Experiment 50

To determine the effect on the flavor and the losses of bacon by cooking at different temperatures and to different stages of doneness.

Weigh the bacon before and after cooking to determine the percentage lost during cooking. The difference in weight of the uncooked and cooked bacon is the total cooking loss. The weight of the fat in the cooking utensil is the approximate fat loss.

Have the bacon sliced or cut on a slicing machine 3/32 inch thick. Make a tracing of slices if desired.

1. Place the slices of bacon on a rack 1/2 inch above the bottom of an open pan. Cook in an oven at 160°C. (about 320°F.) for 18 minutes. Do not turn.

2. Place the weighed slices of bacon so that they lie flat and full length in a cold, heavy iron or aluminum skillet. (With a 9-inch skillet 3 slices of bacon will usually lie flat and full length.) Place over a slow fire and cook slowly until a uniform brown in color. It should be medium well done or crisp but not brittle. Turn the bacon frequently and in such a manner that it is cooked uniformly. Often the center, if the skillet is hot, of the slice of bacon is done while the ends are not.

3. Place the weighed slices of bacon so that they will lie flat and full length in a hot, heavy iron or aluminum skillet. Cook rapidly at a high temperature until a uniform brown in color. Turn the bacon frequently and in such a manner that it is cooked uniformly.

4. Repeat 2, but cook the bacon until it is very crisp and well done or brittle. Compare the cooking losses and flavor with 1 and 2.

Which method of cooking gives the best-flavored bacon? Which method causes the fat to smoke or burn? Does the bacon taste of burned fat? Which method causes the bacon to curl the most? Which method gives the most evenly cooked product? Compare the flavor, the cooking losses, and the cost of the cooked bacon, cooked only until crisp and that cooked until brittle.

Weight of uncooked bacon, grams

Weight of cooked bacon, grams

Total cooking loss, per cent

Fat loss, per cent

Straight or curled

Color

Flavor

Results and conclusions.

Experiment 51

To compare the flavor and cooking losses of different brands of bacon.

Cook different grades and brands of bacon in the oven at 160°C, see Experiment 50,1. The different bacons may be scored before and after cooking for the color and uniformity of color of lean and fat, for the percentage of fat and lean, the distribution of the lean and the fat, and for texture. The cooked bacon may be scored for color, the clearness of the fat, the percentage and distribution of fat and lean, the crispness, and the flavor.

Brand of or grade of bacon

Uncooked weight, grams

Cooked weight, grams

Total cooking loss, per cent

Fat loss, per cent

Straight or curled

Flavor

Results and conclusions.