Sunday, March 8, 2015

Caramelized Onion and Bacon Jam

Check it, y'all,
Onion and Bacon jam is magic.
It is the combination of bacon, onions and time. By adding some cheese, maybe some bread, you've got something just...well, amazing.

What this recipe will take is patience; love and sweet patience. Which anyone who knows me will tell you I have very little patience for anything, but I do, I swear...especially when it makes my burger taste bonkers! Yeah, I said bonkers.

Now what people don't tell you about caramelizing onions is that it takes about 45 minutes to an hour to get the color and flavor really deep and caramelized. TV magic just makes them appear in like 10 minutes tops. But you gotta keep 'em on low heat, slowly cooking, and stirring the onions without burning them. Just be patient, control your heat and keep stirring.

Caramelized Onion and Bacon Jam
1/2 pound smoked thick-cut bacon
2 medium-sized onions,
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon mustard powder
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1.  Cut the onions in half so that both pieces have the root end attached. Cut the ends off of both pieces and remove the skin. Place the onion cut-side-down on your cutting board and slice them into 1/2-inch crescents. To do this, cut slices starting 1/2 inch from the bottom of the onion, at a 45 degree angle, working your way up the onion until your knife is at 90 degrees, then back down the other side.
2.  Cut the bacon into 1/4 inch strips. In a large stainless steel skillet, over medium-high heat, cook the bacon, then drain on a paper towel, leaving the fat in the pan.
3.  Add the onions and stir quickly to coat each piece in the bacon fat. Once the onions are hot, turn the heat down to medium, and keep stirring until the heat has stabilized.
4.  Over the next few minutes, slow down the stirring and turn the heat down a little more so that the pan is still hot, but the onions will not burn. You want to completely avoid browned pieces. This whole process will take about 10 minutes.
5.  Cook the onions over medium-low heat, stirring every few minutes for the next 30-40 minutes. Once the onions are soft, and starting to caramelize, turn the heat back up to medium, stir in the butter, and let it melt before stirring in. Add the mustard powder to the butter and stir until combined, then add the brown sugar, and stir to gently combine everything.
6.  Season with the salt and pepper, then stir the bacon back in. By now, you will have a lovely, caramelized mixture of bacon and onions. Taste, then add the apple cider vinegar. Adjust the seasoning as desired, maybe adding some cayenne pepper, or chili powder for a little heat.  

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