A Southern Grace: iiiiit's bacon!

July 1, 2013

iiiiit's bacon!

Yum


More than almost any other aroma, the smell of sizzling bacon has a magical power to convince a person that she's hungry even if she's only just stuffed her stomach full of other foods.


I don't go absolutely crazy for the stuff, but I will say that it's one of the primary things standing in my way of becoming a vegetarian (not that I've ever considered doing that)(though there's certainly nothing wrong with that lifestyle if that's how you roll). While bacon's good amazing on its own, it's even better when used in combination with other foods. It's obviously terrific on a burger or egg biscuit, you can wrap it around stuffed dates for a surprisingly tasty appetizer, and it even works in lots of dessert applications.


Arguably the very best use for bacon is the BLT. I'm not exactly sure how the combination of bacon, lettuce, and tomato came to be so popular, but something about the crunchy saltiness of bacon brings out the best in juicy 'maters and crisp lettuce. Someone stumbled onto the grouping, and I'm glad he did.


This version is a little bit different from the standard in that I made spicy candied bacon to use. Maple syrup and brown sugar contribute sweetness and give the cooked bacon a caramelized effect, while mustard and pepper provide an extra kick of heat. The bacon is the star of the BLT anyway, and using candied bacon makes it stand out even more. One final note: Be sure to butter and toast your bread--it makes a huge difference. Mayonnaise is optional, but that step shouldn't be!

Sweet and Spicy Bacon
Ingredients:
  • 1 pound thick-cut bacon
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup, preferably grade B
  • 1 tablespoon spicy mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (or freshly-ground) pepper
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and top with a cooling rack. Arrange bacon slices next to each other on the rack.
In a small bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, mustard, salt and pepper. Brush half of the syrup mixture generously on the bacon and bake 12 minutes. Remove from oven, flip bacon, and brush the other side with the rest of the syrup.
Sprinkle the strips with the brown sugar, and return to the oven for another 15 minutes, or until bacon is crisp on the edges. Let the bacon cool on the rack for just 1-2 minutes before transferring to a plate. The bacon will stick like superglue if you leave it on the rack for too long. Let it cool a bit more before serving, as the bacon will continue to crisp up as it cools.

22 comments:

Foodycat said...

That looks just my affair. I made chipotle candied bacon once and I must do it again!

jose manuel said...

Se ve estupendo el sandiwch.

Saludos

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Irresiistible! I'm a bi fan of bacon and sandwiches.

Cheers,

Rosa

Beth said...

That bacon sounds seriously divine. I haven't' made candied bacon yet, mostly because I'm afraid of addiction! Your sandwich looks great, and I'm impressed that you took the time to photograph it before eating.

Pam said...

Sweet and spicy bacon!! You're talking my language here.

~~louise~~ said...

Sinfully delicious I'm sure Grace. Sometimes I think you just love teasing us with all these goodies:)

Thank you so much for sharing...

Dianne @ Sweet Journey Home said...

A Summertime BLT with homegrown tomatoes brings back a lot of wonderful memories. That looks delicious! I will definitely have to try this version...thanks for sharing your terrific recipes!

Eva Kosmas said...

This sounds absolutely perfect for the warm weather. Something about the heat always makes me crave BLTs, it must be the nice crunch of the lettuce and the cool juicy tomatoes paired with the delicious, delicious bacon. But candying the bacon? SUCH an amazing idea!! I need to try this new and tasty bacon cooking strategy...

Patricia Bacon said...

Now that is one super sandwich. I have always loved bacon, but "caramelized" is just the right sweet/salty thing.

Pat Bacon...( yes, it's my real name!)

Blond Duck said...

Awww yeah.

TeaJae said...

I want some. Think I'll add a few thin slices of avocado to mine since i'm addicted to them or I may omit the mayo and spread some avocado on the bread. Candy bacon yum

Nikki said...

Lusty Monk mustards... Burn In Hell would be perfect for this bacon. And this BLT. Mmm. Good going, girl!

My Kitchen Stories. said...

Totally agree the sell of bacon can just have me running. This sanga looks ........delightful

Katerina said...

Reading about how you caramelized the bacon just made me drool!

Joanne said...

Haha you're so funny! I actually never really liked bacon which is probably why it was so easy for me to make the veg switch.

Erica said...

You make smile every time I come here :) Love your writing style, Grace!Sweet and Spicy Bacon sounds amazing!

Carolyn Jung said...

The aroma of sizzling bacon is almost better than the bacon, itself. ALMOST! ;)

Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella said...

OMG I've always thought that! Bacon and cheeseburgers stand between me and vegetarianism (well there's more but they're the main ones!).

Barbara said...

I could bite right into that, Grace! Looks perfectly delicious. Agree with Lorraine about burgers and bacon. In the Caribbean, they add a fried egg to their BLT...always surprises me, but then I love a fried egg and bacon sandwich too. Bread has to be homemade or fresh from the bakery, though. Your looks as though it is.
YUM
Have a great 4th!

I Wilkerson said...

I love candied nuts, so why not candied bacon!

Nonna Maryann said...

Maybe someone can help. Loved this but I'm looking for a recipe that I saw on a PBS special years ago. Pearl Bailey was making a holiday meal with several guest chefs. She baked a ham that was to die for. She boiled the ham a nd drained it a couple of times then baked it. I would love to repeat that ham but lost the recipe. Can anyone help?

Nutmeg Nanny said...

Perfection :) this sandwich is mouth watering, my husband will love it!