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July 8, 2014
Bring on the Bacon! Creative Recipes for a Classic Ingredient
By Janet Tharpe
When we recently unveiled the new themed collections of recipes on justapinch.com I was faced with a major dilemma: what ingredient deserves to be in the spotlight? I pondered and pondered... over coffee, through dinner, in my sleep and finally over breakfast. And then it struck me! There are few ingredients so universally loved - and eaten - as... bacon!
And bacon's not just for breakfast any more! Folks everywhere are hip to the benefits of bacon and are slipping the good stuff into recipes wherever they can. In fact, Milwaukee's Jill Drury combined a whopping FIVE traditional breakfast favorites into her very unconventional - yet tasty - BMC2 Cupcakes.
"I am the girl who hides in the kitchen corner, eating cake for breakfast!" laughs Jill. "Never a huge lover of traditional eggs & bacon for breakfast, I was inspired to create this cupcake one year for Easter brunch. All your favorite breakfast ingredients in cupcake form! Who could go wrong with bacon, eggs, maple syrup, cinnamon, and apples?
"My cupcake quickly became a huge hit within my family. One bite and you're filled and ready to go. Soon, I was making them every Sunday! I have slowly turned my family into cake eaters for breakfast. I no longer stand in the corner alone."
I like that thinking, Jill! Share a piece of bacon and make a friend for life, that's what I say. And in this instance not only is Jill sharing her bacon, but also her love of sugary breakfasts. Ah yes, sweet mornings, indeed.
Another bacon-y recipe causing a stir is Diane Eldridge's super scrummy ("scrumptious" AND "yummy") Stuffed Mushrooms. A far cry from Jill's sweet cupcakes, these savory, smoky portabellos are jam-packed with cheesy goodness.
"I love mushrooms, any way ya make them," exclaims Diane. "This is one of my fave recipes for them... and [they are] sooooooo easy to make."
We just couldn't resist adding this recipe to "Bring on the Bacon", our new collection of bacon recipes. Diane uses simple, rich ingredients like crispy fried bacon and smoky pre-packaged cheese crackers to achieve a super flavorful dish with very little effort. Use baby portabellas like we did to turn these from a main dish stunner to an A+ finger food.
And speaking of finger foods, I just can’t seem to talk about bacon - which I do a lot - without bringing up Judy Sprague’s Bacon-Wrapped Dates with Parmesan. This recipe was one of the very first dishes to receive a Blue Ribbon in the Recipe Club, and remains a favorite among the Crew.
The real magic in this dish is not necessarily the individual ingredients, but rather the wonderful symphony of flavors they create when combined together! To achieve this plate-clearer, simply stuff ripe, pitted dates with a cube of deliciously salty Parmesano-Reggiano cheese. Wrap each sweet date with an entire slice of bacon, and then bake until perfectly done. The bacon will crisp, creating the perfect single-bite appetizer sure to please every palette.
Be sure to check out Bring on the Bacon!" and all the other new Recipe Samplers for fun meal ideas and more!
Leah Stacey CookingMaven - Apr 12, 2011
diane quaintance klearskye - Apr 12, 2011
These sound awesome. A great way to get kids to eat breakfast too.
Gloria Bernal mzglorybe - Apr 12, 2011
there is a cupcake shop here in CA that makes a bacon cupcake made with buttermilk, and mapley-syrup frosting that everyone loves, same idea! Like having pancakes and bacon for breakfast.
Jo Zimny EmilyJo - Apr 12, 2011
I love bacon, but with my cholesterol problems I am not allowed to eat it, but....and there always is a but, I have been eating Turkey Bacon, it's 97% fat free and the brand I buy is pretty healthy compared to pork bacon, so when there is a will, there is a way; and I'm so grateful for that!
Aurora McBee aurora - Apr 12, 2011
Scrummy! Love it!