smackdown savory bacon recipes for your cooking pleasure…

here’s an overview of the recipes i used for last night’s bacon-off, in case you’d like to plan your own iron chef-style smackdown. the full overview of the evening can be found here

to take you into the list of dishes, recipes and photo, enjoy this starting photo of a selection of my three pounds of assorted pork belly product. yowza.

bacon-and-pork-belly-and-pancetta1

course one:  porkpeños, as named by iron sous chef jess – here’s a this is why you’re fat-style photo of the uncooked items, surrounding a pool of pancetta:

porkpenos

these are a great kinda trashy barbecue item, since they’d be best cooked on a grill so the jalapeños collapse into a blackened pile of cream cheese ooziness. you’ll need jalapeños, cream cheese, chipotles in adobo (fuck yeah) and bacon, plus some toothpicks. wash and seed the jalapeños (hold in your left hand and stick a small knife in the center, attempting not to stab yourself, and twist in a circle to cut out the center). dice some more jalapeños, some crispy cooked bacon, and some chipotles from your third can of chipotles purchased in the last five days. mix in with cream cheese until it’s a tasty smoky bacon-y hot mess of deliciousness. poke into empty jalapeno torpedos (yeah, that ñ is getting super annoying to insert) and then wrap in bacon and secure with toothpicks. fyi, depending on your cooking method, you should probably remove the toothpicks or soak them in water prior to cooking so you don’t set them on fire and have your porkpenos go down in a fiery ball of flames like goose from top gun.

next up, creamy white bean soup with truffle oil and crispy chunks of pancetta. i first had this soup at an amazing restaurant in old town san juan, puerto rico called marmalade, and then found a recipe here.  fun to serve in shot glasses or martini glasses. i forgot to take a photo of the finished presentation, but beans are pretty:

whitebeans

for my ‘entree’ course, i made fried pork belly dumplings and bacon fried rice. fried rice is super easy and tasty and can be made deliciously from scratch or with leftover rice and assorted meats and vegetables you might have in your fridge.  dumplings are way more effortful, but can be made fairly simply by buying dumpling wrappers from your local asian market and probably a lot of supermarkets now. then it’s just a matter of learning to fold dumplings, which is pretty simple and will easily impress your friends:

pork-belly-fried-dumplings2

fried rice is extremely forgiving and versatile, here’s the way i usually do it. here’s a bacon fried rice recipe:

1. cook some rice (usually white, but could also be good with brown) or pull some leftover rice from the fridge (if it’s been in there for a few days and gotten hard, pour some water in and stick it in the microwave for a little while).

2. fry some bacon in a pan. set aside the bacon, but leave the fat to infuse your fried rice with bacony goodness. if you’re doing this non-bacon-style, you can use pretty much any kind of oil except olive.

3. chop up some garlic and scallions, heat them in the bacon fat, and beat some eggs. pour them into the pan, let them cook for a few minutes on medium heat, then add the rice and the bits of bacon (or whatever meat you want). mix up the eggs, bacon and rice so the eggs get distributed around the rice, then let it all fry for a bit in the pan. add in cooked veggies if you want, make sure all the bits and pieces get hot and fried, then stuff it all in your face.

for the dumplings: appetite for china has a great recipe, so i won’t reinvent the wheel. i added king trumpet mushrooms for more flavor in the filling and made a tasty sauce by adding soy sauce, sesame oil, smashed garlic, scallions, and some spicy chili sauce.

dumpling-making

i’ll do a separate post on the wonders of bacon desserting and cocktailing in a bit…

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