Beyond Bacon: A Review

Everything you need to know about pork (but were afraid to ask)

Everything you need to know about pork (but were afraid to ask)

I brought home my copy of Beyond Bacon from the post office like a proud parent.

“Look at how beautiful it is!” I shrieked, thrusting it into hubs’ face and stroking the cover adoringly.

Honestly folks, this is one gorgeous cookbook, I was in love before I even turned the first page. The photography is incredible and the design has a lovely, rustic whimsical feel.

this picture does not do it justice

this picture does not do it justice

Before we dig into the details, I have to stress that this is no ordinary cookbook.

Nope, Beyond Bacon is a cookbook dedicated entirely to pork and in touch with the humble pig in a way that most cooks are not.

This is true nose-to-tail eating.

image courtesy Paleo Parents

image courtesy Paleo Parents

Before you even get to the myriad of recipes, there’s a very helpful section on the virtues of pastured pork, how to select the best cuts, how to prepare them properly and what to ask your butcher when you go in search of your own porcine.

The authors (Matthew McCarry and Stacy Toth of Paleo Parents fame) clearly care about their meat and value traditional cooking – so much so that there’s even a recipe to make your own head cheese. Yes, I shuddered at that too but it’s nice to know I have a recipe on hand if I ever get the stomach for it.

Beyond Bacon's amazing baconnaise - it's like mayo...but better!

Beyond Bacon’s amazing baconnaise – it’s like mayo…but better!

Living on a tiny island in the Caribbean as I do, getting my hands on a whole pastured pig is out of the question so I didn’t feel like I could do these wonderful recipes justice. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find that many of them were achievable, even with my own limited resources.

I road tested the Cajun Porkloin, Baconnaise, Sweet Potato Biscuits and Bacon Chicken. All got a big thumbs up from every member of the household (Dog, in particular, was a big fan judging from the puddle of drool he created in the kitchen while I cooked).

cajun pork - perfectly spiced

cajun pork – perfectly spiced

And don’t make the mistake of thinking that it’s all about the mains. There’s a very substantial sides section featuring dishes like Maple Sage Roasted Butternut Squash and Prosciutto & Fig Salad, as well as a surprisingly large array of desserts.

These included yellow lard cake (FYI: there’s a lot of lard in this book), salted caramel bacon sauce and triple chocolate freezer fudge.

In summary, I’m usually not a big fan of cookbooks (all my recipes come from digging around the internet) but Beyond Bacon is one I’ll treasure for a long time and a great resource for my kitchen.

Beyond Bacon is being released as a hardback on July 2nd. I was given a free copy for review but did not receive any additional compensation for this post. As always, I wouldn’t endorse anything I didn’t 100% love. This is a great book and I cannot recommend it enough. If you want to get your hands on a copy, click through to pre-order it here.

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8 thoughts on “Beyond Bacon: A Review

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