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Break out your best bacon recipes -- Bacon Takedown is coming

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Because we seem to have hit a lull in bacon-themed events...

A Chicago Bacon Takedown has been announced for Sept. 11 at Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln.

This is not to be confused with Baconfest Chicago, which is ramping up for its second annual tasting in the spring with a series of all-bacon dinners featuring Nueske bacon. The first is Sept. 13 at Chalkboard, 4343 N. Lincoln, and it's already sold out.

While Baconfest and its satellite dinners are chef-focused and meant to showcase what top toques can do with everyone's favorite pork product -- April's Baconfest drew 1,000 people, and organizers are looking to hold the 2011 event at either Navy Pier or the UIC Forum -- the Takedowns are strictly home cook affairs (and sponsored by Hormel Bacon). The cost to attend is $15.

According to Takedown organizer Matt Timms, a Brooklyn actor and filmmaker who hosts these in his spare time, the event -- from 1 to 3 p.m. -- is open to amateur cooks with bacon recipes they feel are extraordinary.

"I've always celebrated the amateur cook," says Timms, 36, who says he falls squarely in that category. "It's just a really fun, incredibly unpretentious event. People come and get to try 20 different bacon recipes."

Seven years ago, Timms was just another chili-cooking Brooklynite. He felt his chili had some potential, so he joined the International Chili Society. But he found their contests to be a bit too restrictive. "I thought, why not do a no-rules event?' " he says. The Chili Takedown was born.

Timms has since hosted takedowns for everything from cookies to curry to fondue. The Bacon Takedown is part of a six-city national tour. Depending on how this goes, he'd like to return to Chicago for a Tofu Takedown.

Those interested in competing should email Timms at What's in it for you? A year's supply of bacon. Tickets to the September Takedown can be had here.

Meanwhile, keep on top of Baconfest happenings here.

"The more, the merrier," says Andre Pluess, one of Baconfest's founders. "People call bacon a fad ... The Beatles were a fad, and they came and they went, but their music lives on. And people keep coming back to the Beatles year after year after year.

"We feel that way about bacon."

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Janet Rausa Fuller

Sun-Times Food editor Janet Rausa Fuller is always thinking about her next meal.



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This page contains a single entry by Janet Rausa Fuller published on August 23, 2010 10:05 AM.

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