Hi everyone! I'm new to posting but have read often here before. I know that sometimes people
have trouble cooking bacon
in a cast iron pan
because it "candies up" from the sugar in it. I have a way of cooking it that works out GREAT and seasons your pan like nothing else can. Try this and you'll see why some "old timers" said to season your pan with bacon
. I'm assuming you're already using a fairly seasoned pan here. Don't do this with a new unseasoned pan.
First and foremost, forget about the idea of cooking bacon straight and flat. You need a giant pan to do it, it takes forever, and results are so-so. Take a whole one-pound package of bacon and a regular 10.5 inch cast iron skillet. I like the thick cut bacon best. Separate each piece of bacon and just dump it in the pan all willy nilly. Don’t worry about it being balled up. It’ll taste fine and cook up evenly, I promise. Start cooking at medium low heat. Use your spatula to flip and swirl the bacon around now and then so all parts get to the heat. You’ll notice the “gummy feeling” starting fairly soon. Don’t worry about it. Keep cooking. When you get about 1/8 to 1/4 inch of fat rendered, continue to swirl and flip the bacon, but use your spatula at the same time to gently scrape the gummy parts of the skillet – all done at the same time while cooking. Just gently scrape back and forth, back and forth. You can feel the gummy stuff coming up, and the grease is all right there immediately filling up the spaces that you scrape free. You’ll have to do this a few times but as you get toward the end of cooking, you’ll notice that eventually the gunk just goes away and the pan feels smooth as silk. I cook my bacon until it’s nicely browned with about 3/4 of the fat rendered off. Some people like it black and some like it half raw. If you’re a “half raw” person, you can remove the bacon when it’s to your liking and just continue to scrape the pan until the gunk is gone (assuming you have enough
pork fat rendered off in there--if not, add some fat), and then turn off the heat. I find that this process seems to “super season” my pan like nothing else can. I pour out most of the grease when I’m done and scramble some eggs with the remaining grease. Not one bit of egg sticks to the pan! The scraping (cleaning) while there is very hot pork fat in the pan seems to be the key.
By the way, I do this with other things too when I'm cooking. As long as something isn't stuck rock-hard on the pan and as long as there's a fair amount of grease in the pan, just scrape your spatula back and forth while you're cooking. You'll soon find out just by the "feel" how to do this and whether it's working or not with whatever's stuck to your pan.
Hope this helps all the bacon lovers out there. You won't believe how CRISPY your bacon will come out this way with your cast iron
This is a great site. Thanks to everyone for sharing their knowledge.