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How do you prefer your "B" in your BLT?

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Do you like it soft and rubbery (maybe "chewy" is probably or more apt description); or do you prefer it charred and crispy?

I prefer the latter.

You?

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  1. Crisp but not charred. Just beautifully browned.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Candy

      Agreed. It should be crisp enough to break in one bite without having to gnaw on it, but it definitely shouldn't shatter at your first bite. Brown, not black.

      1. re: Candy

        I'm with you. Nicely browned, and straight as an arrow. I only like the soft, fatty pieces with fried eggs- though even then I prefer them crisp.
        My mother ALWAYS either burned it, or served it rubbery. To this day, whenever I cook bacon for her, she asks me what kinds it is, and then says that it cooks up nicely! DOn't have the heart to tell her that she, too, can get bacon to cook that way if she cooks it slowly. But i try to be a good daughter and let it go!

        1. re: Candy

          Yep, crisp (haven't had it charred but would probably like that too)...I definitely look for a crunch sensation when biting into a BLT.

        2. For a classic BLT on toasted sliced bread, I think the bacon has to be crisp or the sandwich will fall apart at the first bite.

          If you prefer your bacon chewy, better to use a baguette.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            I prefer chewy and, yep, I use baguette with mayo, whole-grain mustard, bib lettuce, and some heirloom tomato slices at least for two more weeks until my garden is all done and I can't get nice bradywines anymore.

          2. I like my bacon on a BLT to be crisp (as aptly described above) with the fat having a tiny, tiny bit of chewy (spring)...it's what keeps the bacon from shattering and of course has flavor. If you totally render the fat from the bacon, that's when it shatters on contact. It's a fine balance. That said...hey it's bacon and if it's browned, I'll eat it.

            1. Ah... a true American original.
              I don't think the bacon has to be ultra-crispy--the lettuce will do that job. It should have a residual meaty tenderness so as to play off the contrasting textures of the two vegetables. Yum!

              1. Another one for crisp, but also THICK.

                1. Crispy, just before it can be considered burnt.

                  BLT's are one of the few things that I must eat on white bread - but it has to be toasted to keep up with the mayo without getting gummy.

                  1. Just a side note-
                    for some reason, in my family the BLT was the sandwich of choice for our road trips. Sandwich not assembled until it was time to eat. We would cook the bacon, and have separate containers for the bacon and lettuce . We would lightly toast the bread, and pack in tin foil. A small bottle of Hellmans in the cooler, and we were good to go. I still like to make these on a long road trip.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: macca

                      While not homemade, I find on the road BLTs are a pretty safe bet regardless where you happen to be. Yes the tomato can be bad but if you have toast, lettuce and bacon you're 3/4 there. Of course done properly, it's hard to beat.

                      1. re: ML8000

                        For the roadies, something to consider ...

                        I've had BLTd where the "T" was a tomato relish. Very good alternative to the traditional sliced T and probably travels better too.

                        1. re: ipsedixit

                          Try a BLT with a fried green tomato as the "T" Nice for a little variety.

                          1. re: ESNY

                            Fried green toms don't travel well. By the time you stopped to make that snack, they'd be soggy and unappealing.

                            I actually like the tapanade idea... I have some thick, applewood smoked, slab just waiting for me to cook it up tonight. Zebra heirlooms and smoked bacon on Russian Peasant. "Mmm-Mmm, good."

                    2. I like my bacon crispy for the BLT.

                      Side note: A friend of mine used to get BLTs at this diner and she would ask for the bacon to be extra crispy. It was really good until we realized that they were putting her bacon in the deep fryer and thats what was making it so crispy. Deep fried bacon...

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: lbs

                        ~Deep fried bacon... ~

                        Heaven!!

                        As a kid we used to make bacon waffles by laying strips of bacon on the waffle iron and then pouring the batter on top. Bacon would cook inside the waffle. Don't think I could eat them today but as memories serves they were soooooooo good!!

                        1. re: foodieX2

                          Ahh, my parents would make me bacon inside pancakes when I was little (lay pieces of bacon in the pancake right after it went on the griddle). Those were fantastic.

                        2. re: lbs

                          Haha, Saveur a year or so ago had a recipe on TEMPURA BACON. Genius.

                        3. I like my bacon in a blt cooked medium.

                          1. I'm in the minority -- I don't like crisp bacon.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Das Ubergeek

                              I agree with you; I don't like crisp bacon either (hate picking up the little pieces that break off if the bacon is crisp).

                            2. Chewy! To me it has more flavor.

                              1. I like it lean, but cooked. It shouldn't snap, but mustn't get pulled out of the sandwhich on your first bite either. A good BLT is hard to find. I usually just make my own. For the "gourmet" stuff, I'll go out.

                                TT

                                1. Crispy so it breaks easily when you bite into it, but not so it shatters. I hate having to gnaw on the piece of bacon to separate it from the rest of the sandwich (and I absolutely detest it when the slice pulls out of the sandwich!)

                                  1. Thick-cut, applewood smoked, fried and chewy.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: The Ranger

                                      me too. thickly sliced bacon with lots of mayo and juicy ripe tomatoes. on thick, homestyle white bread.

                                    2. Really crispy on sandwiches & soft, fatty pieces w/ breakfast foods.

                                      1. Bacon that's Bakin' are my kind of Beggin' strips.

                                        A slow oven for 30-40 minutes yields a flat strip, perfectly brown and rendered, with such slow and steady Maillard reactions that it almost quacks like a duck.

                                        275 oven; slotted rack draining over broiler pan. My broiler pan, when loaded to the edges, holds 12-13 oz of thin sliced, leaving a few unused strips for other diced bacon applications.

                                        Turn and rotate strips from center to edge of pan 2-3 times. They will shrink and this will become easier. Bring each strip off to paper when it is done during the last 10 minutes. Paying attention to each strip yields rewards.

                                        Advantages:

                                        -Slow heat with turning means no overdone or underdone spots.

                                        -Flat pieces result rather than wavy edged, thus less crumbling when pressure is applied on BLT sandwich.

                                        -Cheap store-brand bacon can move up a notch in social status; Good bacon becomes Divine. I have not tried Great Bacon as I fear a Cosmic Zap for overindulgence.

                                        -The "break to the tooth" is awesome; no jagged breaks.

                                        -Yields a great fat for saving: rendered below smoke point, and free of charred/gluey protein bits that result from pan frying; all that good stuff stays in the strip.

                                        -Freezes beautifully. Future BLT's on demand or, better yet, on impulse.

                                        1. Just beyond strngy and waaaay this side of crisp is perfect. It should have a firm consistency, but the fat needs to be cooked all the way through.

                                          1. I've always loved BLT's, but in my youth I enjoyed the "chewy" bacon. Now I adore the crispy bacon in a good BLT. The flavor is just more intense. When it's "chewy" the fat gets in the way of the flavor.

                                            I prefer to cook my bacon in the oven on a rack (over a sheet pan). It's the easiest and you get the crispiest bacon.

                                            1. Now that our tomatoes are picked fresh from the garden, we like another bacon sandwich. Crusty Italian bread, sliced tomatoes, topped with cheese, and under the broiler until the cheese is melted and a bit blackened. Delicious. A nice way to enjoy garden tomatoes.

                                              1. During my high school days (private, all girls, and catholic...ugh)we weren't afraid to eat since there were no boys watching ........so the chef we had used to make the "special" for us. It was a traditional BLT, BUT on a poppy roll broiled in the oven with American cheese.............so yummy.

                                                Wow, that was a flashback.