Tag Archives: Bacon 24/7

Bacon-Streusel Topped Apple Pie

Bacon Streusel Topped Apple pie 6003

The other day I promised you some Thanksgiving-appropriate desserts, and today I shall deliver! I think we’d all agree: Thanksgiving is just not Thanksgiving without dessert. And for me growing up, Turkey Day dessert equaled PIE. Lots and lots of beautiful pies would line a table and a couple hours after our turkey meal, we’d all dig in and stuff our faces with a little slice of each kind.

Bacon Streusel Topped Apple Pie 5988

We kept things pretty traditional with the pumpkin and pecan pies, but once every few years, someone would make a lovely deep-dish, double crust apple pie. I’ve always been a fan of apple pie, since before I even have real memories, apparently. As in, there are high chair pictures. And, I still am a huge fan!

bacon streusel topped apple pie 6020

Bacon streusel topped apple pie 6034

When it comes to apple pies, the classic deep-dish version is always welcome, but this year I thought we’d shake things up a bit with a streusel topping instead of a top crust. And I couldn’t seem to stop there – oh no, I went ahead and included BACON in this streusel topping. Bacon bits!!! Oh, and let me not neglect to mention the bacon fat in the pie crust. And no, I didn’t clarify my bacon fat either. Something I didn’t do on purpose, I might add. When you clarify the bacon fat, it becomes mostly about texture, and I wanted that smoky, bacon-y goodness flavor in there too.

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Upon tasting, I must conclude it was the right decision. This pie is wonderfully familiar yet puts a unique spin on the good ol’ apple pie. Alert any vegetarians first, but I highly recommend putting this apple pie out on your dessert table this Thanksgiving. It’s really, really delicious. Enjoy!

Bacon Streusel topped apple pie 6057

{One Year Ago: Julie’s Spaghetti with Meat Sauce}
{Two Years Ago: Apple Pecan Cheesecake Cupcakes, Fried Brussels Sprouts with Pecans and Capers}

Source: adapted from Bacon 24/7 by Theresa Gilliam

Ingredients:

CRUST:
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
Healthy pinch of kosher salt
6 tbs unsalted butter, chilled and cut into cubes
2 tbs un-clarified bacon fat, chilled
½ tsp apple cider vinegar
6-8 tbs ice cold water

PIE FILLING:
2 medium Granny Smith apples, peeled, halved, cored and thinly sliced
2 medium Braeburn apples, peeled, halved, cored and thinly sliced
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup maple syrup
Pinch of kosher salt
½ cup all-purpose flour

BACON STREUSEL:
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup brown sugar
4 tbs very cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
½ cup cooked and crumbled bacon (about 6 slices)
2 tbs chopped, toasted walnuts

Directions:
To make the CRUST: combine the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and bacon fat and use a pastry blender or two forks to cut the fat into the flour, until the fat is the size of peas. Add the vinegar and the water and stir gently until the dough has mostly come together. Use your clean hands to briefly knead the dough for about 30 seconds, just to get the rest of the little crumbly bits to incorporate into the dough. Shape the dough into a disc, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Make the PIE: preheat your oven to 375 F. Grease a regular 9” pie plate and set on a rimmed baking sheet. Remove the pie dough disc from the refrigerator and set on a floured surface. Lightly flour your rolling pin and roll the dough out into about a 12” circle. Transfer the dough to your prepared pie plate. You’ll probably have more overhang in some spots than others, so use kitchen shears to trim it and patch the more paltry spots. Fold the overhang under the pie dough, then use your fingers to crimp the dough decoratively. Place in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling.
In a large bowl, toss the apples with the lemon juice, vinegar, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, granulated sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup, salt, and flour. Toss together very well until all the apples are coated.
Now make the BACON STREUSEL: in a medium bowl, combine the flour and brown sugar. Using a pastry blender or two forks, cut the butter into the flour until it resembles coarse sand and pea-sized clumps form. Add the crumbled bacon and walnuts and stir to mix.
Spoon the apples into the prepared pie shell. Smooth them out on top, then evenly sprinkle the bacon streusel over top. Bake in the preheated oven until the top is browned and the apples are tender, 50-60 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Bacon and Hazelnut Buttermilk Caramels

Bacon and Hazelnut Buttermilk Caramels

Good day, everyone! We’re going to make today a Twofer Thursday; I fully intended to publish this one on Tuesday, but I got caught (literally!) in the middle of the Snowpocalypse of the Damned, and that sort of put a kink in my style. So I’ll also be sharing another post later on today to make up for it. The good news is, Matt and I both made it home safely, and now I can share these *amazing* homemade caramels with you!

bacon hazelnut caramels, being cut

I’m continuing my theme of Christmas Gift Week, where I’m showcasing recipes made with food/cooking related Christmas gifts this year. Today’s recipe highlights two gifts: a new cookbook I bought with some money I got from my mom, and a brand new candy thermometer from my sister and brother-in-law!

bacon hazelnut caramels

A few years ago, I bought the cheapest candy thermometer I could find (mistake) and well, you get what you pay for. It pretty much sucked. Thus, I’ve tended to stay away from making things that require one, like marshmallows, fudge, and caramel sauce. Thanks to my dear sister and her family, I’m back in business! This new one is awesome! Much easier to use and read. Thanks you so much, Megan, Trey, Jack and Claire!!

The book I got myself is entitled, Bacon 24/7. I don’t have to tell anyone how incredibly awesome that is, right? I mean, there’s bacon in Every. Single. Recipe! Come on!! How cool is that? These candies are the first thing I’ve made from the book, and so far, I’m quite impressed.

Bacon and Hazelnut Buttermilk Caramels

I have to sort of apologize for my pictures today; I took these babies to a gathering at a friends’ place and could not bring my new fancy-pants camera along. So I had to slum it with the point-and-shoot. I’ll rationalize by saying that sharing good food with good friends, which is what I did, is way more important than food photography, and if I have to choose, I’ll choose my friends every time. That works, right? 😉 These were well-loved and highly complimented by everyone in attendance. Try them yourself, soon, and you too can be the most popular person at your next gathering! Thank you so much for the book, Mom!!

bacon and hazelnut buttermilk caramels

Source: Bacon 24/7 by Theresa Gilliam

Ingredients:
2/3 cup hazelnuts
½ cup cooked and crumbled bacon (about 6 slices)
¾ cup buttermilk
¾ cup heavy cream
1 ½ cups granulated sugar
½ cup brown sugar, lightly packed
1/3 cup light corn syrup
¼ cup (4 tbs) unsalted butter, cut into pats
¼ tsp kosher salt
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Spread the hazelnuts on a small baking sheet or a cake pan. Toast in the oven for about 8 minutes. Transfer the nuts to a clean kitchen towel and rub briskly to remove the skins. You don’t have to be too precious about every little bit of skin coming off, just get the majority of it. Chop the hazelnuts coarsely.
Spray an 8×8 inch square baking pan with cooking spray. Cut 2 pieces of parchment paper (about 8×15 inch) and lay 1 vertically in the pan and the other horizontally in the pan so the pan is fully lined with the parchment paper with the extra paper coming up over the sides to make handles to remove the cooled caramels. Spray the parchment paper with cooking spray.
Sprinkle the chopped hazelnuts evenly over the bottom of the pan, then sprinkle the bacon evenly over the hazelnuts. Set aside.
Combine the buttermilk and heavy cream in a measuring cup. Pour half the mixture into a medium saucepan. Add the granulated sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, butter, and salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Continue to cook 10 minutes without stirring.
Now stir in the remaining buttermilk mixture; continue to cook without stirring until the temperature reaches 250 F on a candy thermometer. This takes roughly 10 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla, being careful of your hands and face as it will bubble and steam.
Immediately pour the hot caramel into the prepared pan, over the bacon and hazelnuts. Leave it to cool completely, at least 1 hour and up to overnight.
When the caramel is completely cooled, lift it out of the pan with the parchment handles. Lightly grease a sharp knife and cut the caramels into about 48 even squares. The book says you can store the caramels at room temperature for up to 2 weeks. I wouldn’t know anything about that, and you probably won’t either. These little morsels disappear fast!