Up Your Bacon Game
The Completely Counter-Intuitive Guide to Cooking Perfect Bacon
From Grand Lake to Larkspur, Montclair to Kensington, there’s an irresistible smell wafting through Bay Area Farmer’s Markets; and it’s The Baconer. The Baconer was founded last year by Camilo Velasquez and Elisa Lewis as a passion project after years of curing pork bellies for fun grew into perfecting how to craft the most flavorful, tender, and unctuous bacon in the known Universe. It wasn’t until a chance encounter with a family member’s unused sous-vide machine that the product became something more texturally dynamic, flavor-packed, and completely unique from traditional artisanal bacon brands. Our indulgently flavored strips and lardons are the only bacon that is sous-vide during the preparation process, and after your first taste, it becomes the only bacon worth eating.
The Baconer’s artisanal dry-cured bacon is sold both in thick cut strips and lardons - a baton shaped charcuterie cut more ideal for cooking with other ingredients. As we approach a full whirlwind year selling at Bay Area Farmers Markets, we have heard from hundreds of our customers about their successes and failures with cooking bacon at home. In our relentless pursuit of bringing you scandalously delicious bacon, we felt it’s high time to let everyone in on our completely counter-intuitive method of cooking bacon on a stovetop.
It’s important to note before we jump in that even though our bacon is finished sous vide, and is therefore technically cooked, you still need to cook it at home. Our sous vide process gives our bacon its delicate texture and intensifies our signature flavors, but nothing can ever replace the crisping and caramelization that can only come from a frying pan.
On to the main event!
The Baconer’s preferred method for how to cook bacon on the stovetop begins with a cold pan and the bacon or lardons laid out with just enough water to cover the bottom. Set heat to medium-high and simmer off the water, allowing the bacon to braise a bit before frying. After the water has cooked off, lower the heat to medium, and slowly crisp the first side. Once crisped to your liking, flip and finish the other side. This would be a good time to give in to the irresistible siren scent that has claimed countless bacon strips, devoured right off the pan before ever seeing a breakfast table. Go for it, no one’s watching.
Why this works
Consider for a moment, the pork chop dinner from our collective childhood which saw all the delicious juiciness of the meat lost and over-rendered upon the over-heated pan. Pork in general does not like being shocked by extreme heat - a reasonable preference by our estimation. By starting cold, and inserting the vital step of lightly braising the bacon before crisping, the end result will be a much juicier, tender and perfectly crispy bacon. Easing up on the heat during the frying step will preserve the sweeter notes, and avoid the acrid burnt taste that bacon can take on if it’s cooked at too high a temperature.