April 16th, 2008
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NOTE: Before anyone cries foul: Like an idiot, I didn't google to see if this had been done until after I had taken photos and written half the article. So, when you're done here, also check out Nosheteria - from just over a year ago. I think mine has better photos, though. And a dog.
So I've noticed a lot of theWAREHOUSE articles have been rather food related lately, haven't they? Yes, they have. Don't worry, the lamps are almost done. Really. I mean, maybe another month worth of weekends...but almost. Anyone want to buy me a high powered, table mounting belt sander? Anyway in the meantime we have today's article: Bacon Popcorn! It's only "pco" away from Bacon Porn.
I got some real popcorn for my wife for Christmas. Not the stuff you do in the microwave. This is the real kernels you can either pop in an air popper or in a skillet. The flavor is much better and it only takes a little longer - plus it's probably healthier for you. Well we'll be taking care of that last part today. Because, you see, when you pop the popcorn in a skillet, you use "1-3 tablespoons of oil" put down first. But it doesn't specify what kind. We've been using vegetable oil. I thought to myself the other day that since it doesn't really specify, the popcorn must not be really picky. If any kind of oil works, why not grease? Why not...bacon grease?
Pardon the awful colors in the first picture. It originally turned out pretty dark and orangey, so I think this is a little better. Bad Carl, bad! Anyway, I like that the hormel logo is on an upside down Bart Simpson head.
I guess that each strip of bacon puts out about 3/4tbsp of grease, so even just using three strips of bacon would have fit within the instructions' recommended 1-3 of oil just fine, but I didn't know if it might take extra. Plus, you know, it's bacon. So. I wanted more bacon. Bacon. Bacon. Bacon.
After a few minutes I started to get scared. Was the awesomeness of my pork strips choking out those poor delicate kernels? But finally I heard the pitter-patter of little pig-soaked poppings!
I think perhaps if anything there might have been too much grease, choking out and coating the kernels a little too thickly. The popcorn did seem to not pop as fully and fluffily as with the other oils. On the other hand, it might have been because I had to occasionally open the lid to move the bacon to keep it from burning. Of course, the popcorn doesn't really care about being under a lid - it's just to keep it contained.
Bacon popcorn! How did it taste? I'm a little disappointed to say that it only took on a very mild flavor of bacon from the grease. Of course it was nice that there were full strips of bacon to crumble up with it right there, so that enhanced it a bunch and brought it up to moderate. This could be a perfect place to use the recently created bacon salt.
That's our dog in the background of that last photo. You can bet your sweet potato she want some bacon. Who doesn't? Even vegans want bacon.
All in all a very worthy experiment that needs a bit of enhancement. A handful of diced jalapenos, a bit of shredded cheese, and the aforementioned bacon salt and this could be perfect nacho cheddar bacon popcorn.