Category Archives: Bacon

Chicken and Bacon Ranch Pizza

Lately I have been tinkering with mastering my pizza dough. I’m sure you have all seen my postings, with all sorts of pizza creations. I think I am getting pretty darn close not only with the pizza dough, which is probably the most important, but also with the temperature, cook time, and well, the toppings.

A recent gift from Nueske’s yielded a package of peppered bacon. I was stoked to say the least, and as I quickly thought of making BLT’s, I decided to do something a bit different, and that was to make a chicken and bacon ranch pizza.

Chicken and Bacon Ranch Pizza

I had some leftover chicken that I wanted to use, and hence why this pizza came to what it was, not only that but I could not shake the package of bacon out of my mind. I used my KettlePizza on this one, but you can definitely use your oven as well.

Let’s get started.

  • Your favorite pizza dough,  about 16″ in diameter
  • Fine cornmeal for dusting
  • 1 cup of your favorite pizza sauce
  • 3 tbsp pesto
  • 2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 2 cups of cooked chicken, cubed or shredded
  • 5 slices of bacon, partially cooked
  • Ranch dressing, to your liking

Start by lightly coating your pizza peel with light cornmeal. This will help slide the pizza onto your pre-heated pizza stone.

Preheat your oven to the highest temp, along with the pizza stone. I’ve found that around 575o-600 degrees is a perfect temperature to cook the pizza.

Next, lightly flour a wooden board, or clean counter, and shape your dough. I’ve learned to stretch the dough ever so lightly, but keeping the edges a bit thicker. Once stretched to about 16 inches or so, lay the dough onto the pizza peel.

bacon-chicken-ranch-pizza-ingredients

Next, ladle on the pizza sauce, ensuring the the pizza is covered, then drizzle on the pesto. Top with the mozzarella cheese, then top with the chicken, and then lay the slices of partially cooked bacon over the top.

Chicken and Bacon Ranch Pizza

Slide the pizza off of the pizza peel onto the pizza stone, and cook for about 7 minutes or until the dough has risen, is partially darkened on the bottom, and the bacon is fully cooked.

Remove, and slice. Drizzle your slice(s) with as much ranch dressing as you desire.

The result is nothing short of amazing. The crust is killer. It’s ‘airy’, slightly crisp, and the first thing you get is this whiff of awesome smokey bacon. Biting into it yields that great sourness from the ranch, the smokiness from the bacon, and the chicken, cheese, and pesto. It’s a knockout pizza for sure.

Give this one a try if you are looking for new pizza ideas. Hope you enjoy!

Bacon Fried Rice

One of my kids favorite recipes is fried rice. I think that even at a very early age, my father-in-law had served it up for breakfast to him while they watched him while we were at work. Yes, I’m talking like two years old or something of that nature. Let’s just say he was young. But at that age, that food stuck in his head, that’s what fried rice can do to someone. Since then, he has come a long way in terms of exploring food. He is big into smoked meats such as ribs, brisket, and chicken, and lots of other things. Let’s just say he is no longer a chicken tender and french fry kid. With that said, one of his favorite dishes is bacon fried rice, so much that he makes requests for it. I’m down with that because this is a great opportunity to get vegetables into this rice, along with eggs (that he hates), that he devours it all up. That is called winning.

Bacon Fried Rice

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of Jasmine, or long grain rice
  • 2 cups of water
  • 5 slices of Nueske’s Bacon, diced
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 whole carrots, diced
  • 1 large shallot, diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 whole eggs, beaten
  • 1 tbsp Red Boat Fish Sauce or Three Crabs Fish Sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup of frozen peas
  • 1 tbsp chili oil, optional
  • additional water

Start by making your rice. I use a rice cooker, and to that I add the rice to the rice pot, and rinse several times in cold water until the runs clear. Drain and add equal parts of water. Cover, and turn on the rice cooker until it is finished. I love the rice cooker.

Now I do this the same day, and the trick to making fried rice the same day is to make sure the rice gets dry. I accomplish this by removing the cooked rice onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, fanning it out, and letting it sit on the counter for several hours. Otherwise, let the rice cool, store in the refrigerator and use the following day.

Make sure you have prepared the remaining ingredients.

Heat a large wok on medium heat. Add in the diced bacon, and cooked until slightly crisp. Keep the bacon fat in the wok, along with the bacon. Next toss in the garlic and shallot and cook for about 40 seconds or so. Add in about two tablespoons of butter and your chili oil. Stir, then toss in the carrots.  Add in about 2 tablespoons of water. Stir.

How to make bacon fried rice

Turn up the heat.

Add in the beaten eggs, and stir, ensuring the the eggs are thinned out and cooked. Using your spatula, break up the eggs into pieces.

Toss in your rice, and begin breaking that up, using your spatula, and scraping underneath the rice in the wok. Use your wok master skills and wok like you mean it. Toss in the fish sauce, cracked black pepper, and soy sauce. Keep woking, aggressively under high heat until you get a nice light crust on the rice.

Serve immediately.

The result is an awesome bacon fried rice. You get the great smokiness from the bacon, and when everything is mixed together, well, let’s just say it’s awesome, and perfect for breakfast as well. Hope you enjoy!

Carne en su Jugo

There’s your Spanish lesson for the day. Carne en su jugo basically translates to meat in its juices. A little known fact that I took many, many years of Spanish and really only use it when ordering at my local taco shop. Many of the waitresses there actually go at me with the Spanish language right off the bat, that I actually have no idea what they are saying, and then I have to speak in English. Oh well, at least I try, right?

I first game across this dish when eating in Dallas, and was completely blown away. It basically is slow cooked meat, in its juices (obviously) that is paired with cooked bacon, and pinto beans. The one I had in Dallas was cooked in a tomatillo, jalapeño, and cilantro broth, almost like a chili verde, so I thought I would jazz it up a bit and go with a deeper beef base and utilize chipotles in adobo sauce rather than the one I experienced in the past. Let’s just say as the one in Dallas was good, this one was awesome, and it’s down right comforting.

Carne en su Jugo Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs of beef bottom round, thinly sliced, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 tbsp cooking oil
  • 2 15 oz cans of pinto beans, drained, rinsed
  • 2 chipotles in adobo sauce (reduce to one for less spice)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 4 cups of beef stock
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 whole onion, roughly chopped
  • 8 slices of bacon, chopped, and cooked
  • fresh cilantro
  • lime wedges, optional
  • fresh jalapeño, thinly sliced, optional
  • salt and pepper to taste

Start by preparing all of your ingredients. Once prepared add one cup of the stock to a blender. Toss in half a cup of fresh cilantro, the chipotle chili peppers, and the garlic. Blend until you have a smooth texture. Set aside.

Next, heat your a medium, to large size pot onto the stove and bring to a medium-high heat. Toss in the oil, then add in the chopped beef. Spread evenly and let it cook for about 5 minutes, undisturbed. Give a good stir, and reserve all of the liquid that gets extracted from the beef.  Add in the chipotle beef stock mixture, and give a good stir. Add the remaining stock, the cumin powder, and the pinto beans. Stir, cover, and reduce  the heat to a simmer. Cook for about 45 minutes.

How to make Mexican Carne en su Jugo

During this time, cook your bacon. Once cooked, place onto a paper lined sheet to remove any excess bacon grease. Pour out the grease, but reserve about a tablespoon to cook the onions in. Add the chopped onions and cook for about 8 minutes or so, until they are translucent, not caramelized. Remove the onions and place them in a bowl.

Now onto plating.

Ladle a generous amount into your soup bowl. Add some cooked bacon, fresh cilantro, a squeeze of lime, and a couple of spoonfuls of the cooked onion.

Dig in.  This soup has everything in one of my favorite bowls of soup. It had that smokiness from the Nueske’s bacon, along with great heat from the chipotle peppers that is perfectly balanced by the sweetness of the onion. Now that you have that going on for you, you will keep spooning away with the great flavor from the garlic and cilantro, the super tender beef, and the creaminess of the pinto beans. Need I say more?

Carne en su Jugo

I wanted another bowl, but I refrained from doing so. Let’s just say this will be packed for lunch for the week, if it lasts that long. Give this one a shot, it’s really, really good, and perfect on this long winter we have been having. I hope you enjoy!

Carne en su Jugo
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • 2 lbs of beef bottom round, thinly sliced, roughly chopped
  • ½ tbsp cooking oil
  • 2 15 oz cans of pinto beans, drained, rinsed
  • 2 chipotles in adobo sauce (reduce to one for less spice)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 4 cups of beef stock
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 whole onion, roughly chopped
  • 8 slices of bacon, chopped, and cooked
  • fresh cilantro
  • lime wedges, optional
  • fresh jalapeño, thinly sliced, optional
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Start by preparing all of your ingredients. Once prepared add one cup of the stock to a blender. Toss in half a cup of fresh cilantro, the chipotle chili peppers, and the garlic. Blend until you have a smooth texture. Set aside.
  2. Next, heat your a medium, to large size pot onto the stove and bring to a medium-high heat. Toss in the oil, then add in the chopped beef. Spread evenly and let it cook for about 5 minutes, undisturbed. Give a good stir, and reserve all of the liquid that gets extracted from the beef. Add in the chipotle beef stock mixture, and give a good stir. Add the remaining stock, the cumin powder, and the pinto beans. Stir, cover, and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for about 45 minutes.
  3. During this time, cook your bacon. Once cooked, place onto a paper lined sheet to remove any excess bacon grease. Pour out the grease, but reserve about a tablespoon to cook the onions in. Add the chopped onions and cook for about 8 minutes or so, until they are translucent, not caramelized. Remove the onions and place them in a bowl.
  4. Now onto plating.
  5. Ladle a generous amount into your soup bowl. Add some cooked bacon, fresh cilantro, a squeeze of lime, and a couple of spoonfuls of the cooked onion.
  6. Dig in. This soup has everything in one of my favorite bowls of soup. It had that smokiness from the Nueske’s bacon, along with great heat from the chipotle peppers that is perfectly balanced by the sweetness of the onion. Now that you have that going on for you, you will keep spooning away with the great flavor from the garlic and cilantro, the super tender beef, and the creaminess of the pinto beans. Need I say more?

 

Mixed Vegetable Mashed Potatoes

While growing up, and probably to this day, my favorite meal was fried chicken, mashed potatoes, and corn. That plate of food just screams comfort food, then, and now. As I’ve grown older, I find myself, probably like my elders, mixing corn into the mashed potatoes and gravy, and loving every bite of it. My kids, for the most part, hate vegetables. Granted, they are getting older and will experiment with some other vegetables, and I try to serve a nice healthy portion every night, struggling with them, for the most part, to have them eat their vegetables, but I typically fail. I thought that if I could make mashed potatoes, and hide some vegetables within, along with some bacon, that they might consider, but I lost that battle. This recipe is great if you are looking to include vegetables within your mashed potatoes, and can work with corn, carrots, or for me, our garden beans.

Mixed Vegetable Mashed Potatoes

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 3 yukon gold potatoes, medium-sized, skin on, cubed
  • 1 clove of garlic, smashed
  • 1 cup of vegetables, I chose garden beans, quartered
  • 3 slices of good bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup of milk
  • salt to taste
  • cracked black pepper, to taste
  • water

Start by preparing your ingredients.

Next, add cold water to a pot of water, enough to cover the potatoes by a couple of inches.  Heat on medium-high heat, and cook until the potatoes are fork tender, about 15 minutes.

Drain the potatoes, and return them back to the stove, cooking on medium heat to remove any excess water. Turn off the heat.

Add the vegetables, in my case garden beans.

How to make mashed potatoes with vegetables

Toss in the butter, milk, and salt and pepper. Use a potato masher and begin mashing until you have a desired consistency.

Fold in the bacon, taste, and season accordingly.

Serve as a side with some of your favorite comfort foods such as meatloaf, or fried chicken.

I know I failed on this one with my kids, but one day, I swear, they will begin to love the simple things that I tried to encourage every night at the dinner table. Until then… I hope you enjoy these mixed vegetable mashed potatoes.