Bacon Crackers: Best Delivery System Ever!


Recently I came across a bacon recipe online HERE that I absolutely HAD to try!

Bacon is one of the reasons I am not vegetarian. *wink*

I have made this recipe a couple times now and enough people have asked me for the recipe that I have decided to write out what I do to make them on here, along with additional suggestions based on my experience.

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First up, you need a wire rack of some kind.  You are going to have “drip-age” and it’s better to have it drip away from the crackers ;)
I used two cooling racks placed on top of a cookie sheet which I lined with foil.  Allowed for easy clean up!

Pre-heat the oven to 350.

Next, you need crackers.  I have used Toppables and they stand up quite well to the bacon and the baking.

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Although they have this interested way of curling up! :)

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Place the crackers on the wire rack and then prep your bacon.  Cut it into squares that fit on top of each cracker avoiding any oversized pieces that hang over the edges.

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NOTE #1: I have made these with cheaper bacon from the grocery store, as well as with high quality naturally fed bacon from a local meat counter.  The cheaper bacon worked out better.  It was saltier and you need that salt to cut through the sweet you are about to add.  Also, thinner cut bacon is better.

Third, sprinkle each piece of bacon with a good amount of brown sugar.

Fourth, sprinkle each piece with a BIT of cayenne pepper.

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Bake them for 10 minutes, turn them and bake for another 10 minutes.  I found I needed another 5-10 minutes beyond that so you will want to watch them after the first 20 minutes (Total baking time: 20-30 minutes)

Note #2: They don’t seem to keep well, although this may be due to the type of crackers that I used.  I found that they were somewhat soggy on the following day.  So, best eaten soon after creation! :)

 


Beans & Pasta: a vegetarian soup to warm you on the coldest night


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Earlier in February, B and I went to visit his mother near Ottawa, ON.  February was a brutal month for snow and cold, as I’m sure many of you remember.

But one thing can make all that melt away….a piping hot bowl of home-made soup!

She had made a large pot of this soup and it was so delicious that I kept going back for more.

Not to mention…garnished with Parmesan cheese?  Yep, I’m there!  (This may be something to leave out if you’re going for vegetarian friendly)

I have since made it as well and it keeps getting better!  It’s also a nice recipe for experimenting as it leaves room for additions.

So, here we go:

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2-3 carrots, diced
2-3 parsnips, diced
2 stalks of celery, chopped
1 heaping tsp of diced garlic (I love garlic!  You may wish to adjust this)
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried thyme
pepper, I used quite a bit as I wanted a peppery taste
dried chili flakes, added just a few for a bit of bite
1 can diced tomatoes
6-8 cups broth (I used chicken but vegetable would work here too…I also upped the broth closer to 8 cups as I added more pasta and beans than originally called for)
2 cups shredded cabbage
1 can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can mixed beans, drained and rinsed (again, these two cans of beans can be whatever type of legume you wish to add)
1/2 cup pasta, I used what we decided to call “forearm” pasta….as in, not the elbow shape but the tiny tubes without the bend
grated Parmesan cheese

Heat oil over medium heat.  Add onion, carrots and parsnips.  Cook until soft (5 mins).
Stir in garlic, basil, thyme, pepper and a few chill flakes if you wish.
Add tomatoes and broth.  Bring to a boil and then simmer for 15 mins.
Add cabbage, beans and pasta.  Bring just to a boil again and let simmer for 5-10 until pasta is tender.

Stir in pepper and salt to taste.

Serve topped with grated parmesan cheese!


Tenderloin + Crock Pot … Melt in your mouth goodness!


Last night I had some friends over and we decided to do a bit of a potluck.  Earlier in the week, I had purchased a package of two pork tenderloins so I figured I would make some type of meat dish for everyone.

I had a lot to do around the house to prepare for the party so I didn’t want anything too cumbersome.  I wanted to make something quick and easy that wouldn’t require a lot of attention.

Bring in the Crock Pot!

I put the two tenderloins in my crock pot, covered them with a marinade and let them cook on low for about 5 hrs or so.  By the time we went to remove them, they were fall-apart-melt-in-your-mouth delicious!

Delicious Tenderloin

Delicious Tenderloin

So, I put them in the crock pot and added the following:

  • 1 package of onion soup mix (next time I might consider coming up with a mix of spices that I like instead…but I was in a hurry!)
  • 3/4 – 1 cup red wine
  • 1 cup of water
  • pepper
  • garlic, quite a lot of it ;) diced and laid on top of the tenderloins
  • dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce

Cooked it on low for about 5 hours and it was fantastic!

It creates an amazing sauce for gravy in the end so we whisked up the juices and added some cornstarch.

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I suppose in hindsight, the one thing I would change is the onion soup mix…if for no other reason than trying to reduce the sodium content.  My soy sauce was low in salt but the resulting dish was *almost* too salty….

Almost.

But instead ended up on this side of delicious!


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