I first heard about this rather bizarre concept from the blogger Morta Di Fame (meaning literally dying to eat, a concept I can wholly understand). She linked to a recipe for Bacon Jam which was originally a product that a company called Skillet Foods makes and sends around the United States. Knowing that I'd have no chance of getting my greedy paws on a jar I simply daydreamed about it and for every day since I saw it, I'd think about it. I'd eat eggs and think "This would go so well with that Bacon Jam" and eat some slices of tomato on sourdough and think "Something is missing, I think it's bacon jam!" and I became somewhat of a food stalker thinking about it day and night until I got my hands on some double smoked bacon and the rest as they say, is eating history.
I should add this obsessiveness to my next10 or 12 Things You Should Know About Food Bloggers. Sometimes, when we hear of a recipe, we just cannot get it out of our minds and it preoccupies our thoughts for all waking (and sometimes sleeping) hours. We suddenly won't rest until we do this recipe. And you may know that Bacon is my Waterloo. I give up and surrender my worldly possessions to this smoked meat.
I cooked it for two hours, watching the shade go from pink to a dark, glistening brown and then pulverised it in the food processor and tasted it. It was fabulous. I've developed this rather annoying habit of High Fiving people (which worries me somewhat as I wonder if it goes along with speaking about yourself in the third person) and if I were anyone else around I would have High Fived them. This was good stuff indeed. I don't know how it compares with the Skillet Foods Bacon Jam as I've never tried it but this is good on it's own and doesn't need to be an imitation.
You can do this with regular bacon but smoked or double smoked bacon is best to convey the bacon flavour but it is by all definitions delicious. if you use regular bacon the addition of liquid smoke might be a good idea to replace the smokiness. Sweetish (it is after all a jam) and spicy (although the spiciness can be adjusted to your taste) the savoury goodness of it and the versatility meant that after 4 days, the jar of this bacony friend was depleted. During this past long weekend I asked Mr NQN what he wanted every day for breakfast and the answer was: "That Bacon Jam".
So tell me Dear Reader, do you get obsessive about recipes or food items? If so, what food was your latest obsession?
An Original Recipe by Not Quite Nigella
500grams/1 pound smoked bacon (or use regular bacon and liquid smoke)
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 medium brown onion sliced
3 tablespoons brown sugar
Tabasco sauce (according to taste)
1 cup coffee
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup maple syrup
Black pepper to taste
Step 1 - In a non stick pan, fry the bacon in batches until lightly browned and beginning to crisp. Using a pair of scissors cut into 1 inch pieces.
Step 2 - Fry the onion and garlic in the rendered bacon fat on medium heat until translucent.
After 5 minutes of cooking
Step 3 - Transfer the bacon, onion and garlic into a heavy based cast iron pot and add the rest of the ingredients except for the water. Simmer for 2 hours adding 1/4 of a cup of water every 25-30 minutes or so and stirring.
After 30 minutes-1 hour of cooking
After 2 hours of cooking
Step 4 - When ready, cool for about 15-20 minutes and then place in a food processor. Pulse for 2-3 seconds so that you leave some texture to the "jam" or of course you could keep whizzing and make it a smoother and more paste like.