Saturday, May 11, 2013

Bacon Bowl BLT's

Ohhhh, bacon. Who doesn't love bacon?  In our house, we definitely love it, and I am always looking for new ways to use it.  I wanted to make some kind of bacon bowls/cups for a while now, and I had seen different ideas online for making these.  Many people use muffin tins, or the bottoms of muffin tins, for shaping the bowls, but I wanted something a little bigger.  I wanted to make more of a salad bowl out of bacon (I know, those don't typically go together in our minds...), so I decided to go bigger.  This did not take too much time, but it did take some trial and error, and a LOT of bacon.  I realize that some of you may not be ready to eat 10 slices of bacon in one meal, and therefore, feel free to go smaller.  I just ended up eating only about half of my "bowl," but my hubby ate the whole thing and said he could've eaten more... of course.  So, take a look at my method, and try for yourself!  Here is what I did:

Bacon Bowl BLT's
(serves 2)
  • 20 slices of bacon (or less if you aren't crazy)
  • 1/2 head of lettuce, washed and chopped/torn
  • 2 small tomatoes, chopped
  • Italian dressing (or any Paleo-friendly dressing)
  • 1 chicken breast, cooked and chopped (OPTIONAL)
First, grab a baking sheet and line it with foil.  Take your bacon, and create a basket weave pattern with 5 strips vertical and 5 strips horizontal.  Tuck under the ends if you want.  Make 2 of these on your baking sheet, like this:

Place the baking sheet in a cold oven, then turn it on to 375 degrees.  Allow the bacon to bake for 15-20 minutes, until it is cooked, but not crispy.  You want it to still be a bit flimsy.  Remove the pan from the oven.  Next, you will shape them into bowls.  Grab a small/medium bowl (I used ramekins), turn it upside down, and cover it with a paper towel (or stack 2 for more absorption).  Place this onto a plate.  Using spatulas, carefully pick up one of the basket-weaved squares and drape it over the paper-towel covered upside-down bowl.  You want it to mold into the shape of the bowl!  Mine looked like this:

Place the plate with the bowl/bacon weave into the microwave for 3 minutes (you may want to start with 2 if your microwave is powerful).  You may also want to cover this with another paper towel to avoid splatter messes.  The microwave should finish cooking the bacon and make it hard and crispy, like this:

Repeat this with the second bowl, until they are both cooked and hardened.  Carefully flip the bowl over and off the paper-towels onto a clean plate.  Voila!  You have a bacon bowl! Fill it with your lettuce and top with the tomato and dressing. 

Doesn't that look delicious and super bacon-y?? This is a great version of a BLT for people not eating grains/bread, and even though it is a LOT of bacon, it's really delicious.  We also topped ours with chopped chicken, which made it a more complete meal, in my opinion.  And like I said, you don't have to eat the whole bowl in one sitting- I saved half of mine with some extra lettuce and tomato for another meal!  Or of course, you can try this with muffin tins and make them a bit smaller with less bacon. Try it out for yourselves and enjoy!

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