Happy International Bacon Day!
If you are one of those that firmly believes “bacon makes everything better” then you are going to love this sweet and salty treat.
I saw this recipe in a twitter post from Kat Pinke. She raves about how her husband and son instantly loved this treat. And I can totally see why.
While I like bacon, I can’t really say I LOVE bacon (maybe after we date for a bit, who knows… but that’s another story). Anyhow – what I do love is how a little bit of well placed salt can bring out the sweetness in a dessert to new levels. When I saw this, I knew I had to try it for those exact reasons!
I followed Kat’s recipe pretty much exactly except that I downsized it a bit… I wanted to keep some of the extra bacon for breakfast this weekend and I only had so much chocolate on hand (I know – what’s up with that??!?).
Chocolate Bacon Almond Brittle
1/2 lb to 3/4 lb of bacon (roughly half to 3/4 of a package)
3 cups chocolate chips/pieces
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 and a 1/2 cups of granulated sugar
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup light or white corn syrup
1 cup butter
2 cups almonds, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp baking soda
Cook bacon in whatever method you prefer. I like to cook bacon in the oven because I think it is less messy. I used the roasting pan that comes with most ovens. Line the bottom with foil and lay the strips on the top part. In a 400 F degree oven, cook for 15-20 minutes. Let cool and cut into small pieces.
Prepare a cookie sheet for the brittle by placing wax paper or parchment over the sheet and spraying with a non-stick spray.
Chop almonds and spread out on a second cookie sheet. Roast in 350 F degree oven for 8 to 10 minutes. Watch continuously and remove when almonds show the first sign of colour.
In a microwave proof bowl, heat chocolate chips till melted. I microwave for 30 sec intravals and stir inbetween until melted. Once full melted, add in vanilla extra. Because there is water in the extract, the chocolate will bind up slightly. Keep stirring. Once incorporated, spread onto the prepared sheet. Keep spreading out until it’s smooth and at the desired thickness (this is a very personal preference!). Put aside to cool and harden.
In a medium saucepan, combine granulated sugar, water and corn syrup. Over medium high heat, stir until sugar is melted. This takes about three to four minutes. In small batches, add in butter. Stir continuously until all the butter is mixed in. Mixing continuously heat mixture until it reaches 300 F degrees, soft-ball stage. This can take anywhere from 11 to 18 minutes. Brittle will start to turn carmel in colour ever so slightly.
Once mixture reaches the desired temperature, remove from heat. Add in baking soda and combine fully. Mix in almonds and bacon. Pour over chocolate mixture and spread out to fully cover. Cool in the fridge for a few hours. Enjoy!
PS – Can I bend your ear about vanilla extracts? Seriously, they are worth the investment. You can make your own with vanilla beans and vodka (yes, for real) but you can also find really good quality vanilla extra on the market. Look for ones without sugar in them (you don’t need sugar in there – it’s just a filler!), and if you can find one with vanilla as the first ingredient versus water (like the one below) you’re set!