Today let’s talk about bacon.
Do you love bacon? Really, really love bacon?
If your response is, “oh yeah,” then you’re going to love this article. (If your answer is no, then why the heck not?)
Well, we love our bacon around here. If you only know me by this blog, you may not know this little fact about me–I am a butcher’s wife.
Yes, my friends, my man makes such wonderful things as bacon, sweet bologna, ham, and many kinds of sausage.
Then he brings them home for us to eat.
What’s not to love about that? One of my favorite things is to smell his shirt when he comes home from working in and out of the smokehouse. Yup, I give him a big old hug and then breathe in that woodsy-smoky smell. (I’m weird, I know.)
Anyway, on to my little post about bacon, and the uses of bacon grease. I started a quart-sized mason jar to collect and keep our bacon drippings after we’ve cooked a batch. Because it’s a shame to just waste it, man. Here are some of the uses I’ve run across to use some of that leftover bacon goodness: Make stove-top popcorn. This one is newer to me, but don’t knock it till you’ve tried it. I used some bacon grease in lieu of my usual coconut oil (which is good too!) and it totally rocked. It provides the grease and the saltiness. Fried Potatoes. Potatoes, onions, a little s & p, all fried up in bacon drippings. Yum. Image courtesy of this blog. Bacon Dressing. Just add a little vinegar and sugar and you voila! a tasty salad dressing. Image and recipe found here.
Cookies. Substitute bacon grease for 1/2 of the butter or shortening, or whatever fat your recipe calls for. (Ex: Instead of 1 cup butter, use 1/2 C bacon grease and 1/2 C butter) It will lend a little extra something to the taste, but shouldn’t overwhelm.
Make soap. This site tells you how to get that bacon grease ready to make into soap.
Make a candle. Spring Mountain Living has a good tutorial on doing this.
Feed the birds. All you need to do to make a simple bird feeder is a pine cone rolled in bacon drippings, then rolled in birdseed and hung up.
Season your cast iron cookware. You know I am loving my cast iron skillet and have learned the importance of having a well seasoned one. Use this instead of other fats/oils for seasoning purposes.
Season veggies and soups. Or pretty much anything. Trust me, you can hardly go wrong by adding at least a dab of it to almost any old thing you’re cooking.