Yes another delightful recipe with that lovely taste you experienced with my Maple Bacon Donuts! It is because I love you all that I share this incredible flavorgasm and because I promised a recipe a day till Christmas! The original recipe is actually from a Martha Stewart cookbook and for a slow cooker. It includes most of the below, but I didn’t have a crock pot at the time so I recreated it to work on the oven.
The ingredients also are varied as her recipe only calls for 1 lb of bacon. Hello, one POUND only? HAH not on my watch people! During the holidays I double this and give it to friends for presents. I haven’t done this in a while because I “misplaced” the recipe. I have been searching high and low for this and where was it to be found? Well in the middle of my Chinese Food cookbook OF COURSE! (Only in my world does this kind of filing of recipes make sense, I would try to explain it but there are certain rules about how long a blog post should be…) Thankfully a friend from Anchorage reminded me how much I love this by mentioning the Steward Cafe serves this, I am sure mine is MUCH better *wicked grin*. I assure you this is amazing.
MAPLE BACON BEER JAM
1 1/2 pounds smoked bacon (I always use a local slice of Alaskan Pork by Homegrown Market because I know they are healthy piggies and the bacon is nitrate free) cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces
- 1 medium onions, diced (This will yield you about a cup. I love when Walla Walla or Vedallia onions are in season it really makes this a treat.)
- 1 medium Granny Smith apple (This will be around a cup. You can use another apple, but it should be one with a good POP of flavor.)
- 4 medium cloves garlic, peel and coarsely chopped (I like to have at least 3 teaspoons, again no less than 2 teaspoons and no more than 4 is a good call here)
- 1/2 cup Bragg apple cider vinegar (you can use a non-organic/raw vinegar but when I cook with apple cider vinegar this has always yielded the best results)
- 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar (Of course there is the argument this doesn’t matter, but the point of this recipe is RICH flavor. Dark Brown Sugar has that in spades!)
- 1/4 cup real maple syrup (It is really important that this is real maple syrup, not just for the flavor but also for the consistency of the jam when your finished cooking it)
- 6 tablespoons brewed coffee (the stronger the better! I use espresso. Don’t have a machine, hit the Starbucks© for a triple shot on the way home from the market before you make this!)
- 6 tablespoons Black Butte Porter (I have found this particular beer to cook down really nicely and not be to over powering)
- 1/2 teaspoon (or more, if you like) cayenne pepper
- Black pepper to taste (unless you are using peppered bacon, then it would be overkill)
- 1:1 ratio of the left over beer and water for while it is cooking down.
- A dutch oven and a wooden spoon (what recipe of mine would be complete without a wooden spoon!)
- Cut the bacon into 1 inch pieces.
- In a dutch oven, fry the bacon pieces until they are lightly browned and beginning to crisp.
- Remove the bacon from the dutch oven onto paper towels or paper bags to drain.
- Fry the onion, apple and garlic in the rendered bacon fat. Cook until onions are just translucent. (Don’t caramelize the onions since they are not done cooking, plus you do not want the apples to be mush yet! AND don’t remove any of the fat before adding the onion mixture, there is no way cutting some calories out of this recipe is going to save you from any diet, just live it up people!)
- If the fat looks like it is excessive, drain it off or remove the onion, apple and garlic mixture out and get rid of the fat.
- Add vinegar, brown sugar, maple syrup, coffee, beer and cayenne pepper
- Bring to a boil, stirring and scraping up browned bits from skillet with a wooden spoon, about 2 minutes.
- Add bacon and stir to combine.
- Simmer uncovered for 2 hours. Adding 1/4 cup of the watered down beer every 30 minutes if needed and stir.
After the 2 hours, let cool.
- Pulse in a food processor or blender. Decide if you like it chunky or smoother. (The consistency will be anywhere from a jam to a chutney depending on how much you blend it down.)
- Store in a jar and refrigerate. (It will last up to a month. You can also store in airtight high end plastic-ware, such as Tupperware© but I suggest using Bell, Le Parfait, Fido or my new favorite Weck. They have glass tops and seal wonderfully, especially when you are storing something for quick consumption since they are so easy to clean!)
The recipe yields about three cups, which is enough for three 8-ounce jars or six 4-ounce jars. Ideally this will last up to a month in the fridge, but let’s face it there is no way it will last that long with how tasty it is!
- Bacon Burgers with Bacon Onion Balsamic Jam (ourlifeinfood.com)
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- Bacon Beer (bacontoday.com)
- The Web’s Best Recipes With Bacon (coolmaterial.com)
- Lazy Bacon Cupcakes (foodservicewarehouse.com)