Perfectly Cooked Bacon and Eggs (with a Wine Pairing)

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baconThere are few better ways to start the morning than with bacon and eggs. Unfortunately, more often than not, cooking bacon can be a messy chore. Grease splatters all over your stove and it is a rare bacon aficionado without the scars of the pig on their hands, wrists, and forearms. Add in the fact that cooking bacon in a pan requires a lot of vigilance.

There is a way around the mess and the burned skin; cooking bacon in the oven. I tried this a few times over the years, and failed miserably every time. That is, until I learned the secret to this method. If you search the Web for ways to cook bacon, the oven method comes up over and over. However, almost every site gets it wrong and will set you up for failure. Here at Another Wine Blog we would never set you up for failure, especially not in the kitchen or the wine cellar.

Nearly every recipe out there reaches the fail state with the very first word of their instructions. As soon as they say ‘pre-heat’ they have tried to ruin your wonderfully cured and smoked swine flesh. The bastards!

The trick to cooking bacon this way is to place it into the oven BEFORE turning it on. Letting the bacon slowly come up to temperature and cook will give you perfectly cooked and perfectly flat strips. It lets the fat render without burning. No mess, no new scars, and no standing over a sputtering, spattering pan.

Here is how I do it. Find an oven-safe rack that fits inside of shallow-sided baking sheet. Lay out your strips evenly on the rack, place in a cold oven, and turn it up to 400° F. I set my timer for 10 minutes because my oven is an unevenly heating piece of crap. After 10 minutes I rotate the pan and check on it after another 10 minutes. Typically, it takes about 22-25 minutes total. If there is quite a bit of grease pooled on top of the slices I blot it up with a paper towel.

And what is bacon wiithout eggs? I love eggs cooked a lot of ways, but fried in probably my favorite style. Most people can fry an egg, but to make a perfectly cooked one requires basting, in my opinion. I love using olive oil as the basting fat, but if you have just cooked up a bunch of bacon that deliciously rendered piggy fat is hard to resist.

Basting eggs is incredibly simple. Heat up your fat in a good non-stick pan over medium heat. When it is good and hot, add your eggs. The eggs should start to sizzle right away. Grab a spoon and start splashing it over the top of the yolk until the top of the eggs starts to cook and the yolk takes on a pinkish color. Remove to the plate and season with a little salt and pepper.

Toast some good bread and you have a fantastic feast, right? Well, almost. Feasts require wine! Especially if this is your pre-church feast on a Sunday morning. Might as well fortify yourself before the preacher begs for your money and Mrs. Walker shames you into volunteering to deliver doilies to shut-ins.

But what works as a breakfast wine? First we want something that pairs well with the richness of egg yolks and bacon fat. That requires some acidity, which is why orange juice is such a popular accompaniment. As it is breakfast, and we don’t want to have to go right back to bed after we eat, low alcohol is probably a pretty good idea. And since having wine for breakfast is not an every day kind of thing, we want it to be fun.

One wine that fits the bill perfectly is Moscato di Asti. If you are not familiar with it, Moscato di Asti is a fruity, slightly sweet, fragrant, lightly sparkling wine.  It has enough acid and bubbles to cut through the rich flavors of the meal, and its floral notes and peach or apricot flavors compliment the food perfectly.

Add a glass of that to your perfectly cooked bacon and eggs and now you have a feast. Add a few glasses of it and you may not remember that you told Mrs. Walker that you would even help make the doilies for shut-ins. Sounds like a win/win situation to me.

  • http://twitter.com/diamondridge TJolley

    great story!

    • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

      Thanks! Glad that you liked it. :)

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  • http://www.pinotage.org/ Peter May

    I grill my bacon – It hink what in the US you call broil, i.e. heat above, bacon on a grill so fat drops into pan tray underneath and the bacon doesn't lie in its own fat.

    BTW, your photo belies your claim the your method ” turns out perfectly flat strips.” :)

    • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

      I can never seem to get the hang of broiling bacon. I always burn it. As for the photo, it isn't of the bacon that I cooked as I ate all of that before deciding to write this. :)

  • Katey

    Oh, now I know what I want for breakfast tomorrow!

    • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

      Did you get it?

      • Katey

        Made it over the weekend! Yummmmm.

        • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

          Glad to hear that you liked it! :)

  • http://aglassafterwork.blogspot.com/ Alleigh

    I'm wishing I had eggs and bacon at home! If I did, I know what I would be making for dinner. MMMMM….

    • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

      I hope you gave it a try! :)

  • karl98

    Amy,
    Loved your blog! I like the way you give solid advice mixed with a bit of humor. Keep it up.
    You probably already know this, but just in case, I'm throwing it out there for you and your other readers to consider:
    Your column said your oven is (what was the phrase you used?) oh, yeah…a piece of crap. I'm going to assume that at some point you will replace that oven with something better. Now, don't go spending silly money on stuff you really don't want or need, but DO spend a few extra buck on a combination oven. I don't use the convection feature on mine very often, but I ALWAYS use it to cook bacon. The fan allows the heat to be distributed evenly, and allows you to cook at a slightly lower heat while reducing the cooking time.
    I start by preheating the oven to 375. Lay the bacon out on a large baking sheets and put it in the preheated oven and turn on the blower (fan…on mine its labelled “speed bake”). Simply a matter of keeping an eye on it every few minutes. Seems to take about 6-8 minutes to cook thick cut bacon, less for regular. I blot it on paper towels when finished.

    • http://www.anotherwineblog.com WineWonkette

      Now see that is why I tell Joe he needs to put his picture by his posts. I usually sign the ones I write, but he doesn't. Most of the great cooking posts are his.

      We do have a crappy oven though. And Joe HATES to cook on electric — says you can't control the heat. But then he has fabulous pans, and I can't cook with them because I can't control the heat! One day when we move to Sonoma, we plan to get all decent kitchen equipment.

      • karl98

        I grew up cooking on gas, and nothing better. But I've learned to cook on electric out of necessity lo these last 35 years, and manage pretty well. Had the opportunity to cook at a friend's place on a gas stove again a few weeks ago and it all came back to me…damn I want a gas stove!

        • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

          Me too! Electric stoves are an abomination.

  • http://www.elbloggotorcido.com/ El Jefe

    I simply cannot abide any method other than frying on the stove in a good heavy pan. I love how the bacon curls up and creates chewy and crispy parts within the same strip – especially the chewy translucent white ends that are farther from the heat. Nothing better!

    • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

      You Amish folks are such traditionalists! Btw, which of your wines would pair best with bacon?

  • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

    Glad to hear that you liked it! :)

  • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

    Me too! Electric stoves are an abomination.

  • http://www.anotherwineblog.com jpower

    You Amish folks are such traditionalists! Btw, which of your wines would pair best with bacon?

  • http://www.anotherwineblog.com Houstonwino

    Glad to hear that you liked it! :)

  • http://www.anotherwineblog.com Houstonwino

    Me too! Electric stoves are an abomination.

  • http://www.anotherwineblog.com Houstonwino

    You Amish folks are such traditionalists! Btw, which of your wines would pair best with bacon?

  • http://www.largepot.net/information-news/kitchen-products-cooking-pots/ extra large cooking pots

    This is cool! And so interested! Are u have more posts like this? Plese tell me, thanks

  • http://www.largepot.net/information-news/kitchen-products-cooking-pots/ extra large cooking pots

    That’s the great article! I just pass ‘n read it, two
    thumbs up! ;)

  • http://www.largepot.net/information-news/kitchen-products-cooking-pots/ extra large cooking pots

    That’s the great article! I just pass ‘n read it, two
    thumbs up! ;)