Pecan & Maple Balsamic Bacon

Pecan & Maple Balsamic Bacon - Cooling

I know bacon recipes have almost become cliché on food blogs, but bacon captures attention like a bride walking down the aisle—no one turns away, all eyes are where they’re supposed to be … on the bacon recipe.

Can the love of bacon be strong enough to handle one more?

Yes.

Besides, this isn’t all about the bacon anyway.

It’s about the maple dress.

Like a traditional white dress, adding maple to bacon is not culinary genius, but it works. It always works. Here, we go a step further finishing the smoky-sweet-nutty treat with a splash of Vermont Maple Balsamic.

Maple balsamic, you say?

Oh, yes.

Think of it as the hand-stitched beaded trim, sweet and elegant. Not some artificial maple wanna be, it tastes exactly like you’d imagine if you mixed maple syrup and aged balsamic. Its tangy, sweet, maple-y richness rocks everything we’ve tried it on, especially breakfast sausage and bacon.

I made this Pecan & Maple Balsamic Bacon at Christmas for a white elephant gift exchange. I figured I could take a singing trout or a dancing Santa, but the bacon seemed more tasteful and just as ornery. Who wouldn’t fight over Pecan & Maple Balsamic Bacon? Luckily, no fights broke out, and the one person who I knew would want it more than anyone, got it. He was very happy and it was a worthy consolation prize considering the Yoda Gumball Machine had already been taken from him. I couldn’t convince him to share; he took it straight to the car, Yoda a distant memory.

Pecan & Maple Balsamic Bacon for 'white elephant' gift

Pecan & Maple Balsamic Bacon for ‘white elephant’ gift

 

Back to the Vermont Maple Balsamic.

All over the country, stores offering single source extra virgin olive oils and balsamic vinegars are popping up everywhere. We are one such lucky community with several to choose from, but my favorite is Venice Olive Oil Co at 109 N. Tejon, downtown, Colorado Springs. They are careful with the oils, protecting them from heat and light, ensuring the source and ingredients are pure. Their flavored oils and balsamics have a straightforward, clean taste—nothing artificial or overdone. Free tastings are offered in the store so you can sample various parings and make the best selection. A few of the combinations we enjoy most are:

Blood Orange EVOO & Cinnamon Pear Balsamic
Lemon EVOO & Wild Blueberry Balsamic
Tuscan Herb EVOO & Traditional 18 yr old Balsamic (think of this as the ‘little black dress’ for any fine meal)
Persian Lime EVOO & Cranberry Pear Balsamic

We use them on salads, cheese trays, fresh fruits, desserts, and for finishing meats just before serving. Tangy, sweet, assertive, yet smooth, aged balsamic brings a balance to many flavors.

I’m not just trying to tease you with something only available where I live, check here to find a store in your area. Any of the stores listed with a VF indicates a distributor of Veronica Foods and will have similar products to those mentioned. If you do not have a specialty shop in your area, order on-line through one of the highlighted links below; each one has a slightly different offering of flavors.

Oliverde – (this site has a great list of recipes)

F. Olivers

Millcreek Olive Oil

Art of Oil

Midtown Olive Press (this vender has the Vermont Maple Balsamic)

Outrageous Olive Oils (this site has helpful paring suggestions)

EVOO Marketplace (recipes, gifts, excellent resource information)

Have you tried flavored EVOO or aged balsamic?

Do you have a favorite we could add to this list?

Pecan & Maple Balsamic Bacon
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Ingredients
  • 12 ounces bacon -- applewood smoked or best available
  • ½ cup maple syrup -- grade B if you can find it
  • 1 cup pecans -- finely chopped
  • Vermont Maple Balsamic -- for finishing
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and set a wire rack inside. Brush the rack with oil to prevent sticking.
  3. Place maple syrup in a shallow bowl and chopped pecans on a large plate or platter. Dip bacon in maple syrup, covering completely, let excess drip off. Place syrup covered bacon in the chopped pecans and press pecans onto the bacon.
  4. Lay prepared bacon on the wire rack leaving about ¼ inch between pieces. Bacon can be cut to fit as many pieces on the rack as possible.
  5. Bake in the center of the oven for 15-20 minutes, remove from oven and gently turn bacon over. Some of the pecans will fall off, but that's okay, they make tasty nibbles for later.
  6. Continue to bake 15-20 minutes longer, or until desired crispness is reached. Bacon will continue to crisp once removed from the oven and cooled.
  7. Once the bacon is done, remove from oven and carefully lift wire rack out of pan. Now is the time to nibble on the pecans in the pan or save them for salad toppings later. Drizzle Vermont Maple Balsamic over bacon and enjoy.
Notes & Suggestions
There is much debate about no-nitrite bacon and the uncured variety. Personally, we prefer to select bacon that is minimally processed, from pastured animals raised on smaller farms, if at all possible.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: Serves 4

Shared on the following Blog Hops:
The Nourishing Gourmet Pennywise Platter Thursday
Real Food Whole Health Fresh Bites Friday
Real Food Forager Fat Tuesday

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16 Responses to Pecan & Maple Balsamic Bacon

  1. Nancy/SpicieFoodie January 23, 2013 at 2:06 pm #

    I could care less about what foods are in and which are cliched. If I like it I’m eating it any time I want. So Judy keep the bacon coming.:) I love this it’s such a great idea. Thanks for sharing.
    Nancy/SpicieFoodie recently posted..Mandarin Ginger Tea By Candle Light and YBR NoticeMy Profile

    • Judy January 24, 2013 at 6:14 am #

      I agree, Nancy. It’s funny how some ‘decide’ what in and what’s out. In the recent issue of Bon Appetit they mentioned kale has been done enough and it’s time to move on. This plays to more fad than food — in my opinion, good food is just good food.
      Thanks for stopping by, always good to hear from you. :)

  2. john@kitchenriffs January 23, 2013 at 6:54 pm #

    Great recipe! I’ve made something similar in the past, but you’ve taken it to a whole ‘nother level. Really great flavor combo – such good stuff. Who wouldn’t love to get this as a gift? ;-) Thanks.
    john@kitchenriffs recently posted..Hot and Sour SoupMy Profile

    • Judy January 24, 2013 at 6:18 am #

      Thanks, John, it is good stuff. I guess one could really judge the gift by the interest to make it again, which is why I’ve been trying to get it posted — he wanted to make it for his friends. :)
      Judy recently posted..Pecan & Maple Balsamic BaconMy Profile

  3. Linda January 24, 2013 at 6:30 am #

    Oh my!! I’ve got to make this immediately!! So until I purchase and receive this maple balsamic, could I not just stir together the two?? ;)

    I love finding stores and products like these. Thanks so much for sharing!
    Linda recently posted..Ricotta MeatloafMy Profile

    • Judy January 25, 2013 at 7:31 am #

      Hmm, I wondered that, but haven’t tried it yet. What I can tell you is the flavors are balanced — balsamic and maple — I’m not sure how much maple syrup it would take without making it too sweet. It may require a natural maple flavoring rather than syrup to bring the maple forward. Tasty kitchen fun no matter what!

  4. Raymund January 24, 2013 at 10:30 pm #

    Wow, my jaw just dropped. That looks awesome
    Raymund recently posted..Devilled Chicken and MangoesMy Profile

  5. ChgoJohn January 25, 2013 at 8:54 am #

    Maple flavored bacon I know of. Maple Balsamic vinegar? Wow! A product whose time has come! A number of specialty Balsamic vinegars are appearing in small shops. For Christmas, I received a Fig Balsamic. I’ve yet to try it. I don’t want to break the seal for just anything, :)
    ChgoJohn recently posted..The Lasagna of My People — Lasagna dei BartoliniMy Profile

    • Judy January 28, 2013 at 6:32 am #

      Mmm, the fig balsamic is wonderful with goat cheese as an appetizer. I think it pares well with the Blood Orange and the Tuscan Herb EVOO … you have very thoughtful gift-givers. :)

  6. Linda @ Axiom at Home January 25, 2013 at 9:19 am #

    Sounds wonderful!
    Linda @ Axiom at Home recently posted..To Bra or Not To Bra – Part 2My Profile

  7. Jed Gray (sportsglutton) January 27, 2013 at 9:01 am #

    This sounds like a crazy good idea to improve bacon Judy. Love it!
    Jed Gray (sportsglutton) recently posted..Thirsty Thursday: Peak Organic’s The Maple CollectionMy Profile

  8. Karen (Back Road Journal) January 27, 2013 at 11:33 am #

    I can imagine people fighting over the last piece of this bacon. :)
    Karen (Back Road Journal) recently posted..New England Clam ChowderMy Profile

    • Judy January 28, 2013 at 6:34 am #

      Karen, that is so true — sweet and salty is so hard to stop eating!

  9. Shut Up & Cook | The Attainable Gourmet January 27, 2013 at 2:19 pm #

    I’m with you…what isn’t better with the addition of bacon. Not to mention seriously fancy bacon such as this. YUM!
    Shut Up & Cook | The Attainable Gourmet recently posted..No Such Thing as “Close Enough”: Lemon Bars (Gluten Free Option)My Profile

  10. Ashley @thedrivencook February 11, 2013 at 7:00 am #

    Wow, this bacon looks divine! Love the combo of maple and pecans. I could imagine just snacking on this!

  11. -h(@taste-buds) February 12, 2013 at 12:03 pm #

    I’m not even the hugest fan of bacon, but this sure caught my attention. I will have to make this for the next dinner I have, because it looks so good.

    -h
    -h(@taste-buds) recently posted..Thai Green Curry (Gaeng Kiaw Wan)My Profile

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