It’s finally December, that glorious time of year when I stop complaining about Christmas music, don my ugliest sweater, pick up a glass of volatile nog and get into the holiday spirit. This might shock you, loyal readers, but here at the Republic of Bacon we are hard at work already, thinking of how to make this Christmas season the cheeriest, baconiest holiday ever!

Even though Xmas morning is a few weeks away, our tireless research department has already unearthed some incredible ways to add a little more bacon to your holiday festivities.

 

First, we have to give props to the brave innovators over at Chow, who have recently created a gigantic, bacon-enriched cheese ball that they are calling The Turducken of Cheese Balls. Weighing in at over five pounds of cheese and other delightful flavourings, this culinary heavyweight is as delicious as it is substantial. In addition to various forms of cheese, like Emmental, Manchego, and goat cheese, the cheese ball also features such tasty additions as chorizo sausage, dried figs, and a healthy serving of crumbled bacon. When sliced, you can see all the beautiful layers of this cheese ball, like some kind of cheesy, edible sedimentary rock. This would make a stunning centrepiece to any holiday hors d’oeuvres party menu.

 

If your life is anything like mine, then you’ve already besieged with invitations to participate in holiday cookie exchanges. Whether with friends, family members or office mates, it can be tempting to just bake an untold dozen of your familiar speciality and call it a day. This year, we suggest that you blow all of them out of the cookie-trade water with this incredible recipe for Smoky Bacon Ginger Cookies. These incredible cookies have a wonderful texture, crunchy as a ginger snap on the outside and perfectly chewy at the centre. All through the cookie are crisp little pieces of bacon, and bacon fat is also added to the dough. Your cookies will become legendary, we promise!

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Even teetotallers tend to indulge in the occasional drink around Christmas; having a little tipple can help add to the festive atmosphere and help friends and visitors to relax and unwind. Whether enjoying a hot toddy around the fire on a quite evening, or indulging in some punch at a slightly wild office Christmas party, drinks are am important part of many people’s celebrations. As we’ve pointed out in several blog posts dedicated to bacon cocktails, already delicious mixed drinks can be made even more festive and special. One of my current favourite holiday is a spicy bacon Bloody Mary. I start with a straightforward Bloody Mary recipe: vodka, tomato juice, lemon juice and Worcestershire sauce in a celery salt-rimmed glass. Then, I add a dash of my secret ingredient: bacon hot sauce. Not only does this give the drink a perfect spicy kick, but the depth and smokiness of the bacon takes the already complex flavour to another level. The bacon flavour also makes this a perfect brunch drink, an adventurous alternative to a mimosa to accompany early afternoon waffles.