Bacon Lardons

This might seem like a really strange post to launch a brand new wine and food blog! But we are going to need these Bacon Lardons in a couple of posts along with Bacon Fat Cubes, Lemon Juice Cubes and some organic Lemon Zest. In the next two posts I’ll talk about why I like to have all three of these ingredients pre-prepped and in my freezer.

I am basically a “lazy” Chef. Let me explain.  I spent a great deal of my career doing the kind of cooking that was a long drawn out affair.  Roasting bones, making stocks from scratch, preparing and cooking recipes that had so many steps it would make your head spin, catering huge parties and events, developing daily specials, multi-tasking every way possible to cram as much as I could into a day and going home exhausted. I have spent many nights sleeping on a 50-pound sack of flour for a few hours then getting up to tackle dirty dishes for a 120 seat restaurant because the dish crew didn’t show up.

After a while I came to the conclusion that there must be a better way.  So, over the  years I have done every thing possible to have a well stocked pantry, refrigerator and freezer so my culinary life is less complicated when I want to create something delicious in just a few minutes. I have a prep-to-sitting-down-to-dinner rule at my house. If preparing dinner takes more than 30 minutes from the time I walk in the door till we are sitting down to eat I call and make reservations at the nearest restaurant!

My point is food doesn’t have to be complicated to be delicious and nutritious if you’ve done some pre-prepping of essential ingredients and have them on-hand. Making something to eat can be as simple as opening the refrigerator door, selecting a few ingredients and whipping up something on the spot.  Both Jocelyne (see her story in the About menu) and I do this on a daily basis and you can too! It just takes learning what goes together and being fearless in the kitchen.  So, let’s get started by pre-prepping some yummy Bacon Lardons!

I absolutely adore Bacon.  I just hate frying it.  It takes a little time to do it right.  Don’t get me wrong. There is nothing quite like the smell of sizzling bacon.  I just don’t want to have to go through the process every morning. I told you I am a “lazy” Chef.  One day I decided that I was going to fry a couple of pounds of bacon at one time and throw it in the freezer to speed things up when I wanted bacon.  At first I just left it as strips (which I still do on occasion).  But I’ve found that the most useful way for me is to make Bacon Lardons which is nothing more than a fancy term for little strips of julienned bacon.

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Bacon Lardons can be added to anything and everything that tastes good with bacon in it. Soups, scrambled eggs, sandwiches, salads and sauces to name a few.

The key to making great bacon is to fry it on medium heat and take your time, stirring it often and not over cooking it.  I usually pour off the bacon fat about half-way through the cooking process.   Once the Bacon Lardons are barely crisp I drain them in a colander then I transfer them to paper towels. The reason I don’t fry them to the very crispy stage is because there is a good chance they are going to get additional cooking time in the dish I am adding them to.

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Once the Bacon Lardons are cool I put them into a freezer container or freezer bag and put the date on the container.  These will keep for a few months in the freeze  or for a week or so in the refrigerator.

I especially love to put the Lardons in my egg dishes for breakfast.  Even more, I am always excited when I don’t have to spend time cleaning up a grease splattered stove every day.

Try this tip and let me know how you used the Lardons.  You’ll probably come up with an idea I haven’t even thought of! Bacon cocktails anyone? Chocolate covered Bacon Lardons for dessert?

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