There is a farm not far from where we live that raises heirloom beef, pork and poultry, but because we’re complete losers, we’ve been too chicken to drive up to the main office there to actually buy stuff from them. We’ve been hemming and hawing for years about it, and finally this week, while on a mission to buy a Boston butt for pork tacos, Boomer decided to stop in and check them out. Naturally, they didn’t have Boston butt, but they did have bacon ends, and we can’t ever say no to bacon. So Boomer left with a pound of really fatty-looking chunks of slab bacon and a dozen eggs, just to give them a try.
Pookie was working on Saturday, so it gave us a great opportunity to have a bacon scramble, since Pookie hates eggs. I diced up a bit of the slab ends, cooked them up, scrambled them into the eggs, and then proceeded to fall deeply and irrevocably in love. The eggs were not discernibly better than the organic ones from my bobo grocery store, but the bacon? “Sublime” does not begin to do justice to it. It was sweet, buttery, and rich without any of the heavy, salty, overwhelmingly smoky baconness I’m used to. There was definitely a smokiness to it, but it was a light, fresh woodsmoke kind of flavor, like the taste equivalent of when you get a whiff of a neighbor’s chimney smoke on a clear winter day. I already held bacon near the top of my list of Greatest Foodstuffs On Earth, but this iteration of it may very well put it over the top.
I hadn’t put together any concrete plans for what I was going to make for dinner that night, other than that it was going to be pasta, as Saturday is our traditional pasta night. After licking my plate clean upon gobbling up all of my bacon scramble, I decided I had to make something with more of the bacon in it.
I started out by thinly slicing about five small onions, then caramelized them. Then I removed them from the pan and tossed in my diced bacon. The amazing thing about this bacon is that, despite being just a bunch of fatty slab ends, when rendered it gave up very little grease. I never had to pour off any excess, or deal with nasty splattering. It was just delicious, delicious bacony goodness.
Once the bacon was browned, I returned the onions to the pan, and then stirred in about four whole canned tomatoes which I’d finely chopped. I let the whole thing simmer until the tomatoes had broken down and then I added some chopped flat-leaf parsley (I was surprised to discover I still had some frozen from our garden’s final harvest last Fall). With a nice sprinkling of sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste, it was good to go. And because I’d been drinking, I took a bunch of pictures.
We had this tossed with linguine fini and parmesan cheese, and I have to say, it was simply delicious.