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Ideas for A Bacon-centric Meal?

I offered to cook a meal for a friend's birthday, and when asked what he wanted he simply replied, "bacon."

Not wanting to disappoint, I'm trying to think of some ideas to make a bacon centered meal. Mainly I want a bacony main dish and a side or too that will work well, but an appetizer of some sort would help too. If a wine is known that would match well, all the better. Desert is seperte from the bacon concepts, and as this is a birthday meal, I need an awesome cake idea.

I was first considering coq a vin, but didn't know if I could find a recipe that really brings out the lardons. I also considered a bacon wrapped/stuffed fowl of some sort, but would prefer that to only be a last resort, preferring something more creative. Additionally, this dish would have to be passable by teenager palates and attitudes, and be able to be made for 8 without too much additional hassle.

I did find the Braised Red Cabbage with Bacon recipe on this site to be very intriguing as a solid side dish, and the Pancetta and Hominy Polenta looks intriguing, assuming that I can get the kids to handle the polenta.

Any help at all is much appreciated, and I am under a bit of a time limit (this Saturday), so thank you.

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  1. Off the top of my sleepy head: App, scallops wrapped w/ bacon; main, rouladen stuffed w/ bacon; salad w/Penn Dutch hot bacon dressing, green beans w/ bacon bits, pasta carbonara and double the bacon; dessert, bacon cheese cake?! Or a gourmet bacon sampler w/ cheese fruit and port. Sounds like what one of my adult kids would like. Don't forget the heart meds.

    1. I love bacon!

      Search notmartha.org for bacon cups. Yes, they are what they sound like. You can use them to hold salad.

      Sweet-and-spicy bacon from Gourmet, recipe also below. Everyone I make this for asks for extra to take home. Would make an excellent nibble to start off the meal. OR - bacon-wrapped parmesan-stuffed dates (stuff date with piece of parm, wrap in bacon, and bake). So easy, so good.
      http://orangette.blogspot.com/2006/09...

      Bacon dessert idea: candied bacon ice cream. I haven't tried it yet, but someday soon...
      http://www.davidlebovitz.com/archives...

      1. For a main course, only two things pop to mind for me, beyond the obvious "bacon and eggs." First is, of course, spaghetti carbonara. When made right, it as an embarasssment of bacon richness. You can use either pancetta or plain old bacon bacon. The other dish is quiche Loiraine, with bacon, not ham, and as much bacon as you like. While both bouef Buirguignon and coq au vin have "bacon" in them, it isn't the star of either dish.

        For a first course, there is practically no limit to the things you can wrap in bacon and either fry, broil or roast until crisp. Artichoke hearts, brussel sprouts, cherry or grape tomatoes, shrimp, lobster, octopus, oysters, clams, steak, chicken cubes... Yup. Endless!

        If the carbonerra sounds interesting, sometimes simplicity is elegance, so I wouldn't worry about side dishes. Maybe a Caesar salad, and if you like, you can add some crumbled crisp bacon to it, but plain would underscore the richness of the carbonara.

        1. Don't doubt that you can find a use for bacon even in desserts. Vosges makes a very popular bacon chocolate bar that you can use to make a chocolate birthday cake. Or if you want to be more original, you could always make your own chocolate cake with bacon brittle.

          3 Replies
          1. re: JungMann

            I've always wanted to try a little bacon in the elvis cake, actually... And, no doubt about it, the Elvis Cake is awesome.

            There are a lot of posts on the Vosges chocolate if you're curious about it--personally, I didn't find it bacon-y enough, though, it was fun as a novelty.

            Edit: here's a link to the "bacon" subdiscussion of the Elvis Cake thread... http://www.chowhound.com/topics/43818...

            ~TDQ

            1. re: The Dairy Queen

              Agree that the Vosges chocolate isn't bacony enough. There was a post awhile back that linked toa blog that made Bacon Chocolate Chip cookies that i've always wanted to try. Also recalled that a commenter on that blog mentioned doing sugar cookies and adding bacon to it.

              For bacon centric meal, here are some suggestions:

              Frisee salad aux lardons

              Spaghetti Carbonara (guanciale would be best in this applications, second best would be pancetta but high quality bacon would work).

              An Elvis - peanut butter, bacon, banana and honey sandwich that is buttered and fried like grilled cheese.

              Pasta with an overeasy egg and sauteed bacon. Crisp up some bacon, then using the fat, fry an egg in it till barely set and then plate on top of cooked pasta.

              Also, do an internet search for a Bacon Cheese BaconBurger if you want to go all out. Haven't had the guts to try it...

              1. re: The Dairy Queen

                speaking of elvis, for a fun lower brow dessert, make mini/petit four elvis sandwiches w/ pb, bacon, and banana, then fry and serve w/ a thinned jam puree.

            2. It might be a little low-brow, but always a hit at my parties:

              Cook bacon strips slightly ( I usually do this in the oven)
              wrap around large water chestnuts.
              skewer with a toothpick.
              add a small fresh pineapple chunk.
              Cook in the oven until the bacon is at desired doneness.
              eaten all at once, a quick easy delicious appetizer.

              1 Reply
              1. re: kmills9408

                I like the bacon around water chestnut thing but I like to smear peanut butter on top when it's hot and bubbly. :)