now that you have your bacon (and maybe asparagus) on the sheet tray you will place the tray into the cold oven.
THEN – turn on the oven to 400 degrees. The bacon will cook slowly as the oven temp rises. For average thick cut slices, the bacon will be cooked but not overly crispy in about 15 minutes, and very crispy in 20 minutes. Remove from the oven when it has achieved your desired level of crispness.
Incidentally, 15-20 minutes is the perfect amount of time to pour orange juice, brew coffee and scramble some eggs – which leads me to believe this is the way we were intended to cook our bacon. Without getting burnt, in our pajamas, so it would be warm and crispy for consumption at the same time all our other food is ready.
(If you choose the asparagus method, you will want to flip the rolls after 15 minutes for even cooking. 5 more minutes and they will usually be done!)
Wait – what about the bacon grease you ask!? I have to cook it in a pan to save the drippings! I know, I save mine too. It’s easy enough to pour off the parchment paper and into a container once it has cooled for about 15 minutes. Just don’t do this when it’s hot out of the oven – remember – nothing ruins brunch like emergency room visits!
So hooray for bacon! The fats will keep you fuller longer, and the taste will make you happy. There isn’t a much better way to start a day. Or end one if you need! My dinner tonight was a salad of kale, marinated artichokes, pico, and bacon bits, along with my asparagus wrapped bacon (I had leftovers from the weekend, they had to be used!) Blackberries rounded it out.
Happy cooking and bacon-ing to you all!