Learning to Cook with Marion Cunningham… and bacon

September 16, 2010 5:00 am Published by 2 Comments

Bacon is a good staple to have around. If there are only one or two of you in your household, don’t be afraid to buy a whole pound. You can break the slices up and make packages of ? pound or less; wrap them tightly in plastic and freeze them. It’s handy to have some bacon when you want a good Sunday breakfast, bacon and eggs for supper, or a BLT for lunch, and it makes a fine flavoring for dried bean and cabbage dishes, as well as for soups and pastas.”

Those wise words come from the intelligent and matronly Marion Cunningham. When I moved out of my parents’ house to go to college, they made time in between cheering and celebrations to bestow some gifts upon me, and one of them was Learning to Cook with Marion Cunningham. This book is full of common-sense, easily practiced cooking advice and great, accessible recipes. She answers questions you might be embarrassed to ask about basic cooking staples, like scrambled eggs and hamburgers, but hey if no one teaches you that stuff, you’ll never learn for yourself. For instance, the less you handle hamburger meat, the better, cause the oils in your hands dry the meat out and make it tough. See? Good advice for aspiring grill masters and seasoned chefs alike. The sign of a good cookbook is when it’s covered with spatters and stains from lots of use in a messy kitchen; as you can see from my distressed version, it’s served me well for many years.

And of course, her recipe is peppered with delectable bacon recipes. Here is one of my favorites, offered in tribute and with some minor changes I made. Don’t be alarmed: I may not be Cordon Bleu material, but with a meal like this, you pretty much can’t go wrong. If anyone could, I could, and I didn’t, so you won’t either.

 Avocado and Bacon Super Supper Salad Sandwiches

Mix together the dressing: 1.5 tsp lemon juice, .25 cup sour cream, .25 cup mayo. (Already you know you’re in for something good. Tasting the dressing is fine, but don’t eat it with a spoon, people will look at you and you’ll hate yourself later.)

Fry up .5 pound of bacon (about 8 slices).

Discard the roots from 1 bunch of green onions and cut the white parts into thin slices, .25 inch or so.

Peel and seed 2 ripe avocados and cut lengthwise into .25 inch slices.

Rinse 1 head of iceberg lettuce. Cut the lettuce in half from top to bottom, remove the core, and then slice into bite-size pieces.

Toast and butter some slices of whole-wheat bread. Pile 1 cup of chopped lettuce, avocado slices, and bacon pieces on top. Salt and pepper bacon slices, spoon dressing on top, and top off with sliced green onion. Serves your 4 new best friends.

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