"Bacon makes everything better.” That’s one of our favorite sayings in the test kitchen, and it helps explain why our recipes frequently call for it, or for its Italian cousin, pancetta. Bacon and pancetta are both made from pork bellies; the difference between them lies in how they’re prepared and cured. To make bacon, pork belly sides are brined and then smoked (Here's a DIY bacon from Bruce Aidells, if you'd like to try this). Pancetta, the Italian version of bacon, is made by seasoning a pork belly side with salt and lots of pepper, curling it into a tight roll, and wrapping it in a casing to hold the shape. It’s cured, but it isn’t smoked. Most people should have ready access to bacon in its various forms—thin-or thick-sliced, slab (unsliced)—but traditional Italian Pancetta can be harder to find. Dolcetertra selected a wonderful Bacon in Central Italy (Norcia, Umbria) truly unrivalled.