While living in the Northwoods of Wisconsin this past summer in a little cabin alongside a lake, I often gazed out across the water and thought to myself: WWPBD? (What would Paul Bunyan do?) I think I answered the question of what Paul Bunyan would eat for breakfast early on a Wednesday morning.
Eight days before I cooked I began the process of curing around 40 pounds of bacon. I rubbed the meat with a basic dry cure rub (16 oz. Kosher Salt, 8 oz. sugar, 2 oz. pink salt) and then covered the three gigantic slabs with maple syrup. The night before I was to be cooking breakfast, I slow cooked the slabs until the insides reached 145 degrees. I let them chill over night, woke up at 6:45 to start the slicing, and then headed out to the woods to light a fire, carrying with me two enormous frying pans made for the outdoors.
With help from some friends and a campfire, I fried the bacon in batches. After two pans of bacon were fried up, there was a suitable pool of delicious bacon grease for a few rounds of pancakes to fry in. After a few rounds alternating back and forth between bacon and pancakes, we got more creative and created the best pancake in the world — a pancake so amazing it may be the only breakfast with the power to fully satisfy the big man and his blue ox.
To start, a slice of bacon is thrown down into the pan and cooked. Next, you pour pancake batter on top of the bacon. Immediately cover the pancake with chocolate chips. Once you see bubbles, flip that pancake to the ooh’s and aah’s of the onlookers. Give the bottom 10-20 seconds to firm up, cover it with syrup, and then put it in your mouth. Salty. Sweet. Perfect. We found that it worked best to let the pancakes sit for longer than you would a regular pancake. It seemed like the bacon blocked the center from cooking, and the more the center is cooked the easier it will be to flip.
I recommend making these when you are camping, when you are cooking breakfast in your kitchen, or during most hours of most days. I will be making these again — maybe even for dinner.