Do you love bacon? I know, I know bacon is bad for your health and it causes your cholesterol to skyrocket faster than just about any consumer meat product out there, but it tastes so good! The connection between geeks and bacon is nothing new, but the past five years of clever bacon products including: bacon soap, salt, popcorn, air fresheners, shower curtains, and even bacon wallets have only solidified the place in popular culture this delectable treat has gained.
So, why do geeks love bacon so much? For one, it’s easy to make. Just put a skillet on the stove, lay out some bacon strips, and a few minutes later you have a crispy meal that’s full of flavor and ready to enjoy.
Bacon also goes with just about everything. Salads benefit from bacon bits, peppers wrapped in bacon and stuffed with cream cheese are a classic addition to many southern cookouts, and just about any classic breakfast menu is filled with entrees served with at least one piece on the side. Even vegetarians can get in on the bacon craze with Smart Bacon and other meatless alternatives.
Bacon has a high flavor profile that is unlike any other natural product out there. It’s often joked among chefs that adding bacon to just about any recipe makes it better, and this is certainly the case with such unusual products as the Burger King Bacon Sundae. That combination of savory and sweet is hard to imitate with other ingredients. In fact, I have yet to find another meat product (vegetarian imitation or otherwise) that accurately replicates the properties of bacon.
There is another side to bacon that should certainly be explored. For one, bacon is a pork product and consumption is forbidden in a number of religious cultures. It’s also not the healthiest product in the world. The sodium nitrate used in the curing process has been linked to a number of health concerns related to regular ingestion of bacon including pulmonary disease. Cholesterol issues, heart disease, and other serious health problems have also been linked to the frequent consumption of bacon.
Good or bad, bacon is a staple in any meat eating geek’s diet. It can be wrapped around just about anything, cooked in minutes, and even served crumbled on top of ice cream. It makes an interesting room freshener, whimsical print on a shower curtain, and even a board game. Indeed, everything tastes better with bacon.
Photo: Public Domain