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Sunday, 8 January 2012


The word "bacon" is derived from the Old High German bacho, meaning "buttock", "ham" or "side of bacon".

The Dunmow Flitch started in 1111. This is a long-standing tradition established at Dunmow, Essex whereby married couples who stay together for a year and a day without arguing or regretting their marriage and can prove this are able to claim a gammon of bacon. The saying “Bring home the bacon” originates from this.

The first mention of bacon and eggs in literature in England was made by Andrew Borde in 1542 in his book, In A Compendyous Regyment, or a Dyetary of Health. He wrote: “Bacon is good for carters & plowmen I do sat that collopes (slices of bacon) and egges is holsome for them.”

In 1920, a pound of bacon cost 47 cents.

The earliest reference to a ‘bacon sandwich’ listed in the Oxford English Dictionary was by George Orwell in 1931 and the first mention of a ‘bacon sarnie’ was in the Daily Express on August 21, 1986.

American competitive eater Matt "the Megatoad" Stonie set a world record on February 22, 2015 by eating 182 rashers of bacon in five minutes.

A 250 pound pig yields around 23 pounds of bacon.

The average American consumes about 18 lbs of bacon per year.

Burger King uses approximately 1/2 million pounds of bacon every month in its restaurants.

Bacon possesses six different tastes in one, which elicits an addictive neurochemical response.

The popularity of bacon in the United States has given rise to a number of commercial products including bacon vodka, bacon peanut brittle, bacon toothpaste and bacon mints.

The difference between bacon and ham is primarily just the composition of the brine that is used to cure it.  Bacon brine has added curing ingredients, most notably sodium nitrite, and occasionally saltpeter. Also Sodium ascorbate or erythorbate are added to accelerate curing and stabilize color.

Pregnant women should eat bacon. Choline, which is found in bacon, helps fetal brain development.

When heated, sugars in bacon react with amino acids. This, along with the thermal breakdown of fats, leads to the aroma of cooking bacon.

Source Food For Thought: Extraordinary Little Chronicles of the World by Ed Pearce

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