Sunday, November 29, 2015

Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies & Maple Cinnamon Glaze

Provisioning for a recent trip out of Camden Maine, the local market was selling bacon brownies in the bakery. At a county fair, I found a vendor selling bacon strips dipped in melted chocolate. If this surprises you, then you’re out of the chocolate loop. The bacon-chocolate craze has been taking off like a banshee. The combination of crisp salty-smoky bacon and the subtle-sweet smoothness of chocolate is an incredible contrast in tastes.  This recipe is one of my all-time favorites and it will be yours too.
Yield 60 cookies.

1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon hazelnut extract
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 cups bacon bits
An important note:  Be sure to use real bacon bits, not imitation bacon bits.
Also, you can make your own bacon bits in a food processor; make sure you pat down the bacon with paper towels to remove as much bacon grease as possible. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Beat together the butter, sugars, flavorings and eggs until creamy.
In another bowl, sift together the dry ingredients.
Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix well.
Add in chocolate chips and bacon bits. Stir until well integrated.
Wrap dough on a sheet of waxed paper and refrigerate at least an hour.
Remove dough from fridge, pinch off 1½ inch pieces of dough and roll into balls.
Set dough balls about 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Flatten dough balls slightly with your fingers in the center. Bake the cookies for about 10 minutes or until the dough starts to turn golden brown. Allow cookies to cool on a cooling rack while you make the glaze.

Maple Cinnamon Glaze:
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tablespoon maple extract
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon cinnamon
Enough water to make a thick glaze.
Mix all ingredients together until smooth and creamy. If lumpy, use a whisk.
Spread a small amount of the glaze on the top of each cookie and top with leftover bacon bits.
Enjoy, JW