Ever wondered what it’s like to savor a delicious piece of bacon but can’t because you keep kosher?
Well, members of the kosher community have reason to rejoice because kosher bacon has come to Pikesville.
Chaim Silverberg, founder and creator of Lamb B-a-a-a-con (pronounced as if sounded by a lamb), is a special-needs teacher at the Kennedy Krieger Institute. He and brother, Hillel, have hit the kosher jackpot. No technology, no chemicals, just age-old methods and an all-hands-on-deck mentality.
The idea of making and marketing kosher bacon came to Chaim, who has never eaten treif, three years ago. He began experimenting with lamb bacon for his family. Eight months ago, he and Hillel opened their company with the mission of bringing this new product to those who keep kosher — and also for the enjoyment of those who don’t.
Hillel, who was living in Minnesota, moved to Pikesville to take over the business’ daily operation. The brothers are currently “experimenting with farmers markets to raise capital and then go to the next stage,” Chaim said.
This summer, they are selling kosher lamb B-a-a-a-con and b-a-a-a-by back ribs at the Pomona Square and Govanstowne farmers’ markets.
The plan is not to eventually sell out but to keep it personal and local.
“We are the ones who make it, and for most products, you don’t get that direct connection,” said Hillel. He noted the hands-on preparation creates a sense of consumer control.
“I have the ability to match what the consumer wants. It works out for everyone,” Hillel said.
Chaim admitted that some people are skeptical and “a bit standoffish. But most are overjoyed after having the joy of actually experiencing, some for the first time, what bacon is like.”
Ayme Lederman, executive assistant at the Pikesville Chamber of Commerce, who helps organizes the growing weekly farmers’ market at Pomona Square, said that the Silverbergs have been exceedingly “successful and have helped create a growing kosher presence at Pomona. … They cater to everybody. Hopefully, this will bring more people to the market.”
Kim Clapp-Jones was drawn to the kosher B-a-a-a-con stand by the energetic brothers who treat each customer like a celebrity. A pork veteran herself, Jones was cautious before eating the kosher lamb bacon; after just one bite, Jones’ face lit up.
“It’s excellent,” she said. “Great seasoning with a great taste to the palate. … I [might even prefer] this bacon to turkey or regular bacon.”
This “ah-ha” moment doesn’t only happen while the Silverbergs are at farmers’ markets or at the Knish Shop, where their product is also sold. It has become a regular occurrence, said Chaim.
It’s no wonder. Each batch of bacon, around 40 pounds, takes a week to make.
Interested in getting your own? The brothers are at Pomona Square on Tuesdays from 2 to 6 p.m. and at Govanstowne on Wednesdays from 3 to 7 p.m. You can find kosher “lambbaaacon” on Facebook or email firstname.lastname@example.org.