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Crispy, savory, sweet: The many flavors of bacon are featured at contest

Updated: 2013-09-13T19:57:54Z

By STEVE EVERLY

The Kansas City Star

A 120-pound woman smoked the competition Saturday, becoming the first of her sex to win the Kansas City-area’s Bacon Fest eating contest.

Molly Schuyler, a military wife and mother of four children, swallowed a pound of Farmland bacon in three minutes, beating out 20 mainly male contestants in the fifth annual Bacon Fest, a fundraiser for the Rehabilitation Institute of Kansas City, which helps recently disabled children and adults.

She collected a $100 check, a gold trophy crowned with a pig and plenty of bacon.

“Can I have the leftover bacon, seriously?” Schuyler asked the person collecting the contest’s uneaten pork.

The event attracted an estimated 2,000 people with the institute expecting to collect $100,000, said Melissa Saubers, a spokeswoman for the event.

Other events included a recipe contest, with bacon apple pie the winner. Food vendors sold bacon brownies and bacon muffins with bacon honey glaze. Those looking for lunch munched on pork belly sliders. Dessert was yogurt with crispy bacon crumbles.

A popular T-shirt at the event read: “Bacon Jam-The Boyfriend Keeper.”

Each of the nearly two-dozen eating contestants was given bottles of water and a pound of cooked bacon in an aluminum pan. They had five minutes to eat as much as they could. Besides Schuyler, only one other person ate it all, and he took the full five minutes. His award: grocery-store coupons for more bacon.

The 33-year-old Bellevue, Neb., resident entered her first eating contest last year in Des Moines, Iowa, on a dare. She won and has since competed in 11 more, eating pizza, burritos and other foods. She has yet to lose.

Schuyler, who was one of three women competing in the Bacon Fest contest, said she is usually seen as the underdog because of her small size. But she knows what it takes to win, including chewing the food as little as possible.

Now, with another win under her belt, she’s looking forward to her next challenge.

“It’s in Chicago, mini corn-dogs,” said Schuyler.

To reach Steve Everly, call 816-234-4455 or send email to severly@kcstar.com

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