Book Review: Beyond Bacon: Paleo Recipes that Respect the Whole Hog

By : | 1 Comment | On : July 2, 2013 | Category : Nutrition 101

finished meatballs

beyond bacon

Looking through the new book, Beyond Bacon, I was struck first by the gorgeous photography! Really, it is fantastic. Stacy Toth and Mattthew McCarry are also known as the “Paleo Parents” and have a successful book already under their belt. Stacy also runs a great podcast, which I’ve had the honor of being a guest on. In this new book, they explore recipes that “Respect the Whole Hog”.

I love the cover. I love the pictures. I love the concept. Inspiring people to use more parts of the animal is what is needed, as hundreds of folks get turned onto the Paleo diet every week and discover that fat is good for you. Bacon is great, but there is only so much bacon on a pig. We need to be rendering lard, making more sausage, and learning about ways to use all of the other cuts that are out there.

There’s an inspiring forward from Joel Salatin of Polyface Farms, one of my heros in the farming world. Stacy and Matt stress the use of pastured pork (a technique I use on my own farm) where the pigs can run free and also produce healthier meat and fat. They explain the different cuts and where they come from on the pig, and help you figure out the best questions to ask your butcher.

In the recipes section, they show you how you can make your own bacon, how to render lard, and have some fantastic looking soups, stews, braised and roasted dishes. I decided to make the Swedish Meatballs.

3 meats

 I happened to have some of my own ground lamb and pork, plus some grass fed beef sent to me from TX Bar Organics. I brought out the meat to come to room temperature so it would be easier to mix with the other ingredients.


I also had some recently rendered (and bright white) leaf lard to saute the onion and later, the meatballs with.


The recipe was easy to follow and didn’t have too many ingredients. I first sauteed some onion in a little lard, then added the three meats, some almond flour and a couple of spices. I rolled the meatballs into tablespoon sized balls, quickly browned them then finished them in the oven until they were cooked through. Pretty simple and easy.

finished meatballs

The end result was a complete crowd pleaser. I had another family visiting, and their kids devoured them. The recipe made enough for the adults, kids and some leftover. We had some garlicky greens and mashed sweet potatoes on the side and it was the perfect dinner. The flavor was lovely from the different meats plus the warmth of the spices. They weren’t spicy hot, it was more like a comforting warmth. I really liked them and I will definitely make these again.

I highly suggest you get yourself a copy of Beyond Bacon and expand your knowledge of the amazing dishes you can make with pork!  Click here to order through my affiliate store.

  1. posted by Adventures in Dressmaking on August 20, 2013

    Woohoo!!! I just got a copy of the book to review as well (posted it here and I am soooo impressed! I agree the photos are amazing and make everything seem so wonderful. I can’t wait to try so many of the recipes!!

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