black pepper maple candied bacon
The best maple candied bacon with black pepper. Just three ingredients and 5 minutes of prep to make. Using the oven, pure maple syrup and a sheet of parchment are key to getting great, fool-proof results.
One Last Stop on My Book Tour…
Yesterday I drove all the way up to the far northeastern corner of Vermont.
I was so far north that at one point I passed a sign that said “Welcome to Vermont.” Um, it was news to me that I’d ever left Vermont in the first place! My cell phone texted me “Welcome to Canada” and gave me information about roaming while I was out of the country!
In other words, I was pretty much as close to Canada as I could get, while not actually being in Canada.
The reason for this trip north was one of my final stops on my cookbook promotion tour. Though I did do a big push in October last year when my cookbook first came out, this being maple sugaring season, there has been a second book tour of sorts this past month. I have been cooking for and traveling to maple-themed events all over the Northeast. I was in Maine, Boston, and I have had three events here in Vermont. I’ve had radio interviews, newspaper interviews, television appearances… The whole nine!
You’re probably wondering why I would go all the way up to the Canadian border to such a rural place for a book event (and when I saw that sign that said Canada with a left arrow and Canaan with a right arrow, I was wondering the same thing). But when I arrived at my destination it was clear this would be a great stop.
April’s Maple was where I was going, and I was there to share my book with a private group from the Omni Hotel Group and the International Maple Syrup Institute. This group from Omni came to Vermont, New Hampshire and to Montreal to immerse themselves in the subject of pure maple syrup.
After touring the sugar woods and the sugarhouse, the group of 20 (including executive and regional hotel chefs, writers, videographers, maple syrup experts and Omni Hotel executives) came inside for lunch. Where I was waiting.
I worked with a caterer to come up with a menu of recipes from my book for them. And the staff at April’s sprang into action to get everybody fed. All the while, I got to do a live cooking demo and talk about some of what I know about cooking with maple, the flavors of pure maple syrup and tips for subbing maple syrup into a recipe that calls for white sugar.
So what did I serve this group of VIPs, you’re wondering?
(By the way, all the recipes came from Maple: 100 Sweet and Savory Recipes Featuring Pure Maple Syrup.)
- Spinach Salad with maple-candied bacon, blue cheese and radishes
- Maple balsamic vinaigrette
- Cider Brined Pork Loin
- Maple Apple Chutney
- German Potato Salad
- Maple Glazed Carrots
It was a feast!
Ironically, I was pretty focused on my talking points, my cooking demo and my specific responsibilities, so I actually skipped lunch myself, and didn’t get to eat my own lunch (which was yogurt and granola and totally lame by comparison) in my car on the way home! The only thing I did eat while I was there was a strip of the maple candied bacon while chatting with the caterer in the back kitchen. Man was that good! I drove home completely exhausted with a car full of dishes. And I went to bed at 7:50.
When I woke up in the morning, I had one thing on my brain. More maple candied bacon!!! I had planned to share a recipe with you today that I was going to call “Super Green Antioxidant Smoothie” today. I shit you not. It needed more work so instead this is what I did. Hey, everything in moderation, right?!
How to Candy Bacon
Making candied maple pepper bacon is so much easier than you’d think. You really don’t have to do anything fancy — just bake the bacon, drizzle on a little maple syrup, and bake a little more! Here’s how I make this maple candied bacon recipe:
1. Prepare the baking tray — Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat. It’s super important that you line the baking tray, otherwise the candied bacon might stick to it.
2. Bake the bacon — Bake the bacon until it has rendered its fat and becomes crispy. Remove the bacon from oven, and carefully pour as much bacon fat off the pan as possible.
3. Drizzle with maple syrup, then bake again — Drizzle maple syrup over the bacon and sprinkle with black pepper. Return the bacon to the oven and bake, turning bacon over once, until the maple syrup becomes bubbly and coats the bacon. Let the bacon cool completely, then remove from the parchment and break into pieces before serving.
Cooks Notes for Making Maple Candied Bacon
This black pepper maple candied bacon will last for several days at room temperature. Store loosely covered. If it is humid out, it may become sticky. Break it into pieces and add to a salad or wrap like these awesome Bacon Cobb Lettuce Wraps by Perry’s Plate. Or use the candied maple pepper bacon as a crunchy sweet and savory topping. Or just eat it while standing in the kitchen!
When was the last time you went to bed before 8pm?
Have you had maple candied bacon before?
Have you ever been to a sugar house or seen sugaring lines in a maple forest before?
More Easy Bacon Recipes:
Red, White, and Bleu Potato Salad with Horseradish and Bacon
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This maple candied bacon takes just 3 ingredients to make! Using the oven, pure maple syrup, & parchment paper are key to getting foolproof results.
- 1 10-ounce package uncured smoked bacon (10 strips)
- 1/3 cup pure maple syrup, dark or amber
- ½ teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat.
- Lay bacon out on the baking sheet. Bake until the bacon has rendered its fat and has become crispy, 16 to 22 minutes. Remove bacon from oven, and carefully pour as much bacon fat off the pan as possible. Rearrange the bacon if necessary. Drizzle maple syrup over the bacon, dividing evently. Sprinkle with black pepper.
- Return the bacon to the oven and bake, turning bacon over once, until the maple syrup becomes bubbly and coats the bacon, 7 to 10 minutes. Let cool, remove from parchment*, then break into pieces if desired before serving.
Note* if the bacon hardens too much and it is hard to peel off the parchment, place the baking sheet into a warm oven for 4 to 6 minutes until it becomes slightly tacky again. Remove it to a clean piece of parchment.
- Serving Size: 1 strip
- Calories: 160
- Sugar: 9 g
- Sodium: 454 mg
- Fat: 9 g
- Saturated Fat: 3 g
- Carbohydrates: 9 g
- Fiber: 0 g
- Protein: 11 g