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Thursday
Oct262017

Micromaster the bacon sandwich- or is it roll?

The mighty and ubiquitous bacon sarnie is something ripe for micromastery. As a lover if not a connoisseur of this delicacy I have every motive to pursue greatness in its construction. And so another delicious micromastery takes place. This is very often my favourite place to be- right at the beginning when the (micro)obsession takes hold. I'm relishing just experimenting right now using what I know/have learned plus one piece of chef's advice from ten years ago. On such slim beginnings any micromastery can grow. Reading and yioutubing too soon spoils things. As Micromaster Alexander Hopkins taught me- sometimes you just have to make a stab at a thing first THEN read the manual/book/last word on the subject...

So, what I know for sure: a) the bacon must be dry cured, or, if wet cured, must have a minimum of that white mucus-like sludge that boils out of crap bacon. The bacon should not be streaky (at least that is my current belief) - it should be back-bacon and medium thick. to thin and crispy and its all frying that you taste, too thick and chewy and its...too thick and chewy. Sourcing eco-friendly super delicious hand reared and fettled bacon is probably my next objective but right now I'm making do with Co-op's finest...b) (yes still going with this list) the bread is not super important. Processed white bread is just about OK except the bacon fat can melt through it. A too-thick and crispy bun is useless- all you taste is bread. Lovely homemade bread likewise- it usually has too much character....and c) don't add mushrooms.

I added a lot of mushrooms on the first experiment today. Watery and mushroomy flavoured bacon sarnie- NO! Bacon and mushroom and cheese toppings have their place- but not in the classic bacon sandwich. Come to think of it, the bacon sarnie is a true icon of venacular cookery, overlooked by every tradition bar that of the greasy spoon. Truly below the radar, it is probably just waiting to become elevated like craft beer and gourmet coffee.

I digress. What kind of oil? I suspect dripping but I make do with olive oil. The key thing is to get the bacon crispy brown in places but not dried out in the middle. This is probably the rub/pat barrier. Should one 'prime' the bun with a quick fried-bread style soak/fry in the hot pan. Not sure, probably not. Prime the sandwich with a smidgin of butter- that works too. The only sauce is Lea and Perrins- can't really over do this either. Brown sauce and ketchup overwhelm the bacon too much.

In summary- so far the perfect bacon sandwich is in an oridnary bun, not too thick and certainly not very 'crusty'. The bacon is back-bacon and well fried (not grilled). The sauce is Lea and Perrins. Eat when hot.

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