I take a fair amount of good-natured ribbing from a certain meat-loving food blogger about my insistence on organic, local, seasonal, pastured or free-range food choices. He thinks I'm a little silly, and he's probably right. Still, in most things, I remain adamant; he says I'm stubborn. I prefer the word steadfast.
One thing we do agree on, however, is bacon. We both love it.
I have always said that Nueske's Bacon is my gold standard. It has the perfect balance of smoke, sweet, texture and salt to please me. Unfortunately, it isn't made locally, so it has to be ordered from afar and that's not exactly local, is it?
So, I'm always on the lookout for good bacon from closer than Wisconsin. I love Coleman's hot dogs, so when I happened upon a package of their bacon at my local market, I decided to give it a try. It's from Colorado - still not local - but closer than WI, right?
We cooked up the bacon for our long, leisurely Sunday breakfast with eggs, wheatberry toast with Meyer lemon marmalade and coffee. The rashers are thinner than the local artisan bacons we mostly buy, but they are thicker than many national brands. They cooked up perfectly - crisp for me and slightly droopy for My Beloved. The flavors of pig, salt and sweet were there but, sadly, no smoke. It's hard to complain about bacon - I mean, what's not to like? - but I have to say that Nueske's still wins for that smoky profile that signals bacon perfection.
The search for perfect local bacon continues. I'm happy to shoulder the task, with help from my blogging pal. Stay tuned.