Closer to ham in appearance than streaky bacon but with the same smoky and salt-cured flavor, Canadian bacon is a less fatty and lean alternative to regular bacon and can be used pretty much in the same was as bacon or ham when cooking. Canadian bacon is sold already cooked and can be eaten straight from the package but it can also be cut up, sautéed, or fried and garnished over a meat, fish, seafood or vegetable dishes, as well as in stews, soups, pasta, and rice. When cooked, however, it does not fry up to a crisp like streaky bacon and thus shares the same quality as ham in this respect.
Canadian bacon is sold in cylindrical chunks. One of the best ways to enjoy the full flavor of Canadian bacon is to slice it and make it into a sandwich, on its own or with a slice of cheese. It also makes an excellent cold cut that can be served as hors d’oeuvres during wine and cheese parties together with sausages, salamis, crackers, and a good selection of cheeses for a delicious platter. There are quite a number of wines that pair well with Canadian bacon, particularly full-bodied reds like Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Shiraz, Tempranillo, Chardonnay, Barbera, Riesling, and Beaujolais.
Canadian bacon can be easily heated in a skillet, and cooked a little until the sugars caramelize and give the bacon a nice color. Serve warmed Canadian bacon with some eggs, tart or pie, some fruits, crackers, cheeses, or toast for a breakfast fit for champions. Toast some English muffins cut in half, place one slice of Canadian bacon on each half of the toasted muffin then top with poached eggs and coat with hollandaise sauce. Garnish the sandwich with lemon and parsley for a classic breakfast of Eggs Benedict.