Back to Basics: Perfect Oven Bacon

{part one}

CrispyBacon

One thing I noticed while blogging before is that I felt as if I had to come up with extremely unique recipes.  However, I realized more often than not I find myself researching general cooking tips and tricks.  By perfecting the basics, I then add to my recipe making it more unique.  Therefore, I decided to start to compile a list of my basic recipes.  Over the next few months, I am going to share recipes that I have spent many a time trying to get the perfect cooking method.

First up on the basics is many people’s favorite:  Bacon.

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I’ve fried, microwaved, broiled you name it to figure out the best way to produce a crispy piece of bacon.  I think I finally have the perfect method:  baking.  It is calling BAKE-ON, right?  Not FRY-ON.  This produces a perfectly crisp piece of bacon, prevents from getting a bacon grease burn, and your house won’t smell like bacon for days.

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It is also VERY important to buy quality bacon for the perfect piece.  Bacon is definitely not a Kroger brand item.  I mean come on, you are eating a delicious, fatty, 90 calories per slice piece of deliciousness, you might as well go big.  So no being stingy here.  Buy the good stuff, whether it is behind the meat counter or the Black Label for Hormel.  Inspect your bacon package too before tossing it into your cart.  Make sure it isn’t all white and fatty.  Now you want a good deal of the white, but definitely more meat part.

This method is fool-proof for the perfect piece of bacon.  If you like your bacon a little less crispy, just adjust the cook time.  Remember the bacon will continue to cook when you take it out of the oven, especially if you don’t immediately blot the grease.  On a scale of 1-10 how much are your craving bacon??

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Perfect Crispy oven bacon

 

Prep Time:  1 minutes   |||   Cook TIme: 15-18 minutes   |||   Servings: 4  |||   Difficulty: Low

Ingredients:
BACON

Directions:
1.  Remove bacon from packaging and blot with a paper towel to remove any present moisture.

2.  Place on a baking sheet, do not overcrowd.

3.  Put the baking sheets in the oven and turn on to 400 degrees.  This is very important!  Do not preheat the oven.  The oven will heat while slowly baking the bacon.

4.  Bake for 15-18 minutes, flipping the pieces halfway through the baking time.

5.  Remove from oven once just nearly crisp and place on a piece of paper towel.

6.  Blot with paper towel removing the excess grease.

Serve & enjoy :)

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Curried Cauliflower

{whole foods copycat}

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See what I did there?  bolded the cat part.  Crazy cat lady at heart :)

You guys, I love Whole Foods.  It’s too expensive for my lifestyle though.  The main thing I love is the salad bar and prepared foods section.  It’s about a $9 lunch so I only allow myself to go about every 2 weeks.  I have several favorites all of which I plan to recreate.  To name a few:  Sriracha brussell sprouts, cold sesame noodles with cucumbers, balsamic roasted beets, artichoke spinach dip, casear pasta salad, and the curried cauliflower.

My goal is to try to make my own version of these and compare them to the real deal.  I only get the curried cauliflower every once in awhile because they are pretty rich and a flavor that requires “having a taste for”.  But I mean, who wakes up and says “Omg I am totally in the mood for curried cauliflower”  No one.

 

And that’s the special  thing about the Whole Foods prepared food section.  The one by work varies often so when my favorite ones appear that “taste” immediately happens.

I usually get the little plastic container thing and give myself a small little bit of several items.  Note to self:  do not overload on cherry tomatoes their weight makes your salad $15.  It really is the perfect lunch.  I don’t think there is a Love Your Lunch recipe that beats a Whole Foods lunch.

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However, if I can recreate all the delicious things at Whole Foods I will be able to bring them to lunch myself (and probably be cheaper too!).  I am going to attempt a little series that will be my Not So Doughie (not that WFs is doughie) version of my Whole Foods favorites.  So up first:  Curried Cauliflower

curried cauliflower

Recipe By:  Sara
Prep Time:  5 minutes   |||   Cook TIme:  25-30 minutes   |||   Servings: 4 |||   Difficult Level:  Low

Ingredients:
1 head of cauliflower, cut into pieces
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp curry powder
1 Tbsp cumin
1/2 tsp Garam Masala
1/2 tsp fennel seed
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup frozen peas

Directions:
1.  In a small bowl, combine the oil and all of the spices and garlic.  Stir to combine.
2.  Toss in the cauliflower and use your hands to thoroughly coat the pieces.
3.  Spread over a baking sheet and put in the oven at 350 degrees.
4.  Roast for about 25-30 minutes until fork tender (depends on size of the pieces)
5.  Remove from the oven and put into serving dish.
6.  Add the peas and cilantro, stir and set aside.  The heat from the cauliflower will “cook” the peas.
7.  Serve warm or chilled.

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Enjoy!

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