[Updated 4/15/12: Here’s an oldie but goodie that desperately needed to get spiffed up. The old photos were embarrassingly bad. Enjoy the facelift!]
What do you do if you’re making bacon for a crowd and you don’t want to spatter grease on your pretty frock?
You bake it in the oven!
I first learned of this technique from Cook’s Illustrated and the initial batch I baked was revelatory. Oven-baked bacon crisps up beautifully, stays flat, AND you can easily collect a nice container of bacon fat that you can keep in the fridge for cooking. I love twofers.
Here’s what to gather to feed 4 people:
Here’s what you do:
Preheat oven to 400ºF with the rack situated right smack in the middle of the oven.
Grab your bacon…
…and line a baking sheet with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Place a cooling rack on the lined tray…
…and put the bacon in a single layer on the rack.
Pop the tray in the oven and cook for 10-20 minutes (thicker bacon requires longer cooking time).
Rotate the tray halfway through the cooking process and keep a close eye on the bacon near the end of the cooking time to make sure it doesn’t burn. You can smell if your bacon is ready, so trust your schnauze.
Line a plate with a few sheets of paper towel. Place the finished bacon on the paper towels to drain.
Pick up the corners of the foil carefully to collect the bacon grease in the middle and pour into a jar or glass container.
Now, that’s liquid gold.