How to Render Bacon
Rendering is a simple technique used to melt fat from diced meat. The result? Crispy perfection.
Rendering is a simple technique used to melt fat from diced meat (usually pork or bacon). The result is mall, crisp bits known as lardons [LAHR-don]. Lardons are used to garnish soups, salads, eggs — wherever you want a bit of meaty flavor. And the rendered fat is great for sautéing vegetables.
Originating in French kitchens, lardons are traditionally made with slab bacon — an unsliced chunk of smoked bacon. But to make lardons at home, thick-sliced bacon works fine. Since the strips are already about ¼-inch thick, all you need to do is to dice them. If a subtler smoky flavor is what you want, blanch the bits in boiling water before rendering.
To render, cook the bacon in a skillet over low heat. The process is slow (10–15 minutes) but it’s the only way to completely extract the fat from the meat without charring it.
Once the fat is melted out, remove the rendered bacon pieces with a slotted spoon and drain them on a paper-towel-lined plate.