Candied Bacon, An Idea Whose Time Has Come
Turns out it’s surprisingly easy to make:
Baconmania is the Food Fad That Will Not Die, and, to be honest, I’m a little over bacon getting thrown all willy-nilly over everything. But, for these — crisp, crackly, chewy, just slightly caramelly and of course smoky, salty and fatty — for these I will stop playing the jaded fool and get down with some sticky-fingered madness. The combination of textures and flavors is, well, as much a treat as Halloween candy.
The idea is simple: You cook bacon and then melt sugar onto it, which cools into a sweet, brittle shell. It works because of two things: Cooking bacon relatively slowly renders away much of the fat but keeps the meat pliable until you actually candy it, and sugar does crazy things when it gets hot. At some other point we’ll get into the different stages of sugar hardness and all their cute names, like “firm ball” and “soft crack,” but for now, we’ll just leave it at the fact that once sugar hits 310 degrees Fahrenheit, it cools into glass. How will you know when it’s gotten that hot? Well, at about 340 it starts to turn to caramel, so once its color becomes golden and then brown, it’ll be fine.