Tag Archives: bacon wednesdays

Bacon Wednesday: Pull-Apart Bacon Cheese Bread

Pull-Apart Bacon Cheese BreadWe have volunteers in the warehouse today so naturally we had to offer them some sustenance since it’s about 42 degrees below zero out there. Nothing says lovin’ like some bacon cheese bread. It has no redeeming nutritional value unless you count the flecks of onion and green pepper. I say let’s count them.

Pull-Apart Bacon Cheese Bread

12 strips of bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled

1 teaspoon vegetable oil

1/3 cup diced red onion

1/3 cup diced green pepper

1 16 1/3-ounce can buttermilk biscuits

4 tablespoons melted butter

½ cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat the vegetable oil in a sauté pan and fry the onions and peppers until they are soft and beginning to brown.

Cut the biscuits into quarters and put them in a bowl, along with the bacon, onions and peppers.

Add the melted butter and combine thoroughly. Add the cheese.

Put the bread mixture into a greased 9-inch bundt pan. Bake for 30 minutes.

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The Chicks are back

The Chicks in warmer weather
The Chicks in warmer weather

We apologize. We’ve been away. But we’re back now.

See, here’s how it works in the nonprofit world. Everyone goes all out for about 50 weeks a year. And then around the middle of December we’ve just done all we can do. So, barring an emergency, we just take the rest of the year off. Of course, we had an emergency Christmas week when Miss Brenda of United Neighbors of Edgehill needed some scarves for 27 little old ladies that had somehow been unaccounted for in the Christmas Giveaway. So naturally I went down to the warehouse, which was about as cold as Antarctica, and found some very beautiful new scarves for the ladies.

We were all ready to gear back up in early January when that dang Polar Vortex came swooping out of Canada.

IMG_3192

polar-vortex-winterThe Chicks are not Polar Vortex kind of people, especially in an unheated warehouse (well, there is the capability of heat if Chick One wasn’t too cheap to turn it on).  There weren’t enough layers of long underwear to get us to go to the warehouse. And when we got back, wouldn’t you know it. The Polar Vortex ate our Backflow Preventer, which keeps icky water from coming into the building (we had quite enough of that in 2010, thank you very much).

IMG_3244See that giant crack? We though we might just be able to put some duct tape over it, but our friendly plumber said that would not be advisable. And while he installed a new one (why do Backflow Preventers cost $800?), we had no water so that pushed us back a little more.

IMG_3245But now we have a brand spankin’ new Backflow Preventer and we’re pretty darn proud of that. Sometimes we just stand in the parking lot admiring it.

We’ve got lots in store for early 2014. We’re ecstatic that we’re getting a new website that will be as cool as the Chicks are and will work on mobile devices.  More on that as we get closer to the launch, but the picture at the top of this post is involved. And we’re relaunching our Partner Visit Days, when we venture out from the warehouse and see first-hand what our wonderful nonprofit partners do when they’re not picking up stuff at the warehouse. We’ll take you along.

And after a hiatus due to Chick One’s lack of imagination, we are revving up Bacon Wednesdays again. I know you won’t visit us on the blog to read about us putting together emergency hygiene kits (we’re doing that, too) or to marvel at the efficiency of our Backflow Preventer. But I think a little bacon love will lure you back.

Bacon Wednesday: Roasted tomato and bacon tart

The Chicks have had a bountiful harvest of tomatoes from the community garden at CRC World Headquarters this year. Chick One is the gardener. Chick Two is the consumer since she proudly states that “I don’t stick my hands in dirt on purpose.” That’s O.K. I find gardening – particularly in a small, controllable patch of dirt – very relaxing. And satisfying in an industrial area where vegetation is sparse.

The other day, I was leaving CRC and stopped to check if the front door was locked. There was a car in the parking lot and a woman sitting in it just staring at the tomato plants. I worried that I’d forgotten an appointment and approached her window. “Sorry,” she said. “I don’t know you. I have a meeting somewhere else in a half an hour and I just like looking at your garden.”

So since we have so many tomatoes I’m looking for different ways to use them and the roasted tomato and bacon tart just popped into my head. If you don’t want to make your own crust, you can use store bought. Really the tomatoes and bacon are the stars.

Roasted tomato and bacon tart

For the tomatoes:

6 medium tomatoes

1⁄2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Pinch of sugar

Heat the oven to 300 degrees. Slice the tomatoes in half, cutting off the tops and bottoms so the tomatoes sit flat in a rimmed cookie sheet lined with foil. Drizzle the olive oil over the tomatoes and sprinkle with salt, pepper and a pinch of sugar.

Roast for 3-4 hours until the tomatoes are soft and beginning to brown.

For the crust:

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 stick well-chilled Crisco baking stick

3 to 6 tablespoons ice cold water

Blend the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Cut the Crisco into 1/2 –inch cubes and add to the bowl. Pulse until the Crisco is approximately the size of peas. Add 3 tablespoons of ice water and pulse four or five times. If there is still unincorporated flour, add water a tablespoon at a time until you can pinch the dough and it holds together.

Form into a disk on plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour or overnight.

To roll out, place another piece of plastic wrap on top of the disk and roll the dough until it is large enough to fit in the tart pan with the dough slightly overlapping the top of the pan.

Prick the bottom of the dough with a fork and bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes. Allow to cool while you make the filling.

Filling:

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

¾ cup Swiss cheese, grated

9 strips of bacon, cooked until crisp

½ cup heavy cream

½ cup whole milk

2 eggs

Salt and pepper

Paint the bottom of the crust with the mustard. Top with cheese and make a single layer with the bacon. Top with roasted tomatoes.

Whisk together the cream, milk and eggs. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the mixture over the tomatoes until it reaches ¾ of the way up the crust (you will probably have more mixture than you need).

Bake the tart at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes.

Spiced bacon twists

Betsy, Catherine and Kim do love Bacon Wednesday

It is Bacon Wednesday and we have hit the friggin’ jackpot this week. Spiced bacon twists. They are better than pig candy. We ate a whole container full. All of them. I am going home and making some more for tomorrow, even though Thursday is not an officially sanctioned bacon day at CRC World Headquarters.

This recipe comes from the Tuck U Inn at Glick Mansion in Atchison, Kansas, via allrecipes.com. Here’s the link. By the way, the original recipe calls for 2 tablespoons of dry mustard, which I think is a misprint. Use 2 teaspoons instead.

Spiced Bacon Twists

1 cup packed light brown sugar

2 teaspoons dry mustard powder

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 pound sliced bacon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and set a wire rack over the foil. Use a baking sheet that has sides to catch the grease.

In a small bowl stir together the brown sugar, mustard powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and cayenne pepper. Press each slice of bacon into the mixture until coated. Twist each strip a few times and place on the baking rack.

Bake until bacon is browned and crisp enough to hold its shape, about 30-40 minutes.

Bacon Cinnamon Rolls

The three chicks always strive for innovation here at the world headquarters of the Community Resource Center, where I am the executive director, chief fundraiser and toilet cleaner. Especially on Bacon Wednesdays. Yes, every Wednesday we eat bacon in some form or another. Why would you not have Bacon Wednesdays? Section 3, Paragraph 28 in the CRC Employee Manual states: “Employees are required to eat bacon every Wednesday as a part of their job description. Year-end bonuses will be paid for employees who bring special effort to their presentation of bacon. Turkey bacon may be substituted for real bacon in the event of a religious restriction but it won’t taste as good.”

We map out Bacon Wednesday on our Command Central Board to ensure a variety of bacon offerings. Tomorrow it will be bacon and pimento cheese grilled sandwiches. Two weeks ago, we had bacon-wrapped club crackers with cocktails by the dock door (also in the Employee Manual, Section 5, Paragraph 17). Last week it was Betsy’s brilliant rendition of bacon cinnamon rolls. Here’s how you make them:

For each cinnamon roll (from a tube in the refrigerated section of your supermarket, bake one strip of bacon. Unroll each cinnamon roll into a long strip. Bake the bacon at 400 degrees until it’s done to your liking. Now here’s the trick. While the bacon is still warm and pliable, place a strip on the cinnamon roll dough and roll it up. Then bake the rolls according to the package directions.

Oh yes. Sweet and salty. Soft and crunchy. So inappropriate.