Sunday, March 3, 2013

Holy Pig

One glance at the recipe title and I could focus on little else.  A mere two words have captured my heart and have yet to relent.  Friends, if you've never met CARAMELIZED BACON, get ready to start living.

I was scheduled to host book club last week and was in dire need of some fresh snack inspiration.  A potentially risky choice, I opted to prepare three dishes for the gals that I had never tried before myself.  But with two of them being Barefoot recipes, my fears were eased.  As a rule, she never lets me down; that reliability coupled with a divine concept like caramelized bacon, how could this NOT be fabulous?   Salty, sweet and spicy mingle together on a satisfyingly toothy backdrop... of bacon... Are you sold yet?  Did I also mention that this is simple to assemble and can be made in advance?

The only thing better than a couple of these little beauties is a whole tray filled with them. 

I'll share the other two recipes in the next post. This one deserves the spotlight.

Ina Garten's Caramelized Bacon

1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup pecans
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 pound thick cut, applewood smoked bacon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a food processor or mini chop, combine sugar, nuts, salt, pepper and cayenne until finely ground. Add maple syrup and pulse until moistened.

Top a foil lined baking sheet with a baking rack.  Cut the bacon slices in half, and place them on the baking rack, being sure they're not touching.  Evenly spread the sugar mixture on each slice.  Bake 25 to 30 minutes and let cool to room temperature before serving.


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