Sunday, March 06, 2011

Deep fried bacon

Every so often I have these moments where I arrive at a pinnacle in life. Where everything I've done up to that point pales in comparison. Where time stops, the clouds part and an angelic chorus proclaims in perfect four part harmony: "Nice one, dude."

I've put off writing this up because I knew I just couldn't do it justice.

But seeing as I've got 500 words left on my daily write over at, I figured I might as well tackle this post.

So it all started with the Super Bowl. I invited some guys over to watch it, but with the time difference, kickoff was at 7 in the morning. Those of you who know me know that I'm extremely unathletic, and not the most avid fan of professional sports, but this time around I had something at stake. One time in college, I made scrambled eggs for Aaron Rodgers. So I figured this was my one shot at having my cooking win a Super Bowl (albeit 5 years after the fact).

In the interest of (awkward) full disclosure, I was actually more excited about making breakfast for the guys...Not sure what that says about me. Especially since I donned M's "Cihp and Adle" apron to do so.

But I digress. So the night before, I go by the supermarket and realize they no longer have the brand of bacon I like to buy out here (Maverick, for those playing along at home). For whatever reason, I'm just not a big fan of the bacon that Hormel sells in China. But I figure the Super Bowl is all about quantity over quality, so I buy the super pack of Hormel Value Bacon: 2.2 pounds of low-grade goodness.

Monday morning rolls around and I start frying up some bacon, but it's just me and a couple other guys because everyone else slept in. Hmm...

So I eat a few slices, the other guys eat some, and M eats some when she wakes up. But we've still got about a pound and a half left.

Throughout the following week, I cooked it up for breakfast (at one point I used it to make a sandwich using half a sesame bagel, half a rosemary garlic bagel, a fried egg, cream cheese, fresh parmesan and, of course, bacon. So glorious.) and lunch, but I was worried that I wouldn't finish it before it went bad.

(By the way, Beijingers should definitely try the rosemary garlic bagels from Hegel's Bagels. They're phenomenal.)

And then Saturday rolled around and I had a genius idea. We had scheduled a fry party for that night, and in the interest of frying something new every time, I decided to go ahead and try to make deep fried bacon.

I consulted this recipe, although at some point different battering processes start to run together in my brain. In fact, I think I used the dry mix leftover from my favorite wings recipe, which has a nice kick to it.

So here's the cliff notes recipe:
Step 1. Dip bacon in some kind of egg + milk mixture
Step 2. Dredge bacon in some kind of flour + spices mixture
Step 3. Deep fry for several minutes in 350 degree oil
Step 4. ????
Step 5. Profit!

The original recipe says to put it in the oven for extra crispiness, but I found that it was cooked through and crunchy enough just from the deep frying (as it should be).

Eating this, I could almost imagine my heart slowing down. Although, it can't be much worse than some of the other stuff I make (Amy, you're the resident nutritionist. Any thoughts?)

Fittingly, I had added bacon lard into the frying oil because I started out by trying Cook's Illustrated's Easier French Fries recipe, which turned out ok, but not crispy. Counterintuitively, that recipe has you start with the fries in cold oil and gradually increase the heat.

I like to lightly salt anything savory that comes out of the deep fryer, but this might be one case where I'd advise against it.

Anyway, I've rambled on long enough. Here's how the deep fried bacon came out:

You'll have to trust me on this one. It tastes better than it looks :).

Not sure where to go from here. Although, I did come up with the crazy idea for "deep fried deep fryer"...hehehe, maybe next time.

And yes, in case you were wondering, this is a shameless attempt at going viral.


Amy said...

DUDE. i had fried pig ears w/ aioli the other night and when i bit into them, i could feel the fat squirting into my mouth. instead of a hangover -- akin to OD'ing on alcohol -- i got 2 days of heartburn.

but i'm not gonna lie, the experience was worth it. haha.

J.Dou said...

Wow. Where'd you get fried pig ears from?

We had pork trotter recently and I could feel the hoof collagen sliding around in my mouth. Yumm...

Amy said...

apparently they're the new thing in LA. if i didn't have foodie friends, i would have never known...