Makin' bacon – Italian style

Sep 14, 2011

Buy pork bellies! 

I've always wanted to bellow that phrase into a two-piece antique telephone while dressed up with top hat and money bag like the Monopoly millionaire.

But this time I really mean it. 

Buy some pork bellies and make your own bacon. My Food for Thought pard Nancy Leson did. And not just any bacon. Nancy made the Italian style bacon known as pancetta. She tells all about it in this week's installment of our beloved,  long-running non-award winning  series.

After hearing Nancy rhapsodize over the pancetta and lardo she made, I'm encouraged to give it a try, too. But if you're going to start  messin' around making your own cured meats you'd better know what you're doing. To that end Nancy recommends the book "Charcuterie: The Craft of Salting, Smoking, and Curing" as well as the blog “Michael Ruhlman, Translating the Chef’s Craft for Every Kitchen, ” and John Kowalski and the Culinary Institute of America's The Art of Charcuterie for information about food safety with home-cured meats.

"Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon."

– Doug Larson

Food for Thought” is a weekly KPLU feature covering the world of food as well as the thinking that goes into it. The feature is published here and airs on KPLU 88.5 every Wednesday during Morning Edition and All Things Considered.