“When was it that the country went crazy for bacon?” Michele Anna Jordan asks in Vinaigrettes and Other Dressings. “I think it was about the time, or just after, my book celebrating the bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich—The BLT Cookbook (William Morrow, 2003)—was published, in late spring 2003. Right about the same time, a man founded the first Bacon-of-the-Month Club, and soon you could find everything from bacon lip gloss and bacon-flavored vodka to Baconnaise, a flavored mayonnaise that actually contains no pork, let alone any bacon of any kind.
I’ve had chocolate-coated bacon lollipops, bacon ice cream, candied bacon, and even bacon cupcakes. Yet have we tired of bacon? No. Even many vegetarians find it irresistible. Shortly after appearing on the Today show to promote the book, I received an email from a vegetarian declaring her love for the stuff. Bacon is not meat, she said; bacon is fat, which in her mind was a good thing (I agree). Strict vegetarians may want to skip over this recipe, though, as there is no real substitute for bacon.”
The Harvard Common Press
- 1 shallot, minced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- Kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 3 bacon slices, cut in half crosswise
- 4 to 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- Black pepper in a mill
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
- Put the shallot and garlic in a small bowl, season with salt, and add the vinegar. Set aside.
- In a medium sauté pan, cook the bacon over medium heat until it is completely crisp. Transfer to paper towels or a brown paper bag to drain.
- Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat from the pan, return the pan to low heat, and add the vinegar mixture. Simmer for about 1 minute. Add 4 tablespoons of the olive oil and the maple syrup and heat through. Stir, season generously with black pepper, then taste and correct for salt, oil, and acid. Heat through again, remove from the heat, and add the Italian parsley.
- Crumble the bacon and add it to the finished vinaigrette. Use immediately, while the vinaigrette is hot.