Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Grilled Bacon Chops and Chips

Some evenings, I don't want to spend an hour in the kitchen. I may have had a busy day, or we may have gotten home later. On those days, I like to plan for a quick and simple meal I can pull together in under an hour, and ideally in less than 30 minutes.

Bacon chops

A bacon chop is simply a thick cut slice of British bacon bacon. It is cut from the shoulder end of the loin and leaves the pork belly attached. The chop is then cured like bacon, and can come either smoked or unsmoked.

My personal preference is for a dry cure, smoked bacon.

There are dozens of recipes for bacon chops as this humble cut has become more popular again in English kitchens, utilising all sorts of extra ingredients and condiments. Since I want a very quick and fuss-proof meal, I tend to skip all that.

Chops can be cooked in the same was as you would any other type of bacon. Grill it, fry it, or pop it in the oven. Since I am already heating the oven to cook chips I just pop the bacon chops in as well, making dinner even less of a fuss for me.

Preheat the oven to 200c/400f

Chips (thick cut fries) go on a baking tray. These come out of the freezer, and generally take about 25 minutes to cook.I

f you don't have any chips in the freezer, slice a few potatoes into 1/2 inch rings, drizzle over a bit of olive oil and a some salt and pepper and bake those in the oven about 30 minutes, turning half way through cooking.

Use a rack like this to drain fat away

Cooking the chops

Lay the bacon chops on a baking tray. I like to use a rack so that fats can drain away while cooking.

Cook in the oven about 25 minutes, turning them over halfway through cooking.

Once taken out of the oven, I will drain the fat into a bowl to be used for roasting potatoes in a future meal.

Just to round things out, I will sometimes add in some sauteed mushrooms or a fried egg. 

Once you have the chips and chops in the oven, all you'll need to do is pick out a vegetable to eat as a side dish. I usually grab peas.

Bacon chop with chips and peas, and a fried egg