Bacon and Home Brewed Beer!
I made this for a friend's Superbowl party this year. My friend is a fellow Homebrewer, so I decided to make an appetizer that used bacon glazed with my Homebrewed Amber Ale and seasoning. It was a GREAT hit!
To start, get the following:
Pillsbury Crescent Rolls (or similar)
BACON (I find that the Thick Cut Bacon that you get from the Butcher at your local grocery store is better than all the name brands and it's cheaper)
Misc. Seasonings to taste: I used a mixture of Cumin, Garlic Salt, Black Pepper, and Cardamom
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NEXT: Let's start cooking!
Step 1: Start Cooking (and Drinking)
To make the glaze, I measured out a cup and a half of my Amber Ale and poured the rest in a glass for myself. (I brewed it myself, if you like mixing flavor in cooking, you'd probably like brewing beer too, you can make awesome flavor combinations that you can't find commercially. It's pretty easy and educational. Anyway, back to the cooking..)
Pour the beer into pot and add about the same amount of brown sugar (1.5 cups). I probably used a 1:1 Ratio of beer to Sugar. Add the seasoning you want to taste in the final product. I used between 0.5-1 Teaspoon of Cumin and Cardamom with about a Tablespoon Each of Garlic Salt and Black Pepper. I brought the mixture to a boil and made sure to keep stirring until the brown sugar was dissolved. You don't want it to stay at the bottom of the pot and burn.
After the flavors blended for 5 minutes or so, I got my bacon out and dipped it in the glaze before sticking it on the baking rack. If you haven't tried baking Bacon, you need to. It comes out great! I find that I like it better when I use a baking rack and put it on the sheet. Most of the fat renders out and sits below the bacon so that it's not overly greasy. There are different opinions on how long and what temperature to cook this at, but I usually cook it at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes depending on bacon thickness. Just check on it until you get the desired crispiness. I pulled the sheet out a few times during baking to apply the glaze on the bacon again with a silicone brush. Keep reducing this beer mixture down to concentrate the flavors for a drizzle at the end. While it's cooking, get the dough set up.
(My love of Homebrewing Beer led me to wanting a "Homebrew" bottle opener. I couldn't find one I liked, so I 3d printed one of my own. People started asking for them, so I made a whole variety of them. Check it out here if you're interested.)
Step 2: Dough and Finishing
I used Pillsbury Crescent Roll dough to make things easy. It actually rolled out pretty perfectly on my sheet pan. Once I had the dough on the sheet, I used a fork and poked a bunch of holes all over the dough. This dough is usually pretty fluffy once cooked, and I wanted to keep it a little flatter and crispier.
I pre-cooked the dough for about 5-10 minutes before I added toppings because I wanted the crust to stay somewhat crispy. The Bacon and extra glaze were going to go on top and I didn't want it to be soggy.
Once it was to my liking, I chopped up all the bacon and green onions and put them all over the top. I then sprinkled the whole top with more brown sugar because I wanted it to caramelize a bit while the rest cooked and hold everything together. I also drizzled the rest of the Beer/Sugar glaze over the whole top for more seasoning. This all cooked for 15 minutes or so longer. The dough got crispy and the brown sugar on top melted into the toppings. Let it cool for a bit and chop it up into pieces to serve.
Everyone really liked it and said they never had anything like this before. The whole tray was eaten by the end of the game.
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