Posts Tagged ‘bacon’

Sriracha + Bruegger’s bagel + Boo~Kies’s = Win

December 23, 2009
Sriracha + bruegger's bagel + Boo~Kies's = Win

Sriracha + bruegger's bagel + Boo~Kies's = Win

Dilemma:

  1. Bruegger’s Bagels – Doesn’t have “real” bacon or eggs.
  2. Boo~Kie’s – Doesn’t have bagels
  3. Sriracha Hot Sauce – Elevates sandwiches

The obvious solution is to combine a Bruegger’s bagel (wheat pictured) with an egg / bacon / cheese  from Boo~Kies (shown with optional hashbrown), with Sriracha (AKA Rooster) sauce.

This is a winning formula… all for around $3.50 (plus a bottle of Sriracha, $3.99 @ City Market).

Unfortunately this post is a little tardy, Boo~Kies’s cart appears to be done for the season, hit him up next spring.

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Baking (Dakin) Bacon – How-to

February 7, 2009
Dakin Farm - Bacon

Dakin Farm - Bacon

A couple readers have asked me if I cook. The answer is yes, especially when something is interesting to me; to help explain have a look at this comic.

In addition I feel somewhat obligated to recommend a cooking method for the Dakin bacon I proselytized. This Dakin product is thick cut bacon, so while the microwave oven can be ideal for “normal” cut bacon, both microwave energy and the fry pan proved ineffective for thicker cuts. So begins the first Whats4lunch how-to.

In addition to my own experiences Alton Brown recommends cooking bacon in the oven. Although he suggests using a rack, I found that to be unnecessary.

Bacon on foil-lined sheet pan

Bacon on foil-lined sheet pan

I like using a foil-lined edged pan for easy clean up. I pre-heated my small gas oven for 375F.

Bacon pre-flip

Bacon pre-flip

I like giving the bacon a flip half way through (I use a fork), around 12 minutes in. More important than the using the cooking time to decide when to flip, is to look for the golden outline of cooked fat on the foil, and slight foam coming off the bacon. The ends of the strips may be curling up a bit and the pork will be just slightly stiffer than when it’s raw. An advantage of Alton’s rack technique would be the elimination of the need for the flip, since the bacon would be suspended on the rack leaving convection cooking to cook both sides.

Done bacon in the oven

Done bacon in the oven

When the bacon is done it will be almost completely covered in foam as shown. This took about 22-24 minutes in my oven at 375F including time out for the flip. Also note the color change in the bacon and particles on the foil as telling clues to doneness. Finally the bacon should be fairly stiff, but not the level of complete rigidity of done pork belly. The bacon will cook just a little bit more while you’re transferring it to paper towels, where it will finish cooking.

bacon - final product

bacon - final product

One nice thing about cooking bacon in a sheet pan, is it doesn’t curl significantly, making it easy to work with for sandwiches and presents nicely on a plate.

If you get this method right, the fat will be crispy and meat chewy, and it will be amazing. The crispy chewy thing, seems to be a pattern for me.

Dakin Farms – “Dakin Bacon”

February 2, 2009

Dakin Farm in South Burlington, is home to the best bacon I’ve ever eaten. Colloquially I refer to it as “Dakin Bacon.”

Currently this bacon is on sale for $4.69 a lb (normally $6.49), during their “Smokehouse sale:”

Henry Street Deli Mart – Coffee & Breakfast sandwich

September 30, 2008
Henry Street Market - Burlington Vermont

Henry Street Market - Burlington Vermont

Henry Street Deli Mart is located coincidently on Henry Street in Burlington Vermont. Its close proximity to UVM makes this hidden gem a favorite of students. HSM used to known for not having anything on the shelves, it almost seemed like a cover operation for something else. They NOW have charcoal in the summer, a full deli featuring local McKenzie meat, American FlatbreadLa Panciata bakery bread, nice selection of beer and wine thanks to the new owner.

Henry Street Market - Small Coffee

Henry Street Market - Small Coffee

Excellent coffee is served fresh before 8AM from Vermont Artisan Coffee company, a “small” 12oz? is $1.25, a “large” 16oz is $1.50.

Since the geese are flying south:

Geese Flying South - Burlington Vermont (City Market Parking lot)

Geese Flying South - Burlington Vermont (City Market Parking lot)

The coffee makes a nice hand warmer, in addition to its good taste.

Henry Street Market - Breakfast Sandwich (bacon, egg, cheese)

Henry Street Market - Breakfast Sandwich (bacon, egg, cheese)

For $2.70 you get either Mckenzie Bacon, Mackenzie sausage, veggie sausage, with egg and your choice of cheese on a toasted English muffin. While this is a bit pedestrian, I sometimes crave a little bacon in the morning and don’t have time to do a little cooking in the morning, and this sandwich it cooked well. The bacon and muffin are crisp, the egg is not over cooked with a hint of butter, I like to order Swiss with mine.

Final note: HSM used to carry Dinky Donuts, but I guess DD flew south (like the geese) to Middlebury.

Martone’s Market and Cafe – “Billy” Sandwich

February 26, 2008

Martone’s is a little deli, “market and cafe” at the 5 corners in Essex Vermont.

Martone’s Market and Cafe - Essex Vermont
Martone’s Market and Cafe – Essex Vermont

Besides subs, Martone’s also has a nice selection of steaks; I think I’ll be picking some up once the snow melts to throw on the grill.

Martone’s - Billy Sandwich - (half, front)
Martone’s – Billy Sandwich – (half, front)

I like egg salad, something that I don’t bother to make for myself for some reason. Anyway, someone named “Billy” has similar taste to me, I ordered his namesake sandwich Egg salad and bacon, it kind of like being indecisive if you want breakfast or lunch, so you settle for a sandwich with breakfast elements. The egg salad yummy, green onions, and chunks of egg. The bacon is SO crispy, a nice contrast to the smooth egg salad. Finally I added sprouts and tomato to the freshly baked wheat bread. 

Take note:  If this is your first time at Martone’s I would recommend ordering a small sandwich, unless you would like some leftovers. Martone’s is notorious for their piled-high sandwiches. Here is the back side of my half sandwich:

Martone’s - Billy Sandwich - (half, back)
Martone’s – Billy Sandwich – (half, back)

The half Billy was $7.25 with tax, I’ll be back to when I need my egg-salad fix.

Jazzman’s Cafe @ Champlain College – “Ham and Brie Sandwich”, “Potato and Bacon Soup”, “Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookie”

January 15, 2008

I was on Champlain College‘s beautiful campus today, so I decided to get some lunch there.

William R. Hauke Family Campus Center - Champlain College
William R. Hauke Family Campus Center – Champlain College

From Maple Street in Burlington Vermont, Jazzman’s Cafe is  just through the pictured door. Jazzman’s cafe is actually a chain, and is only one of Champlain’s dining options. Previously in the same location there was a student run cafe, which I actually prefer, but Jazzman’s has surprisingly decent food for a chain.

Jazzman’s Cafe - Ham and Brie Sandwich
Jazzman’s Cafe – Ham and Brie Sandwich

The counter person popped the sandwich in a panini press with good results. The brie was warm and gooey, the ham was good quality, and the Dijon mustard was an excellent choice. This is a ham and cheese with a french accent.

Jazzman’s Cafe - Potato Bacon Soup (cup)
Jazzman’s Cafe – Potato Bacon Soup (cup)

I was waffling on getting this soup, as I already had pork in my sandwich, but the cook up-sold me into a cup of this soup. The soup was nice and thick, there were chunks of potatoes, carrots, celery, and small bits of bacon. The soup appropriately hearty on this chilly day, but could have used a little more bacon.

Jazzman’s Cafe - Peanut Butter Chocolate chip cookie
Jazzman’s Cafe – Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie

A few great things about this cookie:

  1. Tons of peanut butter flavor – A good peanut butter cookie will likely be crispy on at least the outside. This is probably due to the peanut oil in the peanut butter, this cookie managed to stay soft in the middle.
  2. Peanuts!– I actually prefer some chopped peanuts inside the dough, but the result was fine.
  3. Dark chocolate in the icing – milk chocolate would have pushed this cookie into the “too sweet” range, just like “peanut butter” cookies, that don’t have enough peanut butter in them. The chocolate chips were also dark, or maybe semi-sweet.

I think the soup was $2.50, the cookie $1.50, and the sandwich $5 (everything was under $10 with tax), Jazzman’s Cafe is an inexpensive lunch option.

Sneakers, “Apple & Cheddar Stuffed French Toast”

January 2, 2008

Last Sunday I was back to Sneakers in Winooski Vermont for breakfast / brunch. This time, I was intrigued my one of their specials:

Sneakers - Apple Chedder Stuffed French toast
Sneakers – Apple Cheddar Stuffed French toast, cranberry compote, scoop of vanilla ice-cream on top, side of eggs and bacon.

Bam! Sneakers has awesomely creative and tasty specials, I present these french toast as evidence. The cheddar wasn’t very noticeable, so the effect was something like french toast apple pie a la mode. The contrast in temperatures was nice. Also contrasting were the saltiness, of the toast (likely the cheddar), crispness of the toast, and the creaminess of the ice-cream. The cranberry compote served to bring a little acid into the mix, and blended well with the sweetness of the apples and ice-cream.

The eggs were fine (I forgot to order mine with cheese), and the bacon (4 pieces) was awesome, Sneakers consistently has some of the best bacon around (crispy but not dry). The coffee was the usual average, which is disappointing considering Blue Star Cafe is a couple doors down.

The special was a steal at $8.95 (it may have included coffee also).

Mirabelles, “Mushroom, Roasted Red Pepper, Goat Cheese, Bacon Panini” & “Coconut Macaroon”

December 4, 2007

Mirabelles is a cafe / bakery on main st in Burlington Vermont. I was first introduced to them via City Market in Burlington, which carries some of their deserts. Their baked goods are outstanding, but they also do lunch / breakfast.

Mushroom, Roasted Red Pepper, Goat Cheese and Bacon Panini
Mushroom, Roasted Red Pepper, Goat Cheese and Bacon Panini, with complimentary garden salad.

It’s nice to get something this visually interesting for lunch. The panini is nice and crispy, the button mushrooms are sliced nice and thin so they don’t slide out of the sandwich, the roasted red peppers are sweet and just slightly bitter. The cheese was nice and creamy, and the smoky bacon was a delicious surprise. I think this may be local Vermont Smoke and Cure bacon. Mirabelles managed to get the bacon crispy with is a challenge I’ve had with this thicker-cut bacon.

The complimentary salad was also a surprise, beet juliennes, half peeled cucumber, and a mix of romaine and boston lettuce, added to the more pedestrian red pepper / carrot juliennes. The balsamic dressing had a nice herby depth to it.

Mirabelles, Coconut Macaroon
Don’t skip desert at Mirabelles, don’t do it! This coconut macaroon is probably the best I’ve every had. Not too sweet and the coconut really comes through in texture and taste. The outside it slightly crispy, and the inside is slightly chewy.. awesome.

Panini and salad was $8.50, Coconut macaroon was $.75, I’ll be back to try more sandwich and bakery items.