It is impossible to cook bacon without stealing a strip, a lardon, or a bit during the process. I wouldn’t even call it stealing; as the person doing the cooking, it’s your right to enjoy a little bacon bonus, as a treat for your hard work. Trouble arises, however, if you eat a large (or even small) portion of the bacon that was meant to be used in a recipe.
If you eat a portion of the bacon meant for a potato salad, a BLT, or even a classic bacon-and-egg breakfast, your meal suffers, becoming sadder, blander, and less bacon-y as a result. Imagine if I tried to make these bacon crackers with only half a pound of bacon, or this potato salad with only three ounces of guanciale. Tragic! Envision sitting down to a plate of “bacon and eggs” only to find someone had already consumed your portion of rashers. Crushing! Obviously, there is an easy, elegant solution to this conundrum: Simply cook more bacon than the recipe — or society! — tells you that you need. Do this every time without fail, and your life and cooking will improve.
If you need to justify this practise with something other than desire, tell yourself you are doing it for quality control reasons. You won’t be lying — you do need to make sure your bacon is properly rendered and crisp as can be, and you simply cannot know for certain these markers are being met without a taste test. By adding an extra couple strips, a few more ounces, or just throwing the whole package in there, you are ensuring the bacon in your dish is both perfect and plentiful, which is honestly your responsibility as the cook.
If you want more bacony goodness, but aren’t wild on meat, here’s a hack for how to turn your banana peels into ‘bacon’.