With Halloween coming up, it’s probably a good idea to start thinking of what sorts of treats you are going to serve the neighbourhood kids. Kids can be picky eaters, so it is probably a good idea to pick something you know everyone loves: bacon. But to make it more Halloween-y, why not make some candied bacon?
Making candied bacon is a lot like making it with brown sugar – but with a key difference. With brown sugar it gives it a light, sweet flavouring. The candying process we are describing here will make the sweet flavour more intense and candy-like. Here’s how you do it.
1. Cook the bacon the way you normally would. You can fry it in a pan or bake it. Choose the method that is most convenient for you. When the bacon shrinks but has not yet become crispy hard, take it out of the pan or the oven. Let it cool off on some paper towels to remove any excess grease.
2. Measure out the sugar. The amount of sugar you’ll want to use will depend on how much bacon you want to make. About a quarter to a third of a cup will work. To really make it sweet, use white sugar instead of brown. You’ll also want to cook the sugar in a frying pan or sauce pan – you won’t get the same effect by baking.
3. Cut up the bacon you’ve prepared into small pieces and layer it on the bottom of the frying pan. Sprinkle the sugar on top until you have a fine layer over all of the bacon. Cook the bacon and sugar on medium-low until the sugar melts. You’ll want to keep the heat as low as possible, and to keep an eye on it, to ensure that it doesn’t burn.
4. When the sugar has melted and become liquid, stir the bacon around so that it is covered on all sides. Cook it until the bacon looks shiny. Then take out the bacon and put it on wire rack to cool off. Don’t let the pieces of bacon touch each other unless you want them to stick together.
When the bacon is cool, you’ll have a delicious treat ready! You can keep the candied bacon in the fridge – it will taste good cold or at room temperature. And I’m sure the kids in your street will love it.
If you want a variation on this recipe, add honey or Dijon mustard to the sugar when you are cooking it. And if you have an ice cream maker, throw the candied bacon bits into vanilla ice cream. It’ll taste delicious. In fact, candied bacon can be added to many different recipes. Why not experiment with your own?