PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- For many people, it would be hard to imagine making bacon any better. It's considered one of the most versatile foods on the planet - ready to go for breakfast, lunch, dinner and even dessert!
Americans eat an average of 18 pounds of bacon a year - that's more than five billion pounds for the whole U.S. Creative business people are finding ways to tap into the bacon-loving market.
Many of our viewers have seen the Perfect Bacon Bowl commercial on TV and wrote to ask us to find out if it really works. KDKA-TV Morning News Anchor and Does It Really Do That? reporter Jennifer Antkowiak found a family to help her give it a try.
Tracy Swanson says her children, Brady and Megan, have wanted the Perfect Bacon Bowl since they saw it on TV. They love bacon any time of day. Tracy admits she's even packed it in their lunches.
Jen asked Megan where she'd be on a scale, if one was someone who didn't like bacon very much at all and 10 was someone who's pretty crazy for bacon. Megan giggled and said, "About a thousand!"
Immediately, Tracy and Jen noticed there aren't many parts or pieces to worry about.
The Perfect Bacon Bowl is self-contained, a raised shape with a ridge around the bottom that's supposed to collect grease during cooking.
Tracy said the Perfect Bacon Bowls seemed sturdy, but a little smaller than she expected.
To make each bacon bowl, you need three strips of bacon. You cut the first one in half, and place the halves in an "X" to form the bottom. Then you wrap two strips, one at a time, around that to form the sides.
The instructions tell you to make sure the strips overlap, and to press the edges together to make sure they stick.
The bowls can be used in the microwave, toaster oven, or oven. Stacy says she'd most like to use them in her microwave, so that's what they tried.
The instructions say to place the Perfect Bacon Bowl on a plate, cover to prevent splattering, cook for two minutes and 30 seconds, and then at 30 second intervals until it's done the way you like it.
It doesn't looked cooked at two and a half minutes, and Tracy ends up cooking it at intervals for six minutes until Megan said it was done enough for her.
The Perfect Bacon Bowl really did collect a lot of grease.
On the commercial, the bacon bowl slides right off, ready to fill. It wasn't that easy for Tracy. She used a plastic fork to loosen it.
"It's a little bit of a mess, and this is not... I'm having a hard time getting this off," she said.
The instructions say that well-done bacon bowls may stick, and if that happens, to let them cool a little bit before trying to remove.
Megan wanted the first one filled with mac and cheese. It was crunchy just like in the commercial, it held well, and she said it was good. In fact, she asked for another before she was done with the first.
Tracy made another one, cooking at longer intervals this time, up to seven minutes. This one didn't slide off either, actually melting the plastic fork a bit while Tracy was trying to get it off.
Finally though, Brady got his mac and cheese-filled bacon bowl, and loved it.
Not crazy about the idea of having to cook one at a time when everyone was wanting more right away, Tracy decided to try a couple in the oven. The instructions estimate a 35-minute cooking time this way.
While that was going, Tracy made some more in the oven.
The kids wanted dessert, it's a recipe that came in the little instruction booklet - bacon bowls filled with bananas, whipped cream and chocolate syrup.
Megan thoroughly enjoyed it, saying she could eat five of them.
After more than 40 minutes in the oven the bacon bowls looked nearly done, but weren't cooked much at all on the inside.
So, the Perfect Bacon Bowl claims to be a fun, fast way to enjoy toasty, tasty, perfect bacon bowls in minutes. Does it really do that?
Tracy says the process was messier and took longer than it seemed on TV, but we did get bacon bowls. The kids said they'd buy it. Tracy would not.
For more information on the Perfect Bacon Bowl, visit their website here.
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