Wendy’s is Testing New “Black Label” Burgers

It’s pretty common knowledge that when a fast food chain has a new burger they don’t just release it nation wide and cross their fingers that it will be a hit. After it goes through extensive taste testing in their own privet kitchens the food the burger is then sent out to a “test market.”

A test market is when they pick a couple areas of the country and sell the burger exclusively in those areas. Then based on the sells they decide if it’s worth it to release it nation wide.

All chain restaurants do this and it’s a good way to test the waters before jumping in but I do have a slight problem with it. It used to be that if some small town in California got to test a special burger I wouldn’t find out about it until it was given the go a head and released across the country and if the burger failed I would never know it even existed but the internet has changed all that.

Thanks to the internet I now know that Wendy’s is testing out a couple new burgers they are calling their “Black Label” burgers. The “Santa Fe” burger is a quarter-pounder with pepper-jack cheese and guacamole and the “Bacon Portobello” is a quarter-pounder with mushrooms, muenster cheese, bacon, tomato, and pepper sauce. Those sound freaking amazing and I would love to sink my teeth into them but unfortunately they are only available in Columbus, Ohio and Wichita, Kansas.

So now I have to sit around and hope all those Columbus and Wichita people buy enough of those burgers so I can get a shot at eating them. I can’t stand having the fate of my dinner in the hands of people I’ve never met. Screw this I’m not going to sit idly by while others make poor combo selections and possible kill the “Black Label” burgers before they even have a chance to live. Columbus is only 3 and half hours from my house. If anyone needs me I’ll be in my car, driving.

Sweet and Spicy Nutella-Coated Bacon

A couple weeks ago on Bacon Live we came up with the idea to put Nutella on bacon for a fast chocolate cover bacon. Like every other idea we come up with we were too lazy to actually test it out and once again we’ve been beaten to the punch.

The Detroit Free Press now has a bacon/Nutella recipe on their website but this one takes a bit further by adding some chili powder and black pepper to give it an awesome kick.

If you have any recipes that combine the amazingness of bacon with the strangely addictive taste of Nutella let us know in the comments below.

Diabetes Y’all! Bacon Lover Paula Deen Comes Out

Celebrity chef Paula Deen recently made an announcement that she’s been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. For anyone that’s actually seen her show this comes as no surprise. Paula is known for making good old fashion home cooking and that means lots of butter, red meats, and grease. In other words it means she makes food people actually want to eat.

A lot of people are contributing her diabetes to the food she cooks but I don’t think that’s very fair. Sure she featured The Lady’s Brunch burger on her show, a burger topped with egg and bacon served between two glazed doughnuts and her restaurant “Lady and Sons” in Savanna Georgia has an all you can eat buffet featuring fried chicken, gravy, and butter soaked collared greens but even Paula herself knows her food isn’t healthy.

Paula never once made the claim that her food was healthy and actually says that people need to enjoy her creations in moderation. Just because her show “Paula’s Best Dishes” is on almost everyday doesn’t mean you should eat what she’s cooking every day. It’s called self control.

Type 2 Diabetes isn’t caused from any one type of food. If that was the case a person could just cut out that food and be good to go. One of the biggest contributing factors in getting “the sugars” is being overweight and yes a case could be made that Paula Dean style food makes people over weight but once again that’s only if you let it.

Paula has said that she will not change the way she cooks and I for one applaud her for that. Every time I turn around I see more and more of the delicious food I grew up with disappearing. It’s like if something isn’t the healthiest choice it should be thrown away and never aloud to be eaten.

No one is saying BBQ bacon cheese burgers are healthy but that doesn’t mean you can’t have one every once and awhile. It all comes down personal responsibility. Paula Deen is a good chef and she understands what people love when it comes to food so don’t just abandon her because her recipes are unhealthy instead use her recipes to treat yourself once a week or so.

What’s Up With All This Hardwood Smoking?

As we pointed out on an episode of Bacon Live, Burger King has introduced new thick cut bacon that they describe as being “Hardwood Smoked.” This kind of confused us because most companies aren’t that vague with their bacon descriptions. In fact most companies seem proud to tell you what type of wood they use in their smoking process.

Wendy’s went all out to let you know their bacon was Apple Wood smoked, Dunkin Donuts proudly said in their commercials that their bacon was smoked with Cherry Wood, and even though Denny’s is using the same bacon they always have they started letting people know that it was Hickory Smoked but some companies just don’t’ want us to know what type of wood they use.

I’m not just picking on Burger King; long time bacon producer Oscar Mayer also lists their bacon as being “Hardwood Smoked.” So that got me thinking, what exactly is Hardwood? (and stop laughing right now or you’ll be excused from the class.) According to the Wikipedia entry for “wood” all wood from the dicotyledons family are considered hardwood. That basically means if it has broad leaves and flowers like Oak it’s a hardwood. So when a company says it uses hardwood that means it could be using one of almost 100 different woods or a combination of them.

There are reasons why a company might choose to go with a lesser known wood or a mixture of different woods. It might be they fill they get the best flavor from those woods or maybe it is a cost thing where they don’t want to inject smoke flavoring but it’s not cost affective to use Apple Wood.

Whatever the reason is they need to stop advertising it as “Hardwood Smoked.” When you have restaurants gloating about the wood they use and then you see some company slap Hardwood on their label it makes them seem like they’re just trying to jump on the band wagon without improving their bacon.

If you don’t want to tell us what wood you use because it’s a cheaper wood or because you use a mixture and “hickory/apple/cherry/oak smoked” wont fit on the label, that’s fine. Just leave it off. Trust me if you make a quality product just labeling it as bacon is enough for people to buy it

Can Bacon Make it Better? Um… Yes!

I was bouncing around the internet and I came across this blog called Mancave Daily where he put up a somewhat troubling post called “5 Foods Even Bacon Can’t Make Better.” He starts off by saying he is tired of all the bacon lust out there today and that even though bacon is delicious it’s not the most wonderful food in the world. What the F?

How could a blog called Mancave Daily not fall down and worship the one food God created specifically with Man in mind, bacon! There is a reason why people “lust” for bacon as he puts it, because there has never been a more perfect food in the history of mankind. People don’t just like bacon, they live for it.

Now on to his claims. Here at Mr. Baconpants we have tried to come up with a food that bacon doesn’t go with and we just can’t think of any but Mancave man has come up with a list of 5 that include, SPAM, Ham, Rice Cakes, Liver, and Chocolate Chip Cookies. I’m going to talk a little about each one of these but first let me point out the SPAM is short for Shoulder Pork Ham so I’m going to count ham and SPAM as one item and officially change his post to, “4 Foods Even Bacon Can’t Make Better.”

4. SPAM/Ham

His augment for this is that SPAM’s disgusting flavor will drown out the bacon and Ham doesn’t work because “Adding a part of the pig to another part of the pig actually does nothing to improve either” and that it would be “pork overkill.”

Well guess what SPAM and bacon do go together. In fact they go together so well that the good people at SPAM saved us some time by combining the two for us.

The argument that pig doesn’t go with pig is about as crazy as saying Wendy’s French fires don’t go with a Frosty. Check out this link for a recipe for a ham and bacon sandwich. (Yes I said “recipe”, I guess some people can’t even make a sandwich without directions.) Or ask anyone that’s ever had bacon wrapped pork tenderloin if pig goes with pig.

3. Rice Cakes

I do agree with him that rice cakes are like flavorless pieces of insulation but what better place to show off the amazing flavor of bacon than on a blank canvas like Rice Cakes. You could wrap the cakes in bacon then bake them on low heat allowing the grease to be soaked up by the dry rice there for infusing it with bacon flavor. Sure it might over power the flavor of the rice cake but as I stated before Rice Cakes are flavorless so adding flavor would make them better.

2. Liver

I almost spit my Bacon Bloody Marry all over my laptop when I saw this one. I spent nights lying awake before family events wondering if my wife’s aunt was going to make her very addictive bacon wrapped chicken livers. They are so good I can’t eat just one.

Reading a little further into his post I realized the reason why he thinks bacon doesn’t go with liver is because he hates liver. There is no more to his argument than that. Look there’s one or two foods in this word that I don’t like but I can still put my bias aside for two seconds to understand why someone might enjoy it. Just because you don’t like the flavor of Liver doesn’t mean everyone hates it.

1. Chocolate Chip Cookies

This one is the biggest joke of them all. He doesn’t even give an argument. All he says is to keep your bacon away from his cookies. His closed mind just sees the words cookie and bacon and he goes running for the hills like a caveman seeing fire for the first time. I feel kind of sorry for people that are so stuck in their ways they won’t even try something like bacon in cookies. They will never know the joy of sweet and savory together. Seriously dude just try them here’s a recipe. If you don’t like them that’s fine just spit them out but at least try them.

So there were 4 foods that supposedly bacon can’t make better and I just showed you the opposite and didn’t even break a sweat. I would like a challenge, so if you think you know a food that bacon can’t improve then comment below so I can tell you how you’re wrong.

Southern-Fried Egg Rolls Recipe With Bacon

This recipe looks awesome! You all know I love bacon but you might not know that I also love egg rolls. Chef Marsha Bradley has combined the two and given them a southern kick.

These egg rolls are sure to be a hit at any tailgating or party event and this recipe makes about 3 dozen of them. That’s enough egg rolls for your whole party or for my lunch. Check out recipe and video to see how it’s done. Let us know what you think in the comments below or in the Mr. Baconpants Community.

Sacramento’s Bacon Fest is this Weekend!

Man, every time I turn around another Bacon Fest is popping up. Pretty soon there’s going to be a Bacon Event every month of the year. Not that I’m complaining. I just wish I could afford the air fair to check them all out.

The newest Fest is based in Sacramento. Local musician Brain Guido and Managing Editor for Sacramento News & Review have teamed up with five local restaurants for the first ever Sacramento Bacon Fest but unlike most Bacon Fests this one seems to be more of a weekend filled with bacon activities then just one day of pork belly love.

After seeing the success of the Blue Ribbon Bacon Fest in Des Moines and the Chicago Bacon Fest , Guido thought, why not Sacramento.

The event runs from January 20 through the 22nd with each day having a bacon inspired events at local restaurants.

  • Jan 20th -is Kevin Bacon Tribute Night at Luigi’s Slice where you can enjoy a special Bacon Supreme Pizza while local bands entertain your ears with covers of songs from Kevin Bacon movies.
  • Jan 21st -You can get your day started with a Bacon inspired Breakfast/Brunch at Magpie Caterers Market and Café but get there early because it’s only open from 7:30am until the food is gone.
  • Jan 21st -Starting at 4pm Pangaea Two Brews Café is having “Bacon in Beers.” Dinners will get a four item bacon inspired menu with each item being paired with a beer. Also they will be serving beer with bacon in the glass.
  • Jan 22nd -Brunch at The Golden Bear. It starts at 10am and will have many bacon dishes including a couple bacon cocktails for those that like to get an early start on the partying.
  • Jan 22nd -End the Fest with a Chef Competition at Mulvaney’s B&L Pig Next Door. Local celebrities will judge bacon-inspired meals created by local chefs and small bacon plates and wine will be served.

The Bacon Fests I’m more used to consist of one day where people over indulge on various bacon dishes all while washing them down with a good beer. Although I like the concept of making the Fest an entire weekend and highlighting local restaurants I would really like to see an all day event like Blue Ribbon Bacon Fest does. But hey it’s their first year so it makes sense to start out small and I’m sure everyone will have a great time. Then next year they can expand and make it even better.

For more information click here and if anyone out there is in the Sacramento area and is going to the Fest, feel free to send sent us some pictures and video so we can let the rest of the world see what Sacramento has to offer.