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I am living in denial, stuck in the past. I felt like a bacon sandwich for lunch so I made one, just like old times. I toasted the bread, got the mayo, tomato and avocado out of the fridge, and put the bacon on the grill.

One vital mistake: it wasn’t bacon. The meat that looked like bacon required cutting into bacon-size pieces. But the “rashers” were still too chunky and the fat that melted on the grill caught fire, causing minor panic and a kitchen-full of smoke that made the dog cough.

I was kidding myself, thinking that Carrefour had magically provided real bacon from within its chiller cabinet after I’d been searching for it for so long. Yes, I can find panceta in any store. Panceta that is delicious in burgers, on pizzas and in salads. Cubes of crispy pork, yes. Bacon, no.

I am yet to recreate the Saturday lunchtime sandwich of choice – grilled bacon, softly-melting brie and avocado on wholemeal bread. I’ve picked up some lovely brie, there’s a good baker’s around the corner, and avocados are currently not a problem as they are ripe and as big as my hand in the vegetable shop. But the one crucial ingredient is missing. I can’t buy bacon.

Googling “bacon in Buenos Aires” turns up a street in Villa Pueyrredón and a Francis Bacon exhibition. Admittedly, I did read about a bacon delivery service from Baines Best Bacon (Pick Up The Fork has a review and some excellent bacon pics here) but I fear Baines and his bicycle won’t be keen on making the trip west along the freeway, and if he does I figure the $45 pesos price will rise a little.

Conclusion: There is no real bacon west of Buenos Aires. Am I wrong?

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