Have I mentioned that I love bacon? I don’t actually think I have… well I LOVE BACON! But not the crappy uber-salty processed crap from the grocery store, oh no. I’m talking pasture-raised danish style bacon with no nitrates of any kind and way less salt.I also have a deep and abiding affection for peameal/back/canadian bacon, but that was allowed on my contest diet because it’s an extremely lean source of protein… go canadian bacon! In case you didn’t know, canadian/back/peameal bacon is just the tenderloin cut of pork sliced thin to fry up. Things that are awesome about pork tenderloin:
- Pork tenderloin is almost as lean as a chicken breast with 3 oz of chicken having 3 g of fat and the same pork servings having 4 g of fat!
- Pork tenderloin is an excellent source of iron, phosphorous, vitamin B12 and Niacin
- a 3 oz. serving contains HALF of your RDA of Thiamin – Without this key mineral, metabolism of carbohydrate, protein and fat would be significantly compromised. Animal protein is one of the best sources of this nutrient, and among the choices, pork is tops (source: http://www.realcanadianbacon.com/pork-tenderloin/low-fat-meat.htm)
- It’s a great bioavailable source of protein with most people tolerating and digesting it well (things like lamb, rabbit, and game meats are sometimes hard to digest)
So if you are looking to liven up you breakfast and you are on a diet that doesn’t allow a lot of fat, go pick up some good quality back bacon. Also, if you live in Toronto and you can digest gluten, or are willing to brave a stomach ache, go to the St. Lawrence Market, find the Carousel Bakery on the upper floor and order their peameal bacon on a bun… just the plain one, do not get fancy, do not put anything on it. It is heavenly. Their peameal is cut thick and fried to perfection, then piled high (like 5 pieces) on a fresh-baked kaiser that is in and of itself, quite delectable (and I’m not a bread person). If you were previously unaware of this awesomeness… you’re welcome, if you’ve already experienced it, then you know what I’m talking about!
But back to the fatty stuff. Since I am not on a competition diet anymore, I can have danish style bacon again. This is the streaky stuff but is cut a little wider and generally has a better fat to meat ratio. I have been cooking with it. Specifically I have been cooking VEGETABLES with it… say what?! That sh*t cray! I know but seriously, it’s awesome. Also, I have not gone crazy and made the most intense cheat meal of all time (pictured left) but if you want to clog you’re arteries a bit, that is a bacon cheeseburger on a fried krispy kreme donut.
I have cooked asparagus, zucchini and bok choy now in a little bacon grease and then added back the cooked bacon bits. I have come to the conclusion that bacon makes everything better… everything!I feel like most people have already discovered this, but I was pretty happy with my forays into vegetable bacon bliss. I also just ate some for breakfast on occasion, but that’s relatively boring (delicious, but boring). My next venture will be brussel sprouts and bacon and baking this up in the oven instead of sauteing, because I actually don’t really like brussel sprouts; I find them too bitter, but they are really really good for you so I am going to try to make them delicious by adding bacon as a secret weapon, and maybe some pine nuts, because they are also awesome.
Other bacon awesomeness that happened this past week was cheddar-stuffed, bacon-wrapped, chicken breast. Literally 3 ingredients and it was knock-your-socks off delicious. I accompanied that dish with my mom’s recipe for roasted veggies and potatoes, but it didn’t turn out quite as nice as hers, I’ll have to do some experimenting to get it right before I post the instructions.
Oh and here is an update photo that I said I would post. I have filled out A LOT. my abs have softened and my legs don’t have the same definition as before… BUT look at the muscle! Seriously, I have gained like 8 pounds this week (not an exaggeration) but I think 7 of those went straight to my muscles because my arms and legs got HUGE post contest. Kind of awesome… kind of scary. I am cleaning up my diet and might be doing something more structure like the 21 Day Sugar Detox to try to clean out my system and get rid of sugar cravings that I have shamefully reacquired. It takes about 3 days for me to get back into eating sugar and wanting a sweet fix everyday, but takes at least 2 weeks to kick it… can you say unfair? But that’s life.
Nothing to it but to do it!