Marianne at The Royal Bacon Society recently gave away 10 coupons each good for a free pound of Oscar Mayer's new Super Thick Cut Applewood Smoked Bacon, and I was one of the lucky recipients.
If you remember, back in July I mocked Oscar Mayer for their "Hearty Thick Cut" bacon, which was not at all thick cut...but was extra wide. I thought that was a sneaky trick, but Marianne's review of the new stuff was fairly glowing and, you know, the price was right.
Well, I'm glad I gave them another chance. The new Super Thick Cut bacon is made of Win and Joy. The slices are hugely thick - like, ham-thick - and there are only nine slices per pound. What's more: there are no huge, meatless expanses of fat in these rashers, but rather a very nice balance of lean and fat, with a distribution pattern so perfect that one might call it "textbook bacon." Consequently, they cooked evenly with no wrinkling or curling. I always cook very thick bacon over moderately low heat and under a heavy cast-iron bacon press to make sure that the slices brown evenly and aren't tempted to curl up as the fat renders out, but the Super Thick Cut bacon didn't need the bacon press, it stayed flat all by itself. That's always a good sign, because it means that the cure wasn't too wet and that not a lot of water was retained after the pork came out of the cure.