Better with bacon - recipes


Makes 4 mini or 1 large loaf

Cauliflower and bacon gratin. Picture: Antoine de RasButternut and bacon pasta bake. Picture: Antoine de RasBacon, leek and brie quiche. Picture: Antoine de RasPear, bacon and goat's cheese salad. Picture: Antoine de RasOlive, bacon and cheese bread. Picture: Antoine de Ras

5ml salt

625ml flour

10ml baking powder

375ml grated Emmenthal cheese

100g black olives, pitted, sliced

100g green olives, pitted, sliced

45ml chopped parsley

30ml butter

200g black pepper streaky bacon

1 onion, finely chopped

200ml beer

50ml olive oil

3 eggs

Preheat ove to 180°C.

In a bowl, sift salt, flour and baking powder. Add in 300ml of the cheese, olives and parsley. Set aside.

Heat the butter in a frying pan and fry the bacon and onion for a few minutes. Drain in a sieve (this will stop the dough becoming soggy). Add to the dry ingredients.

In a jug, whisk together beer, oil and eggs and mix into the dry ingredients. Stir with a wooden spoon until combined.

Pour into four greased and base-lined mini loaf pans. Bake in the oven for 40-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the loaf comes out clean.

Ten minutes before the end of the baking time, sprinkle with the remaining cheese and bake.

Remove and cool slightly in pans before turning out on a cooling rack.

Delicious served warm with butter.


Serves 4

200g lean back bacon

20g butter

4 pears, cored, cut into wedges

15ml brown sugar

200g rocket

150g goat’s cheese

60ml chopped pistachio nuts


30ml red wine vinegar

30ml olive oil

10ml Dijon mustard

10ml honey

salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 200°C.

Place bacon on an oven tray and bake until crisp.

Heat a large frying pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter, add the pears and sprinkle with brown sugar.

Turning occasionally, cook for 4-5 minutes or until pears are lightly caramelised.

Remove from heat.

Arrange rocket leaves on serving plate, then place the bacon and the pears on top.

Crumble over goat’s cheese and sprinkle over pistachios.

Drizzle with the dressing and serve immediately.

DRESSING: Combine all ingredients and mix well.


Shortcrust pastry

375ml flour

2ml salt

100g cold butter, cut into cubes

1 egg

ice water to mix


40g butter

1 punnet of baby leeks, sliced

250g back bacon, finely chopped

45ml wholegrain mustard

150g brie, thinly sliced

4 eggs, lightly whisked

200ml cream

salt and pepper

PASTRY: Put flour, salt and butter in a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Add the egg and enough water to make a soft, but not sticky, dough. Remove and knead for a minute. Cover with cling wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Roll out pastry on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle, about 3mm thick.

Use pastry to line a shallow 10x34cm quiche tin, with removable base. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to rest.

Preheat oven to 180°C. Remove pastry from fridge and bake blind for 20 minutes.

FILLING: Melt the butter in a pan over medium heat until foaming. Add the leeks and the bacon and cook, stirring, for 10 minutes until the leeks soften.

Spread mustard over the partially cooked pastry base. Top with the leek mixture and half the brie slices.

Whisk the eggs and cream in a bowl. Season and pour into the pastry case.

Top with the rest of the brie slices. Bake for 25-30 minutes until just set.

Serve warm.


Serves 6

15ml vegetable oil

400g thick bacon rashers, cubed

2 onions, halved and sliced

4 medium potatoes, unpeeled and thickly sliced

600g cauliflower cut into bite-size florets

100g grated Gruyère cheese

125ml chopped chives

250ml cream

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Heat oil in a pan and fry bacon for 10 minutes until starting to crisp. Add the onion and sizzle for another 10 minutes until soft and golden.

Meanwhile, tip the potatoes into a large pot of boiling, salted water and cook for 10 minutes. Add the cauliflower and boil for a further 5 minutes. Drain into a colander.

In an ovenproof dish, layer the potato and cauliflower, and then scatter over the bacon and onion, a small handful of cheese, a sprinkling of chives and season with salt and pepper.

Drizzle with a little cream. Continue until all the layers are finished, pour over remaining cream and scatter with cheese and chives.

Bake for 30 minutes until bubbling. Remove from oven and set aside for 1 minute to rest.

Serve straight from the dish.


Serves 4-6

800g butternut, cut into thin wedges

a few sprigs of thyme

coarse salt

2 red onions, cut into wedges

250g streaky bacon

200g penne pasta

30ml flour

500ml milk

80ml crumbled blue cheese

125ml grated mature cheddar

125ml grated Parmesan plus extra for topping

2ml white pepper

Combine butternut, oil and thyme on a lined baking tray. Season well. Roast for 15 minutes.

Add onion wedges and roast for a further 15 minutes.

Place bacon on a greased baking tray and bake for 10-15 minutes until golden. Chop the bacon.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain and return to the pot. Add bacon and butternut to the pasta.

In a clean saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat until foaming. Add flour and cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes. Gradually whisk in the milk until smooth. Stir over medium heat for 5 minutes or until the mixture thickens. Stir in the cheeses and season with pepper.

Pour over the pasta mixture and stir to combine.

Grease an ovenproof dish. Spoon in the pasta mixture and sprinkle with extra Parmesan.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden.