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What is 'canadian bacon' in the UK? [moved from the UK/Ireland board]

I've just started eating meat again and am drooling for some Canadian Bacon. But what is it called?

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  1. You may need one of our American members to help here. I've never eaten Canadian Bacon, although I have eaten bacon in Canada, if you see what I mean. Is Canadian Bacon from Canada?

    IIRC, they have two types. One is called "peameal bacon" and has a coating. We don't have that here. The other is just "bacon", shaped like a pork chop - which we'd call "back bacon" - not strips like in America which we'd call "streaky bacon".

    3 Replies
    1. re: Harters

      What then is Streaky Bacon? Larger rectangular pieces with more fat marbling?

      1. re: Gio

        "Streaky" is about the same length as "back", and about 2 or 3 centimetres wide and, yes, it's rectangular with much more fat .

        There is also a bacon cut which starts with "back" and then has a very long tail of "streaky" (rather than cutting it into two). We call that "middle".

      1. re: JoanN

        OMG JoanN. I'm an information fiend.... what a fabulous site that is!! Surprising I haven't found it before this. Thank you!

      2. It seems to me that regular bacon in the UK, is what I would call 'Canadian' bacon as it's known in the U.S. It's wide pieces as opposed to the thin, 'streaky' bacon we eat in the States. I think what you mean relizabeth is what Americans put on in eggs benedict. I feel born again as I found Oscar Meyer bacon in a local Sainsbury's. OK.. it's made in Spain, but the package and taste is the same. :-)

        1. In the US, regular bacon is made from the belly, so is about half (or more) fat, cured and smoked. Canadian bacon is made from the loin, so is quite lean. It is more like our ham than our bacon.


          1. according to the wisegeek site, US "Canadian bacon" is called "back bacon" in the UK.


            the history of canadian bacon: http://www.realcanadianbacon.com/pork...

            6 Replies
            1. re: alkapal

              Which is what it is called in Canada as well.

              1. re: PaulV

                Yep- though if you're a hapless American immigrant and you refer to it as "Canadian Bacon," everybody know what you mean.

                I've also seen back bacon referred to as plain old "bacon," but maybe that's a western Canada thing.

                1. re: John Manzo

                  Not just western Canada, John. I reckon in the UK most people would say "bacon" when they refer to "back bacon". Makes sense as that's what most bacon is. It'd only get clarified to specify "streaky" or "middle".

                  1. re: Harters

                    if you have to buy bacon from a UK supermarket, canadian or otherwise, J Sainsbury TTD outdoor reared is the only mainstream bacon i have found which is worth consuming. the rest is pants.

                    1. re: pecandanish

                      Although I recently had cause to complain to Sainsbury about it. The packaging claims "no white spots", as you'd expect froma premium product. There were. Lots.

                      I got ten quid added to my Nectar points which was swift and appropriate compensation.

                      1. re: Harters

                        if its true dry cure, there should be no injected brine run off during cooking and very little shrinkage.

                        unless it was taken out of cure early which is very orr form indeed.

            2. There are two types of Canadian bacon, as the links point out.
              1) U.S. style Canadian bacon is boneless pork tenderloin, brined and smoked.

              2) Canadian peameal bacon is boneless pork strip loin, sweet-brine cured, and rolled in corn meal. It is not smoked, and tends to be juicier.
              The classic peameal bacon sandwich is served at the St. Lawrence market, Toronto.

              1. This is what I dont understand. I'm from the UK and I love 'our' type of bacon (Canadian Bacon). But everywhere I travel abroad, you never see the same cut of pork and I really dont understand why? More so in the states, I've been to many states east and west and its nowhere to be seen, have Americans tried it and hated it thus going back to the streaky stuff; or have they just never tried it before?

                Streaky bacon over here is almost never used as part of a cooked breakfast, and mainly to add flavour to main courses, but in the states it seems to be the main food to have for breakfasts which is far more unhealthy?

                1 Reply
                1. re: matrix2021

                  Everybody I know calls what Americans call Canadian bacon peameal bacon, but in the Kingdom of UK it is likely called "Colony Bacon" :)