Wednesday, 21 April 2010
In preparation to make the ultimate chocolate bacon cupcakes, I both listened to your comments and did a little research on my own. I stumbled upon caramelizing bacon – something I’d never tried or even seen done before. Sugar + bacon? This was something I had to try!
It was amazing! Look at that shine – the bacon had a layer of fairly solid (not dripping) yet still chewy, not crunchy, syrup coating it. The inside was meaty and savory. If you stretch the cooking time longer than I did (8 minutes per side), it would probably get more crisp.
I saw many different, very similar variations of caramelizing bacon recipes, and sort of combined them all. The cooking times may vary according to the thickness of your bacon, and the amount of brown sugar you will need will also depend on how many pieces you want to make. Just to try this out, I only made 2 slices and used around 1/2 C of brown sugar.
I also added some extra sugar on top of the bacon once it was already coated and unintentionally made bacon flavored caramel! The sugar spread across the parchment paper and, once cooled, became shards of savory caramel. This would be a great garnish for a bacon dessert.
Some interesting variations I saw also add spices to the brown sugar – cinnamon, nutmeg or cayenne pepper. The cinnamon and/or nutmeg would be a nice compliment, maybe to serve with French toast at brunch. Cayenne would add a whole other dimension to the bacon; salty, sweet, savory, AND spicy. Definitely worth trying in the future!
- Bacon slices – as many as you want (I used 2)
- Brown sugar – as much as you need to evenly coat bacon (I used around 1/2 C)
Preheat oven to 375°F.
Line a casserole dish (or a baking pan that has raised edges) with parchment paper.
Sprinkle brown sugar onto a plate. Lay bacon strips in sugar, one at a time, coating and patting down sugar evenly onto both sides with fingers. Hold up over plate and lightly shake excess sugar off. Pat more on as needed to cover bare areas.
Lay coated bacon strips in pan so they are not touching.
(If you want to make some bacon flavored caramel, add some extra sugar on top of the bacon slices. Allow pan to cool around 10 minutes and let the sugar harden. Carefully peel the caramel off the parchment paper.)
Bake for about 8-10 minutes, then flip and bake another 8-10 minutes, depending on how crispy you like your bacon and the thickness of your slices.