Saturday, December 20, 2008

Bacon Apple Pie

Jane sent along another bit of bacon - a photo of Bacon Apple Pie from Flickr

I can imagine it being pretty tasty, but you never know until you try, eh?

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Bacon and Banana Pepper flatbread pizza

I'm currently visiting my folks in DC, and last night, we hit the Kennedy Center to see the Merce Cunningham Dance Company in action (conclusion: very modern. Maybe a little too modern.). We decided to grab dinner at the Kennedy Center cafeteria, which is probably the poshest cafeteria ever. And it was there that I first experienced bacon on pizza.

I'm not generally wild about flatbread pizza (Chicago deep dish all the way baby), but this was pretty effin' tasty. The combination of bacon and banana peppers was genius, and nicely offset with some parmesan (the menu claimed it was mozzarella, but I really don't think so). All in all, a tasty flavor experience, and one I intend to repeat and tinker with in my own kitchen sometime.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Bacon Cheese Roll

This kind of blows my mind.

It's so simple, so elegant... and my god, I'll bet it tastes amazing. 

(thanks to Jane for passing it on)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Chicken, Bacon, Wine

I've long been into the idea of trying to make coque au vin sometime, but it requires... effort. So, that time has not yet come. But I did end up making this chicken dinner that was vaguely in the spirit of coque au vin, in the sense that it involved chicken, bacon, and wine. So it was about as similar to the original as, shall we say, Thumper is to Pepe le Pew. But hey, it was ridiculously simple to make, and very tasty. Especially for something that was basically thrown together from what I had around the kitchen.

It's not the prettiest dinner I've ever made, I know.

One needs:

5 strips bacon
Chicken - I had a bunch of tenderloins, but a breast or two would work too?
2 onions
1 cup red wine  (I used the rest of the TJ's zin)
1 cup chicken broth
3 cloves garlic
thyme, oregano, rosemary, salt, pepper

In a large pan that'll hold a cup or two of liquid, fry the bacon. As it cooks, chop up the onion. When the bacon is almost done, pull it out, leaving the grease (of course), and throw in the onion and chicken. Brown the chicken on all sides. As it cooks, crush in the garlic, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Once it's well browned, crumble the bacon into it, and add the wine, chicken broth, and herbs - I added just a bit of rosemary, a shake of oregano, and a hefty shake of thyme. Cover and saute over medium-low heat for approximately 20 minutes, or until the chicken is wholly cooked and most of the liquid has reduced. 

I completed it by cooking some egg noodles and throwing them in at the end, but potatoes could work too. Coque au vin it ain't, but it's pretty good anyhow.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Asparagus with Bacon Vinaigrette

This was quite possibly the most fantastic dinner I have ever made for myself.

On the way home today I stopped off at the store and bought myself a 1.3 pound steak. Because I'm worth it. To do it justice, I decided to try something I've been intrigued by for awhile, namely, a bacon vinaigrette - I figured it'd be gorgeous on asparagus. How very right I was. Combined with a glass of Trader Joe's Reserve 2006 Sonoma County Zinfandel, it's nothing short of bliss. And took a mere 10 minutes to make!

One needs:

a big ol' steak
1/2 bunch of asparagus (I tried the frozen kind for the first time - not as good as fresh, to be sure, but really not bad!)
3 strips of bacon
1 shallot
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon water
garlic salt
lemon pepper
some olive oil

Open the wine and pour yourself a glass.

Preheat the oven to 450. Chop the bacon up fine and fry it. Lay the asparagus out on a baking sheet and drizzle the newly acquired bacon grease over it, reserving the bacon. Stick the asparagus in the oven. As it roasts (approximately 8 minutes), chop the shallot, add it and a splash of olive oil to the bacon. Saute over low heat for a minute or so, then add the vinegar, water, salt and pepper, and stir.  

Next, sprinkle salt and pepper over your steak. Melt some butter (and, for a real treat, a spoon or two of bacon grease) in a pan. Sear the steak on both sides, and lay it on a plate. 

Pull the asparagus out of the oven, toss with the vinaigrette, add to your plate. Briefly set aside.

Cut a thick slice of good bread and use it to mop up the drippings in the steak pan as an appetizer. 

Set your glass and plate down on the table. Give yourself a round of applause for preparing such a tremendous meal. Eat, savoring every wonderful bite. Cut another thick slice of bread and clean off your plate. Lean back, take a sip of wine, and light yourself a cigarette. Could life be any better?