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Candied Bacon
December 11, 2012 11:32 AM   Subscribe

Candied salted bacon "We want to warn you ahead of time that it will take all of your strength to not eat the entire pan before it all cools. It's just as tasty cold mind you, but while warm it's a perfect food that will take you away to your happy place. If you claim to not have a happy place, the warm candied, salted bacon will provide one for you." Now what else can we do with it? Bite-sized Bacon Caramels and Candied Bacon Fudge perhaps? (Not to be confused with Bacon Caramels and Bacon Caramel Fudge). Previously
posted by spock (59 comments total) 32 users marked this as a favorite

 
I've done something like this...brown sugar on bacon makes it yummy, but if you don't have the time and like microwave ready-made bacon (sacrilege, I know!), dipping it in warm, real maple syrup achieves much the same effect.
posted by xingcat at 11:36 AM on December 11, 2012


I know everybody's taste buds are their own but eww.
posted by item at 11:39 AM on December 11, 2012


If I live a thousand years I will never understand the allure of food that tastes like smoked, greasy cardboard.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:41 AM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?
posted by MuffinMan at 11:42 AM on December 11, 2012 [13 favorites]


Back in the 70s my mom made hors d'ouevres similar to this. She'd par-cook some bacon, cut it into 1-inch pieces, top with brown sugar then fire it under the broiler until the sugar melted and bacon cooked completely. She was obviously ahead of her time.
posted by slogger at 11:42 AM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Bacon candy (bacon dipped in dark brown sugar, then baked) is fabulous and I make it at least once a year for parties. But I don't understand this recipe using thin-cut bacon. And I don't understand adding salt, since bacon is plenty salty. Although I could see using it for texture, I guess, but then I think I would use something coarser than kosher salt.

item! "eww" because you tried it and hated it, or "eww" because it sounds gross? Next time you go out for breakfast or brunch, let some (real!) maple syrup from your pancakes or waffles get on your bacon. Mmmmm!!!
posted by rtha at 11:43 AM on December 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


dipping it in warm, real maple syrup achieves much the same effect.

See, I've been doing this forever and it's basically the greatest thing. You're eating some waffles with syrup, you get some syrup on your bacon, and it's awesome. My wife, for some reason, thinks it's a bad combination. I don't understand her.

Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?

Of course not, that would be silly. Bacon is delicious. Porn is all over the damn place and I still enjoy having sex.
posted by bondcliff at 11:45 AM on December 11, 2012 [8 favorites]


I will never understand the allure of food that tastes like smoked, greasy cardboard.

I won't either. Thankfully, candied salted bacon tastes nothing like that.
posted by briareus at 11:45 AM on December 11, 2012 [5 favorites]


Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?

Replace bacon with cats and I'm with ya.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 11:47 AM on December 11, 2012 [7 favorites]


Okay, sugary smoked (yet greasy) cardboard.
posted by Holy Zarquon's Singing Fish at 11:47 AM on December 11, 2012


Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?

Yes. It also bugs the hell out of me. It's not just on the web, but it's infecting my family and friends as well. My sister-in-law bought my nephew bacon jam and informed him via Facebook that she had purchased what was sure to be his new favorite food for him to try when he comes home for winter break. I wanted to puke up some bacon on the spot.
posted by PuppyCat at 11:48 AM on December 11, 2012


Candied bacon is, for the record, a pretty old recipe for entertaining. I'm pretty sure my great grandmother used to make it with thick cut local bacon (yum).
posted by 2bucksplus at 11:48 AM on December 11, 2012


Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?

Nah. I like what I like. Not what the interwebs have failed to fetishize.
posted by briareus at 11:48 AM on December 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


Replace bacon with cats and I'm with ya.

Candied salted cats are too chewy for my taste.
posted by pencroft at 11:49 AM on December 11, 2012 [11 favorites]


I will never understand the allure of food that tastes like smoked, greasy cardboard.

That sounds disgusting. Have you tried bacon?
posted by DU at 11:50 AM on December 11, 2012 [19 favorites]


There's a local place that puts candied bacon on their homemade chocolate jalapeño ice cream. It's my kid's favourite dessert.

I'm so-so on bacon. If I'm having meat for breakfast, I'd much rather have pea-meal bacon or a nice slab of ham.
posted by looli at 11:50 AM on December 11, 2012


You can take that candied bacon and chop it up and throw it in with chocolate chips when you're making cookies. And then you have chocolate chip bacon cookies.
posted by specialagentwebb at 11:51 AM on December 11, 2012


Fine more bacon and cats for me.
posted by The Whelk at 11:52 AM on December 11, 2012 [2 favorites]


this recipe, as presented, is very, very wrong. Take note, Metafilter, that the right way to do candied bacon is as follows:

- you must use high-quality, thick-cut bacon that cooks up to a shattering crisp. Many thick-cut bacons cook up leathery. To prevent this, every slice should be very streaky, without any pieces that are all fat or all meat.

- using the oven for this is good (and, indeed, you should use the oven any time you're cooking more than a couple strips of bacon), but you should set the bacon on a rack for maximum crispness. You don't need to do this when you're cooking normal bacon, but it's better to elevate the meat above the gathering fat when it's coated in sugar and you can't blot it dry.

- you should not use salt (if you do, you should use fleur de sel or something for texture. But seriously, bacon does not need salt). Instead, you should shower each piece of caramel-y bacon with coarsely cracked black pepper about five minutes before you pull it.

- bacon with brown sugar and pepper is called Caligula bacon. This is non-negotiable.
posted by peachfuzz at 11:53 AM on December 11, 2012 [12 favorites]


Yum.
posted by Sys Rq at 12:03 PM on December 11, 2012


I went to the California State Fair this past summer and was dismayed to see chocolate-covered bacon for sale at several food vendors. Did not partake.
posted by Numenius at 12:03 PM on December 11, 2012


CHECKMATE SHITLORDS. Let's see how deep your commitment to stupid food is.
posted by boo_radley at 12:06 PM on December 11, 2012


☑ sugar
☑ salt
☑ fat
posted by dmd at 12:06 PM on December 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?

The BACONATE ALL THE THINGS! meme strikes me as a little odd, but it would take the smoky and salty nuclear fallout of the heat death of a thousand pork-powered suns to satiate my love for bacon. I put it on/in my meatloaf (which is itself liberally covered in brown sugar) last night partially because I had had a particularly shitty day and needed comfort food. It was divine. When my greasy hand clutches at my straining heart for the last time, I will regret nothing.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 12:17 PM on December 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


In 7th grade, when I knew little to nothing about baking, a friend and I were trying to make some oatmeal cookies. We apparently needed a certain amount of shortening, and falling short of the required amount, went looking for a substitute. My genius solution was the jar of bacon drippings my mother saved - it was fat, wasn't it? So we tossed in a tablespoon or two of that and about 40 minutes later, voila - bacon oatmeal cookies. Nobody has ever let me live this down. Hence, I scoff at all nonsense bacon ideas, because I have deep-seated and unresolved shame over my bacon mistake 25 years ago.
posted by PuppyCat at 12:18 PM on December 11, 2012


PuppyCat*, that does not sound like a mistake. That sounds like culinary inspiration bordering on genius.

Now I want to try that.

* It's funny to call you that, because one of our cats, Roswell by proper name, is mostly called puppycat - he fetches and follows me around, so...
posted by rtha at 12:21 PM on December 11, 2012


Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?

I REGRET TO INFORM YOU THAT I AM SO NOT HAVING THAT EFFECT.
posted by iamkimiam at 12:23 PM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Bacon + kosher salt = irony.
posted by DrMew at 12:27 PM on December 11, 2012 [7 favorites]


Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?

Yes, it bothers me, but put me off eating the stuff? No.

However, my favorite bacon is bacon. Not bacon candy, bacon chocolate, bacon caramels. JUST BACON. Try as you might internets, you can't take that from me. So stop making it dessert.
posted by mcstayinskool at 12:32 PM on December 11, 2012


The secret to great matzo balls is to use just the right amount of bacon grease. This is one of the rare instances in which "too much bacon" is not an oxymoron. I still haven't hit on the absolute correct proportions of schmaltz, bacon grease, and olive oil--more work to do, but I'm the man for the job.
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:40 PM on December 11, 2012


Meat Candy

1 Package Bacon
1 Package Lil' Smokies Sausages
Toothpicks
~2 cups Brown Sugar
Oven-safe Dish, like a 9x12 Pyrex

Cut uncooked bacon into 1.5-2" strips. Wrap each sausage in a strip of bacon. Spear through bacon-wrapped sausage with a toothpick to secure bacon-parka. Place in oven-safe dish. Repeat. When satisfied with quantity, cover bacon-sausages in brown sugar. More than a light dusting, but not too much. Place in 350 degreen oven for about 45 minutes or until sugar is melted and bacon is cooked. Enjoy.
posted by MarvinTheCat at 1:01 PM on December 11, 2012


thanks for reminding me of the bacon cashew caramel popcorn recipe I downloaded but have not made yet!
posted by vespabelle at 1:11 PM on December 11, 2012


This is very similar to something I made recently while extremely drunk:

Candied Sriracha Bacon

Take a bunch of bacon and chop it into bite-sized pieces. Fry (preferably in a wok-style pan) until halfway done, stirring frequently, and add 3 or 4 tablespoons of sugar, let it caramelize in the fat. When the bacon is crisp, remove from heat and toss with sriracha to taste.
posted by El Sabor Asiatico at 1:36 PM on December 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


I made some candied bacon "for my kids" once, but I don't think they even got a look in (in my defence, I didn't make much, it was just to try it but it was good. I put something hot along with the brown sugar, probably chili flakes or something).
posted by thylacinthine at 1:55 PM on December 11, 2012


Thin spread of Trader Joe's Speculoos Cookie Butter on thick bacon (I'm in Allan Benton town). Heaven, despite bacon going the way of ninjas and pirates and cthulu and Dr. Who on the internet.
posted by ifjuly at 2:01 PM on December 11, 2012


I don't know... I was scarred by my Burger King Chocolate Bacon Sundae experience. I'm still haunted by the memory of the cold blob of fatty bacon end in the spoonful of soft serve ice cream. I'm not yet ready to try sweet+bacon again.
posted by ErikaB at 2:22 PM on December 11, 2012


One of my favorite brewpubs (Bull City Burgers & Brew) have an appetizer called Bull Nuts.

Put simply, this is roasted peanuts and chunks of crumbled bacon mixed together in a peppered candy glaze.

Depending on which staffer preps it that night, the result ranges from a slightly sweet chewy nut mix with a delicate afterburn to something resembling nuclear-grade bacon peanut brittle.

Consistency doesn't matter, though. I order it every time I visit (to-go; it's a snack for later, people) and have never been disappointed.
posted by ardgedee at 2:27 PM on December 11, 2012


let some (real!) maple syrup from your pancakes or waffles get on your bacon. Mmmmm!!!

This cannot happen if your bacon is between two slices of bread fried in bacon fat and then smeared with peanut butter on it. So it doesn't ever happen in my extra-greasy artery hardening world of delish.
posted by srboisvert at 2:30 PM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Peanut butter and bacon do indeed go well together. Anybody old enough to remember Skippy's Peanut Butter with Smoky Bits? This was right around the time when fake bacon bits were invented and this was peanut butter with them mixed in. Loved it as a kid. Would have been better with real bacon.

Which leads me to a simple great recipe that I used to make all the time for Peanut Butter popcorn (it was not hard like Caramel Corn, but a little bit gooey). I think it's time I made up a batch and added in some real bacon.

And the Burger King Bacon Sundae? Simply the best $2.59 I have ever spent in my life.
posted by spock at 2:54 PM on December 11, 2012


El Sabor Asiatico, That sounds much like my favorite drunk sandwich: the bacon, peanut butter and sriracha sandwich, if you're working late at the pub and no one's around, coat it in melted butter and toast it on a griddle. I became a legend to the dishwashers that night.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 3:16 PM on December 11, 2012


I've always wanted to try the Maple Bacon Smoothie over at the Pirate Cat Radio cafe... should I get on that?

Also, what's the post-bacon? Where do we go from such great heights?
posted by StrangerInAStrainedLand at 3:43 PM on December 11, 2012


You can take that candied bacon and chop it up and throw it in with chocolate chips when you're making cookies. And then you have chocolate chip bacon cookies.

For a bacon-loving friend's 30th birthday, he threw a bacon & bourbon bash: every dish on the buffet featured bacon or bourbon or bacon and bourbon. I made him a bottle of bacon-infused bourbon (of course) and a big batch of bacon-bourbon caramel corn: I used my usual caramel corn recipe but swapped in bacon fat for ~25% of the butter, added a big slug bourbon in place of vanilla, and tossed crumbled bacon in with the peanuts and popcorn, then baked it all and let it cool 'til it was crispy.

I made it mostly as a novelty, thinking it would be okay-not-great. It was incredible: salty and sweet and smoky and rich and crunchy and WOW. It was hard to stop eating it. I'm now wondering about the possibilities of peanut-bacon brittle.
posted by Elsa at 4:31 PM on December 11, 2012 [4 favorites]


Since we've begun to discuss bacon and popcorn, let me present to you my favorite recipe involving the two: bacon and cashew caramel corn. It is divine, and a breeze to put together.
posted by nonmerci at 6:34 PM on December 11, 2012


Elsa! Please share the full recipe, sounds awesome!
posted by coust at 6:51 PM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


MuffinMan writes "Does anyone else find the fetishization of bacon on the internets completely puts them off actually eating the stuff?"

No because Bacon!
posted by Mitheral at 7:10 PM on December 11, 2012


Elsa, please yes.
posted by rtha at 8:08 PM on December 11, 2012


If I live a thousand years I will never understand the allure of food that tastes like smoked, greasy cardboard.

I recommend you go to a doctor immediately because something in your mouth is fucked up and broken in a medically serious way. I'm concerned.
posted by FatherDagon at 10:12 PM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Sure! I don't have my notebook of trusty recipes handy, but I know it's very similar to this one, though I use light corn syrup (not dark) and --- no matter what recipe I'm using --- I use twice as much popcorn as the recipe calls for. That spreads the caramel thinner and lighter, and I like it better. (Of course, it also yields MUCH more caramel corn for less money, but that's a happy side-effect, not a goal.) I also use toasted nuts: sometimes peanuts, sometimes slivered almonds, sometimes cashews.

For the bacon-bourbon variation (which I've only made once, but will probably make again this Christmas), I cooked a pan of bacon until it was cooked but not-quite-crispy and chopped it up. I reserved the fat and used some to replace ~25% of the butter in the original recipe. (If you were making the Simply Recipes version I linked, that would be 0.25 cup bacon fat and 0.75 cup of butter.)

The linked recipe doesn't call for vanilla, but mine does, added at the end of the syrup-making but before you pour the syrup over the popcorn. I replaced it with a generous shot of bourbon and let it cook a bit longer than I would have cooked vanilla, just in case the extra liquid would upset the recipe. The whole pan of candy-coated popcorn cooks in a low oven to crisp and dry, so that's probably not an issue, but I wanted to be extra-certain.

I stirred in the peanuts and chopped/crumbled bacon into the candy syrup, poured it over the corn and mixed well, then baked it.

Here's the only catch, which I realized just before I packed up the finished caramel corn: most caramel corn is shelf-stable for a few days, but I'm not confident that bacon-laced caramel corn is. (I know, I know: bacon used to be a shelf-stable food, but A. that was a different kind of processing and B. our standards for food safety are vastly different than they used to be.) Fortunately, there was no question of storing this stuff: it disappeared with great speed!
posted by Elsa at 10:12 PM on December 11, 2012 [3 favorites]


I made a candied bacon cheesecake before. It was pretty delicious. Cheese goes extremely well with the salty-meaty flavour of bacon!
posted by destrius at 10:16 PM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Oh, and one heads-up about any candy recipe that calls for adding baking soda to a pot of syrup: the recipe will call for a big pan. USE A BIG PAN. When the soda hits the candy, it is going to fizz and foam and bubble and grow, and if it overflows the pan you will have a heck of a time cleaning your stovetop.
posted by Elsa at 10:19 PM on December 11, 2012 [1 favorite]


Next time you get smoked salmon, grab some sweet double-smoked salmon. Some brands call it "Indian candy".
posted by bonobothegreat at 11:11 PM on December 11, 2012


Candied salted bacon

I've been eating this since I was a kid. Asians already invented smoking pork strips and preserving with sugar and salt for quite some time. Bakkwa or 肉干 is tasty and delicious and is traditionally a holiday food. They even have a vegetarian version.
posted by FJT at 6:52 AM on December 12, 2012


Thanks Elsa!

FJT: I've also had bakkwa, very good! I actually smuggled some out of Singapore :)
posted by coust at 8:44 AM on December 12, 2012


I actually liked the chocolate covered bacon at the state fair. Go figure.

I was amused at a Raising Hope episode recently where they remade the shitty chocolate for school sales with MSG and bacon drippings, though.
posted by jenfullmoon at 5:19 PM on December 12, 2012


That recipe seems careless. Too much bacon grease. Use a rack. Or drain the grease when half done, then put on the sugar and finish cooking.
posted by surplus at 5:16 AM on December 13, 2012


I tried this last night with thick cut bacon laid out on a wire rack over a jelly roll pan, covered with light brown sugar and then salted after it came out of the oven. I made two mistakes I think:

1) I didn't let the bacon get crispy enough. The outer edges of the outer pieces were a lot tastier than the middle pieces. Should be solved with more cooking.

2) The pieces were touching (but not over lapping). This I think allowed the sugar to pool more than it would have if their was a gap. Next time I'm going to put one less piece on the rack so that there is a definate gap between pieces.

Still good though.
posted by Mitheral at 4:25 PM on December 17, 2012


The candied bacon turned out great. I used an oven tray and drained the grease before the crisping stage of broiling slowly. The drizzled brown sugar nicely candied the bacon. I drained the bacon on paper towels and moved it around a bit to keep it from sticking.

The candied bacon was a hit.

The candied bacon fudge was not a winner.

So, in our house, no more mixing of bacon and chocolate. Your house may differ.
posted by surplus at 9:02 AM on December 25, 2012


I was wondering what I'd do with the entire pound of sliced prosciutto Mom gave me for Christmas...
posted by MrMoonPie at 11:19 AM on December 28, 2012


Meh. Candied prosciutto tastes pretty much exactly like bacon, at just 10 times the price.
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:08 AM on December 30, 2012


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