bacon

bacon, flesh of hogs—especially from the sides, belly, or back—that has been preserved by being salted or pickled and then dried with or without wood smoke. Traditionally, the process consisted of soaking the pork in brine or rubbing it in a salt mixture by hand, then smoking the sides in smoke from an open chimney. It sometimes took three or four months. Bacon is still home cured in some rural communities, but the bulk of its manufacture is carried on in large industrial meatpacking plants equipped to slaughter, dress, cure, smoke, and sell on a large scale. Bacon refers to different cuts in different countries. In the United States it usually means the side between the fifth rib and the hipbone. In Europe, the word bacon generally refers to one half of a fattened pig. Bacon has one of the highest fat contents of any cut of meat.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

More on bacon from Fact Monster:

  • Bacon's Rebellion - Bacon's Rebellion Bacon's Rebellion, popular revolt in colonial Virginia in 1676, led by ...
  • Nathaniel Bacon - Bacon, Nathaniel Bacon, Nathaniel, 1647–76, leader of Bacon's Rebellion in colonial ...
  • Henry Bacon - Bacon, Henry Bacon, Henry, 1866–1924, American architect, b. Watseka, Ill. He began his ...
  • Leonard Bacon - Bacon, Leonard Bacon, Leonard, 1802–81, American Congregational minister, b. Detroit, Mich. ...
  • Peggy Bacon - Bacon, Peggy Bacon, Peggy, 1895–1987, American illustrator, caricaturist, and etcher, b. ...

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Food and Cooking