So I recently ran across a new bacon (at least to me) and wanted to put it to the test, and that’s just what I did. The product is the Hickory and Sage Benevolent Bacon by Sweet Earth.
At first purchase, I was intrigued by this product for the sheer fact that it was mostly seitan based, and while some are seriously afflicted by this ingredient (the gluten intolerant), I personally happen to tolerate this ingredient better than soy. After first smell, I was totally stoked, most of the vegan bacon available today is completely rank in the olfactory sense upon opening and cooking but still maintaining solid payoff if you can get past that. Being stoked and intrigued, I quickly grabbed it up and fried it up. One of the best ways I know to try a product is at plain-bite. Of course with some products and dishes, you really need pairings and proper preparations in order to achieve it at perfect taste. So while I tried it off hand, I also added it into a sandwich.
After cooking it up and trying it a couple of ways, my final review is: really good [on a scale from bad to excellent]!! While the product hits all of the flavor notes you’d expect from a bacon and is very friendly in the way of the main ingredient, I have to admit it misses the mark texturally. While I added in plenty of oil to a ceramic saute pan, the bacon never really crisped to desired perfection, which in hindsight should have been expected given that seitan is such a sturdy, soft meat. Having said that, this is by far the best bacon product that I have ever made at home (*note- I’m truly excited to try coconut bacon, so I’m still leaving hope for that middle ground). These slices pack so much healthy protein and fiber in just a few slices, it makes it confusing to wonder why anyone would choose anything else! So if you haven’t had the pleasure, I highly recommend this product for those where texture and crunch is not the mainstay, such as: in your scramble, diced on a salad or potato, or wrapped on a skewer where that flexibility holds it’s own.
If you’ve tried baking this or found a way to get that crisp with this product, please leave a comment below, and let’s share and enjoy more together.