Bacon

Bacon is delicious. It stands alone just fine, but it also has a knack for making everything it comes in contact with better. It's like an anti-Kryptonite. In fact, bacon is so awesome, that the following progression is not at all uncommon.

What, doesn't that happen to you after frying up bacon?

Just The Facts

  1. Bacon is a cut of meat from the sides, belly or back of a pig.
  2. Bacon is usually smoked, cured, or both in some fashion.
  3. Using tofu or other meats, bacon has often been imitated, but never duplicated.

Cracked on Bacon

Bacon, like the world, is different in different places. Also like the world, being from different places doesn't make it any less delicious.

Much like titties, bacon has a universal appeal.

Even boobs, thought to be impossible to improve on, can be made better with bacon.

Awesome

MORE AWESOME

Types of Bacon

Streaky Bacon: Bacon as it's known to most Americans. Cut from the belly of the pig, it has long streaks of fat throughout the slice (or rasher, as they're known to the British babe at the bottom left). Usually fried in a pan before being served.

Streaky Bacon.

Back Bacon: A thicker, meatier slice from the middle of the pig's back. If you order bacon in the UK, this is what you'll get. Also known as Irish bacon or Canadian bacon.

No, the Brits do not eat John Candy for breakfast.

Middle Bacon: As the name suggests, a middle ground between back bacon and streaky bacon. Cheaper with more fat and a richer flavor than back bacon, but similar in most ways.

Cottage Bacon: No, it has nothing to do with man-on-man lovin', as 6 Everyday Words With Disturbing Alternate Meanings might lead you to think. Cut in oval slices from the shoulder of the pig, it's then cured and fried in a similar manner to streaky bacon.

Collar Bacon: Exactly what it sounds like. Bacon taken from the pig's neck, near the head.

Hock: Bacon from the ankle joint, between the ham and the foot. Also known as ham hocks.

Gammon: Cut from the back of the pig's leg. Apparently not the namesake of the board game.

Not pictured: Anything named after bacon.

Picnic Bacon: Cut from beneath the shoulder blade. A tougher cut than most bacon.

Bacon Substitutes

There are a myriad of products out there for those who cannot or will not eat bacon (known henceforth as heretics). A list of some follows.

Bacon Bits: Those little jars of almost-bacon in tiny, dehydrated chunks. Used as a topping on stuff like salad or baked potatoes the way they were meant to be enjoyed.

Now you're talkin'.

Bacon Salt: The greatest invention since the Internet. This wondrous powder makes its inventors' mantra, "Everything Should Taste Like Bacon", come wonderfully true. It's vegetarian (with one version that's even vegan), kosher, fat-free, low-sodium, and zero-calories, utterly destroying every conceivable reason for not eating bacon in one fell swoop.

Shut up and eat your Bacon Salt, hippie.

The best part about Bacon Salt is that it works. Take it from us here at Cracked.com, who love bacon enough to devote a topic page to it: This shit actually does taste like bacon, and everything you sprinkle it on will also taste like bacon. You hear that, heretics? Now you get to find out what you've been missing. It's now available in most major grocery stores nationwide as well, or you can order it from their website.

Baconnaise: From the creators of Bacon Salt, mayo that tastes like bacon. What else is there to say?

Bacon Lube: This is absolutely not a joke at all. Brought to you by the fine people at Bacon Salt, a bacon-flavored personal lubricant is currently in production. It's still waiting on FDA approval, but we here at Cracked could not be more thrilled about the myriad of 'porking' jokes such a breakthrough will hand to us on a silver platter.

Bakon Vodka: A product for every Cracked writer, reader, and spambot. In the dark ages, people used to have their bacon-y goodness separate from their getting wasted. Luckily, that problem has been remedied.

Progress.

Bakon Vodka seamlessly brings together the two great traditions of bacon and intoxication, because there's nothing quite like breakfast-tasting alcohol to train those kids to hold their liquor.

Bacon Fat: Listed as a substitute because it isn't bacon in its entirety. That said, the drippings from frying bacon can be saved and used in all kinds of cooking, especially in the UK and the Southern U.S. You can fry stuff in it the same way you might use oil or butter, and it's used in several recipes. Drippings from bacon are the reason behind barding, a process of coating roasts or game birds in bacon to increase its tenderness and flavor upon roasting. Barding gave rise to the Turbaconducken, a Turducken with each individual bird barded.

Just looking at it makes me shed tears of joy.

Turkey Bacon: It kinda has to go on the page, in spite of the fact that it is such a poor excuse for bacon. If you're a vegetarian, you wouldn't be eating a turkey product anyway. If you're avoiding bacon for health reasons, maybe your fat ass should only have 2 slices of the real stuff at a time. Bacon's been around for hundreds of years, and the obesity epidemic that grips the U.S. like a fat guy grips their Turbaconducken drumstick is relatively new.

Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Bacon is tasty.
  • Bacon is relatively inexpensive.
  • Bacon goes well as a sidedish or a main course.
  • Bacon Makes everything better. Well, maybe not everything, but here's a LIST: The 159 Things That Bacon Makes Better.
  • According to a Newcastle University study, foods high in protein - like bacon - can help cure hangovers. That's right, bacon has healing properties .

Cons:

  • Bacon in all its forms is high in fat compared to most other meats.
  • Though perfectly fine when used sparingly (just like everything else, regardless of what your fad diet tells you), bacon fat is just moderately healthier than cigarettes when overconsumed. It's almost pure fat (about 40% saturated fat), has 38 calories per teaspoon, and doesn't have much nutritional value besides providing the fat your body naturally needs.
  • Militant vegetarians and vegans seem especially pissed off about people eating pigs, so if you have friends who currently are, or someday become, heretics they will breathe down your neck about eating pigs because they're intelligent, innocent animals and just so precious.

Cute? Maybe. But you know how swine flu started to spread? Because someone didn't turn these fuckers into bacon.

  • Bacon is tasty. Listed under cons as well because it's so good, it lends itself to being eaten frequently and in large quantities.

Image copyright xkcd.com.