Friday, July 30, 2010

A wonderful, magical animal

Homer Simpson:  Are you saying you're never going to eat any animal again?  What about bacon?
Lisa:  No.
Homer:  Ham?
Lisa:  No!
Homer:  Pork chops?
Lisa:  Dad, those all come from the same animal!
Homer:  Ooh...yeah...right, Lisa.  A wonderful, magical animal.*

It's true, Homer.  So magical, in fact, that you can even turn it into candy.

Homer:  Mmm, bacon brittle!

Mmm, Bacon Brittle

From a cookbook I just had to purchase because of the title, Everything Tastes Better with Bacon by Sara Perry.

1 c. sugar
1/2 c. light corn syrup
1/2 c. water
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbs. butter
About 8 oz bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled to make around 1/2 c. bacon bits
1/2 c. chopped toasted pecans

Butter a large cookie sheet, and place into a warm oven to heat up.  The candy spreads more easily on a warm surface.  In a medium, heavy bottomed saucepan, combine sugar, corn syrup and water over medium high heat.  Stir until sugar dissolves and mixture comes to a boil.

Attach candy thermometer to the pot and allow to cook, without stirring, until temperature reaches 290.   The mixture will just be turning amber at the edges.

Remove from heat, and immediately stir in the salt, baking soda, vanilla, butter, bacon and pecans.

BE CAREFUL as the mixture will bubble up as soon as you begin to stir.   Working quickly, beat vigorously a few times until the mixture is smooth, and then pour out onto the prepared cookie sheet.  You can use a metal spatula if you need to in order to spread it as thinly as possible.

Allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before breaking into pieces.    

It tastes even better than it looks.   Salty, a tiny bit smoky, buttery, crunchy and sweet.  Magic candy!

And get this...the suggested use case (besides scarfing it down) is to crumble it up into homemade peanut butter cookies.

All together now:  Mmm, bacon brittle peanut butter cookies!!!

* Click here to listen to the sarcasm for yourself.  From Season 7, Episode 5, "Lisa becomes a vegetarian".
** I am merely jumping on a foodie bandwagon with this sinful concoction.  In this month's LA Magazine's Best of LA feature, they highlight the following treats in the food section:  the Cochon Bourre cocktail (bourbon and bacon), at Church & State, the Bacon Chocolate Crunch Bar at Animal, the Bacon Truffle Caramel Popcorn at Sweetsalt, Bacon-wrapped Bacon at Fig, and the Maple Bacon Donut at Nickel Diner.   Springfield, eat your heart out.

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