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Posts from the ‘Bacon’ Category

The Bacon Craze.. How Did This Happen?

It’s been called a meat condiment, meat candy, people have described themselves as having a bacon tooth. It seems like nowadays everywhere you go, you find bacon. Bacon infused vodka, bacon cupcakes, bacon wrapped anything under the sun… What can’t you find that isn’t bacon flavored? Bacon has become a national craze that has got even vegetarians admitting they find it hard to resist bacon. In an extremely and increasingly health conscious public and in a time when soda bans and trans fats bans are being legislated, why is bacon consumption in the United States growing larger than ever before? Well, to be honest, butchers and meat processors are really left scratching our heads here. Read more

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Nitrites: What’s the REAL Story?

Nitrites are something that have been in the news off and on since the 1980’s. One news story tells you they cause cancer, the next one tells you the health benefits of nitrites. There have even been billboards trying to prey on the fear that hot dogs are just as bad as smoking cigarettes. hot-dog-billboard-cancer-project-300x169Some products claim to be “nitrite free” but are they really nitrite free…? There’s so much information out there, what’s the real story? Before we get down to the real story, let’s cover what a nitrite is and how it ended up in our beloved cured meats like hot dogs and bacon.  Read more

Bacon, Cottage Bacon, Canadian Bacon: What’s the Difference?

So we all know that bacon makes everything better…. And if you don’t, we’ll, you’re missing out on life. If you’re anything of a bacon lover I’m sure you have heard of cottage bacon and Canadian bacon. So what’s the difference!? Well I’m here to tell you.

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Fun Meat Fact #1: Bacon comes from the belly of a hog. The spare ribs are pulled (scooped off) and what is left is a fresh belly which is then cured, smoked, and sliced for bacon. The photo above shows a pork belly that has been cured and smoked. Bacon! For more detailed information check out our pork cutting post! here.

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There it is how you usually see it, all packaged up and ready for the frying pan.

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Fun Meat Fact #2 Cottage bacon comes off the shoulder of the hog. If you refer to the pork cutting post, we use the Boston butt to make our cottage bacon. It is boned out, the cap of fat taken off, cured, pressed, and sliced. Cottage bacon tends to be more lean so it fries up more like ham than it does bacon. But you still get that same great bacon flavor. 🙂

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Here’s the cottage bacon all sliced up. Notice the difference between this and the regular bacon!? Much leaner. More meat than fat essentially. But the curing process is still the same.

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Fun Meat Fact #3 Canadian bacon comes from a pork loin that has been cured, smoked, and sliced. It is the typical bacon used in eggs Benedict or something of that nature. It’s probably the bacon least common due to the fact that people like their pork loins. And if you’ve got one hog, you sacrifice your pork chops for bacon. It is also much leaner than typical bacon. Frying up like ham much just the cottage bacon.

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So there you have it. Happy Friday everyone! Now go out and eat some
Bacon!!

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How Many Tri-Tips on One Beef?

First of all, let me apologize my fellow blog readers. I am long overdue for a post! But life at the butcher shop has been hectic. Deer season is in full swing and Thanksgiving is looming only two weeks away. Our smokehouse is going to start going non-stop in order to keep up! So I wanted to start doing something new. I missed wordless wednesday this week, blog FAIL! But never fear, here I am. And with some fun meat facts. To start it off, it’s all about the beef.

Two seems to be a very popular number when it comes to a whole carcass of beef. In fact, there are three cuts on a whole beef that only yield you two of them. What are those three cuts!? Can anyone name them..? I hope so!

Fun Meat Fact #1: On a whole beef, there are only two tri-tips

This, I think, is an interesting concept for those of us West Coasters. Tri-tip seems like such a common thing, we see it everywhere. But did you know that there are only TWO on one whole beef!? It really makes you think when we marinate the 400 lbs. a week during the summer that we do. That took a whole bunch of cattle in order to supply the demand West Coasters have created for tri-tip.

Fun Meat Fact #2: On a whole beef, there are only two briskets

As far as the West Coast goes, I don’t think we have such a close relationship with brisket. But even if you do, or you like corned beef brisket. There are only two found on one whole beef so cherish them. I, myself, LOVE brisket and if you’re looking for a great recipe on how to cook it, I’d recommend the Pioneer Woman. Recipes can be found here: http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2007/06/brisket_baby/

Fun Meat Fact #3: On a whole beef, there are only two flank steaks

If you haven’t discovered the beauty of flank steak, please do. It makes for great stir fry or something similar. The Pioneer Woman uses flank steak in many of her recipes as well. Here is a great recipe for Marinated Flank Steak http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2009/01/marinated-flank-steak-part-one/   And yes, there are only two so use them wisely.

So how many of you knew this!? Anyone willing to admit they had no idea..? Don’t be shy, I’d love to hear from you! And anyway, that’s what we are here for. To educate you all. 🙂 So hopefully Fun Meat Fact Fridays will be a trend I can continue sticking with. And you can continue learning about all things meat. Thank you for tuning in and bearing with us through the busy times. Have a great weekend everyone!