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New, Next Generation Flavored “Tender Belly” Bacon and Pork Cloud (Rinds)

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(Gerry Furth-Sides) You notice immediately that the one pound package of   Tender Belly dry cured bacon looks smaller.  That’s because there is less fat.  That’s because the hogs are given enough time to mature, and the bacon is cured for two weeks.

So you notice the instant it hits the pan that there is indeed almost no excess fat.  In fact, because a couple of pieces do not yield enough fat to fry an egg, a novel way to cook the bacon and eggs is in a coated container.

So this becomes an article of trying to find different ways of saying delectable, scrumptious, mouth-watering, new favorite and  eco-friendly to describe this bacon.

One dish is the Habanero Bacon Egg with Onion and Broccoli. Recipes for this dish and others are on the website. Tenderbelly.com.

The extraordinary, full, rich flavored Pork Belly signature dry-rub and the habanero cherrywood smoked bacon are exceptional items for everyday or holiday meals.

We made BLT sandwiches and salads with it.  The Habanero Cherrywood smoked bacon provides all the seasoning the salad needs, adding a lingering snap to the dish.  In this case a picture does not say one thousand words because the bacon’s substantial look and mouth feel do not show up here!

We cut the bacon into small pieces to serve

Tender Belly, was founded in 2010 by two brothers from Iowa – Shannon + Erik Duffy – who saw a demand for good, clean pork products. They grew the company to make the Inc. 5000 list of fastest-growing private companies for three years in a row.   Their mission stays the same: to create superior products by sourcing only the best pedigreed pigs, supporting family farmers, and inspiring sustainably-conscious food lovers.

The Ultimate Bacon Holiday Gift: Yeti Pork Package. A branded Yeti cooler filled with 30+ pounds of the best pork products. The Bacon Every Month Club  makes for a unique and reasonably priced gift.

Growing up in Iowa,  Founder Shannon Duffy likes being considered “progressive to the point of being labelled a ‘hog snob.’ “We’re pushing boundaries, challenging conventions, and redefining expectations of good quality pork products.

“We’re disrupters because we know that consumers are searching for a better product and we’re here to deliver it. We founded our business on our obsession with making great bacon and a passion for heritage pigs from Iowa that are naturally grown with no antibiotics, no hormones, no gestation and no nitrates or farrowing crates.”

For details, please see Tenderbelly.com.


Another intriguing new product is Pork Clouds.  Fried pork rinds are a popular, international  favorite.  American founder Brett grew up working on a grass-fed beef farm located literally next door to a meat packing plant. After starting his career testing hybrid vehicle batteries, he came upon the potential for a new pork rind snack and switched to the food world.

Details are on the website: https://baconsheir.com/pages/about-us

Pork Clouds began as a dinner party recipe shared among friends, after he developed a process to melt the fat off of fresh pork skin, cure it in salt, and rapidly crisp it in olive oil. The name, Pork Clouds came to mind because the chicharron was also fluffy. 
Each flavor of the Pork Clouds are then every so lightly dusted with clearly defined, fresh spices. Each uses a maximum of two curated spices of the most potent available.  For example  e.g. Malabar Black Pepper is chosen over the much more common Tellicherry. This results in a sharply more pipperine taste that requires less seasoning overall, thereby maximizing the flavor of the underlying crisp.
The company favorite so far is Habanero Pepper.  It  skips the more common jalapeño in favor of the more potent, slower burning habanero. 
A fascinating new product is the Pork Rind Panko.  The following (courtesy of Primal Bite Blog) is a recipe for Fried Green Tomatoes that we are eager to try.

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Gerry Furth-Sides

Gerry Furth-Sides

Content Editor/Columnist

Photo-journalist Gerry Furth-Sides has been covering the ethnic and American culinary scene in California since it first came into prominence 25 years ago.