At Memphis in May this past year, I had the opportunity to meet Ken Haviland, president of the Real Canadian Bacon Company. He was kind enough to send me samples of his product (peameal bacon) for review. My intent was to give them a thorough review right before Christmas. However, I was not able to get to it due to unforeseen circumstances. I was sent a variety of slices (or shingles), bone-in chops, and a whole roast. I have tried the slices and the chops, and let me tell you… DELICIOUS!!
What is Peameal Bacon?
Peameal bacon is also referred to as “Canadian bacon”. However, it’s nothing like the Canadian bacon that most Americans are familiar with. Peameal bacon is made from pork loin (trimmed so that the fat cap layer is extremely thin) that has been cured, traditionally with a sweet pickling cure. The cured pork loin remains unsmoked. While it was once rolled in ground dried yellow peas to prevent moisture escape, it is now rolled in cornmeal. The idea for peameal bacon can be traced back to emigrants from Wiltshire, England — the curing process is traditionally known as a Wiltshire cure. The flavor of peameal bacon closely resembles country ham, but more moist and not quite as salty. Peameal bacon should be cooked to approximately a medium-rare level of doneness in order to retain its moister.
Trying It Out
I asked some of my Facebook friends how I should cook up the slices of peameal bacon that I had. The answer was pretty unanimous: fry it up. Breakfast for me one morning was a simple one of pancakes and peameal bacon. Yum!!
I decided to do some further research to see how else peameal bacon slices are used. And what I discovered (thanks to Serious Eats) is that in Toronto, the St. Lawrence Market is apparently the place to go for peameal bacon sandwiches. Consisting of peameal bacon on a Kaiser bun with mustard, the sandwich itself may not be much to look at. However, what it lacks in eye candy it more than makes up in taste.
I did my own take on the peameal bacon sandwich that I’m calling the “Hot Hoser”. The “Hot Hoser” is a toasted sandwich consisting of fried peameal bacon slices, a fried egg, shredded mozzarella cheese, and El Diablo Texas Chili mustard. Salty, spicy goodness!
In addition to the slices, I had some beautiful looking French cut peameal chops. I grilled these to a succulent medium rare doneness, and they were fabulous! Because I wanted to add a couple of layers of flavor to the chops, I decided to drizzle the chops with a finishing drizzle. The first time cooking the chops, I put together a quick maple port glaze.
While I liked the flavor of the maple port glaze, it sort of got lost in the flavors of the chop. I needed something a little bolder. Enter the El Diablo Pancho sauce.
This sauce is a variation on the Pancho’s green sauce that people in the Memphis area are most likely very familiar with. It is most often used as a salad dressing, but the flavors worked for me on the pork chop.
- ½ cup El Diablo Jalapeno mustard
- ½ cup olive oil
- ½ cup sugar
- ⅓ cup white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- Combine all ingredients until fully incorporated.
- Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Longer refrigeration times will allow the flavors to better combine.
I’m looking forward to trying out the peameal roast very soon. If the flavors of the peameal bacon slices and peameal chops are any indicator, I will not be remotely disappointed!
For more information, including links to purchase, you can visit the Real Canadian Bacon Company’s website at http://www.realcanadianbacon.com.
(NOTE: The header image at the beginning of the post is from the Real Canadian Bacon Company’s website.)