Slab bacon is pork belly that has already been cured with spices like molasses, brown sugar and red pepper, but before it has been cut into strips. This gives a greater flexibility of cooking with bacon, since you can cut or dice it as thick or as thin as you desire. While not found in every meat case, many butchers can special order slab bacon for you. It typically still has the pig's skin, or rind, on it, which can be easily removed prior to cooking.
Remove rind of bacon by sliding a knife between the meat and the rind of the slab bacon and pushing the blade of the knife away from you while you pull on the rind. (Reference 1)
Cut the slab bacon to your desired amount and thickness lengthwise. For soups, stews and salads, try dicing the slab bacon into large chunks, called lardons (Reference 2).
Wrap whatever slab bacon remains uncut with a cloth kitchen towel. Plastic wrap may sour the bacon. (Reference 1).
Saute your cut bacon in a cast iron frying pan on medium heat for up to five minutes. Turn the bacon over and cook on it's other side for another two.
Remove bacon from frying pan with fork and place between layers of paper towels to absorb grease.
You can cut up the discarded pork rind and fry it separately to make fresh pork cracklings. Be sure to remove any hair left on the rind with a razor.
Fay Reynolds was first published in 2004 for the "Columbia Missourian." She has worked as a critic for the "San Antonio Current," "Austin Chronicle" and "Complex" magazines, and as a senior editor at Vintage Foundation Publications. Reynolds holds a B.A. in English from the University of Missouri and is pursuing her M.A. in creative writing from the University of Texas at Austin.