2013 Winning Recipe: Bacon Wrapped Lamb Loins

Congratulations to Chef Stephen “Bubba” Frank of The Turtle Restaurant in Brownwood, Texas, and Craig and Maggy Jones of Capra Foods in Goldthwaite, Texas, for winning the second annual Bacon Bash Texas cook-off! Their Bacon-Wrapped Lamb Loins (produced by Capra Foods), Bacon Polenta, and Bacon Corn Salad garnished with Bacon & Feta Cream Sauce wowed the judges and the crowd!

About the winners:

Chef Stephen “Bubba” Frank, a Chicago native, is the Executive Chef at The Turtle Restaurant in Brownwood, TX. Commonly known as leaders of gourmet food in central/west Texas, Chef Bubba and The Turtle Restaurant strive to push the culinary boundaries, offering unique flavors that span the globe. Dedicated to the slow food movement, The Turtle Restaurant tries to use as many local, sustainable products as possible including Pederson’s Natural Farms Bacon out of Hamilton, Texas, and Capra Lamb out of Goldthwaite, Texas.

Craig & Maggy Jones began raising Dorper sheep in 2006 to augment their goat flock. They immediately recognized the value in the inherent hardiness of the breed, their exceptional mothering instincts, their ability to thrive on native pasture, and their resistance to parasites and other things that make raising livestock difficult. Not to mention, they have a healthier respect for boundaries (i.e. fences) than the goats! Three years later, in 2009, Craig & Maggy started Capra Foods as a way to offer sustainability to their fellow Dorper ranchers, year round financial stability, well deserved attention and value to the Dorper breed, and a consistently outstanding quality meat to consumers.

And, now, for the winning recipe:

Fire up your grill or smoker!


Bacon Corn Salad

  • 4 Slices Pederson’s Bacon, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 ears of corn, grilled and cut off the cob (just shuck the corn and either grill them over high heat until lightly charred on all sides, or smoke them for about a half hour. Then stand up the ears, one at a time, and cut downwards on all sides to remove the kernels)
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste

Cook bacon in a medium frying pan over medium heat until almost done, add onion and stir. Cook until onion becomes translucent then add corn, stir and saute for about a minute. Add garlic, cook about 30 seconds stirring well to make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Remove from heat, add green onions, salt and pepper to taste. Cover and reserve.


Bacon Polenta

  • 4 Slices Pederson’s Bacon, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups milk
  • ½ cup polenta, or coarse yellow cornmeal
  • 3 green onions, chopped
  • ¼ cup grated parmigiano reggiano (regular grated parmesan or romano will work)
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste

Cook bacon in a medium saucepan over medium heat until almost done, add onion and stir. Cook until onion becomes translucent then add garlic, cook about 30 seconds stirring well to make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Add milk and bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling add polenta, stir well and reduce heat to low. Cook over low heat for 5 minutes stirring regularly. Remove from heat and stir in green onions, parmigiano, salt & pepper to taste. Cover & reserve.


Bacon & Feta Cream Sauce

  • 4 Slices Pederson’s Bacon, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup crumbled Feta cheese
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste

Cook bacon in a medium saucepan over medium heat until almost done, add onion and stir. Cook until onion becomes translucent then add garlic, cook about 30 seconds stirring well to make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Add cream and bring to a boil over high heat, turn heat down to medium and allow to simmer for about 1 minute, it will begin to thicken up a little. Add Feta and whisk until it melts into the cream, about 1 minute. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Cover and reserve.


Bacon Wrapped Lamb Loins

  • 2 Capra Lamb Loins
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp granulated onion
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 4 Slices Pederson’s Bacon
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste
  • 8 toothpicks

Rub lamb loins with olive oil, granulated onion, granulated garlic, salt & pepper.

Cut bacon strips in half (giving you 8 half strips), line up 4 half stips side by side, place one lamb loin in the center and wrap bacon around, fastening each half strip with a toothpick. Set aside and repeat with the remaining lamb loin and bacon. Place on your grill or smoker (if you are using a grill keep the fire low as the bacon will burn over a high flame). Cook until lamb reaches desired internal temp (I like it medium rare), turning only once during the cooking process (smoker @ 225F about 14-15 minutes per side, grill @350 about 5 minutes per side). Remove from heat and allow at least 5 minutes to rest before slicing.

On a platter, pour your bacon polenta out into the middle. Slice the lamb loins and place over the bacon polenta. Spoon bacon corn salad around lamb loins and then top with the bacon & feta cream sauce. Enjoy your Bacon rich meal! (serves 4-6)

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