Why does bacon, and specifically, the fat that's released, foam/froth when you pan fry it?

Every time I fry bacon in a pan, by the time I'm halfway through a batch I can't even see the bacon anymore from all the foam. I'm curious why it does this. I can't seem to find any information about it, but one site vaguely implied that 'real' thick cut salt-cured smoked bacon doesn't do this, but the vacuum-sealed kind that's prepared in brine (the usual stuff you grab at the supermarket) does.

6 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Commercially processed cured meats contain sugar/ dextrose/ fructose/ maple/ honey/ etc.. Both these ingredients have a natural froth to them and that is why you find your situation occurring. People who can and preserve foods like jellies and jams are aware of this fact more so than most, but us chefs do or should as well. The frothing occurrs from the natural enzymes that are contained in the fructose/dextrose and sugars are released in the heating/cooking process and give off gases which combined with the syrup (from the melting of the sugars) makes those foamy bubbles. This foam does not mean the food is spoiled and will die down on its own. I hope this was useful.

    Source(s): 25years experience professional chef/caterer
  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    Bacon Foam

  • 1 decade ago

    I think you are right in thinking it's the brine cooking off /boiling.

    "Unfortunately ‘mass produced’ bacon today is not only immersed in liquid but pumped with water and phosphates to speed up the process and add yield. The more supermarkets squeezed their vendors on price, the more water has been added. True flavour has been sacrificed for profit. "

  • 1 decade ago

    I'm not exactly sure why, but I'm sure it has to do w/ the rendering process. When I see that white foam on the bacon strips, I know they are done. If you let it go much past having the foam on them, the bacon will burn. Good question.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • 1 decade ago

    thats the water burning off. when fat and water are mixed it bubbles until the water evaporats

  • 1 decade ago

    probally it's the fat burning off

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.