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Ingredient of the Week: Bacon

When can you ever go wrong with bacon? Chefs Tom Douglas and Thierry Rautureau talk about their bacon recommendations. (AP File Photo)

Mmm, bacon.

Internet memes aside, Chefs Tom Douglas and Thierry Rautureau have some recommendations for the crisp deliciousness that is fried pork belly.

But first, the existential question of bacon-purchasing: What to buy?

“There is no right or wrong,” Thierry says. “It depends on what you’re going to do with it. If you’re going to make two sunny-side up eggs, with two slabs of bacon next to it, I would [use] fairly thin bacon, because you’re going to be just frying it in the pan; you don’t need a big bacon stick next to your eggs.”

But if you don’t want it as a breakfast food, Thierry says go with thick-cut. “If you’re going to cook it and dice it in a salad, thicker is better. You’re not looking to fry the thing dry, you still want some chewiness to it.”

For the health-conscious among us, there are plenty of imitation bacon varieties available. But Tom says he only ever veers from “bacon bacon” – e.g. turkey, tofu, or veggie bacons – when aiming for a different flavor, like Italian or pancetta.

“It also makes a great BLT,” he says.

Thierry recommends going in for bacon whole-hog at least once in your lifetime.

“You should make the commitment to buy a big piece once,” he says. “Cut it into three or four pieces, wrap it up and put it in the freezer, and then you have a bulk of bacon in the freezer, which is always something you can use.”

Because, really, when can you go wrong with bacon?

Whole Foods Markets are a proud sponsor of Seattle Kitchen’s Ingredient of the Week.

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