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10 May 2009 @ 08:23 pm
Bacon Chocolate-Chip Cookies, aka Bacon Blasphemy (Baconsphemy?)  
No, I am not joking.
A while back, I saw a post on some food blog about making bacon chocolate-chip cookies. The idea intrigued me-- the combination of smoky, salty, and sweet was just enticing enough to override my inherent preference to avoid bacon (and the small part of my brain that shouted "NO THIS IS WRONG IN EVERY WAY").
But when I saw their efforts, I was disappointed. They produced a regular, moderately chewy chocolate-chip cookie with some chunks of bacon thrown in and a maple glaze on top. That did not appeal to me. I didn't want sweetness with my bacony goodness. I wanted something rich and complex and deliciously terrifying.

First off, the texture of the cookie. Now, I think in this instance, the tender but firm texture of shortbread is infinitely more pleasant than the chewy interior of your average chocolate-chip cookie. The rich, buttery flavor would also add a nice background, but would be neutral enough that it wouldn't take over the other flavors.
As for the chips, while I like sweet and savory, I felt like this needed something richer. And so I instead opted for the darkest chocolate chips I could find: about 72% cocoa. The chips I found were rather large, so I had to try to chop them down to a smaller size. It sort of worked (my kingdom for a properly sharp knife!).
While I liked the idea of adding in some maple notes, maple bacon is uninteresting to me. So I used maple syrup (real syrup, none of this maple-flavored corn syrup crap) as a sweetener in the cookie recipe, and stuck to regular center-cut bacon, which I cooked until it was quite crispy-- chewy bacon is disgusting and I'll stare down anyone who says otherwise-- and crumbled into pieces about the same size as the chocolate chips.

  • 1 cup butter, unsalted, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 2/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 6 strips cooked bacon, crumbled (you can use more, if you like)
  • kosher salt
  • turbinado or another coarse sugar

    Preheat the oven to 325.
    In a large bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, and maple syrup until fluffy and thoroughly combined. Toss in the pinch of salt, and then add in the flour. Stir until just combined.
    Add the bacon and chocolate chips. Pause for just a moment to consider what you are doing. Ignore that tiny, worried voice in your head, and continue.
    The dough will be very wet and soft. You can either roll it up in cling wrap and chill it for an hour (which will firm it up somewhat) before slicing into cookies, or do what I did and just roll out little balls with your hands and squish them into cookie shapes on a parchment-lined baking sheet. You will not want them very big-- these cookies are quite rich, and work best as slightly-more-than-bite-sized morsels.
    Sprinkle each cookie with a tiny bit of Kosher salt and some coarse sugar, at about a 1:2 ratio. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the bottoms of the cookies begin to brown.
    Let cool until you can handle them, and then taste.

    Either curse my name or send me flowers, as applicable.
    Current Mood: amusedamused
    Defying Gravity: cat macros zombychennpug on May 11th, 2009 03:12 am (UTC)
    I may cry. It might be from delight.
    Lady Cyon: Supernatural - Dean NOM NOM NOMwofl_iron on May 20th, 2009 02:14 pm (UTC)
    Hello! I was linked to this by a friend who knows my affinity for bacon. I'm very excited by this recipe! I can't wait to try it out! Thanks so much for writing it down. :]
    sweetest_asylumsweetest_asylum on May 20th, 2009 02:27 pm (UTC)
    wondering if you could substitute bacon grease for the butter...

    and maple syrup? that's awesome. i love bacon and maple syrup together.

    subtl3_splint3rsubtl3splint3r on May 20th, 2009 02:39 pm (UTC)
    icon love! ♥
    Chuckchuckro on August 6th, 2010 01:43 pm (UTC)
    In cookies (and I've done this with chocolate chip cookies) you can substitute rendered and solidified bacon fat for about half the butter or shortening. In pie crust, you can use all bacon fat, but it's not worth it as the flavor comes out as just a generalized umami and not really salty or smoky.
    siliconopolitan on May 20th, 2009 04:29 pm (UTC)
    I don't know if I'll try this; I was pretty disappointed with my attempt at making chili/chocolate biscuits (but I'll gladly accept good recipes to try again). But I'll show it to some baconophiles I know.

    Two questions, though. Why unsalted butter? And why on Earth use Kosher salt? (Save for the delicious irony.)
    chumas on May 20th, 2009 05:03 pm (UTC)
    I use kosher salt because it's got more texture to it. sorta crunchy flaky melt on your tongue stuff.
    the unsalted butter is for a more creamy texture, imho.
    siliconopolitan on May 21st, 2009 01:46 pm (UTC)
    I'd never considered that salt could make a difference texturewise. What a waste of a an education.

    I think we have some 'organic' salt (how I hate that word) with similar properties.

    chumas on May 21st, 2009 01:56 pm (UTC)
    when I grill steaks or other heavily spiced piece of meat, I sprinkle with heavy pretzel salt. sort of like rock salt, but smaller.
    drgaellon on May 20th, 2009 11:07 pm (UTC)
    Most cooks prefer Kosher salt because the larger crystals make it easier to manipulate with your fingers. However, equal volumes of table salt and different brands of Kosher salt have different weights, and therefore different levels of saltiness. If using Diamond Crystal Kosher salt, you need 1.5 times as much compared to table salt; if using Morton's Kosher, you need twice as much.

    I ONLY cook with unsalted butter; that way, I can control how much salt goes into my food. Butter was salted as a means of preserving it; with modern refrigeration, it isn't a necessary step.
    siliconopolitan on May 21st, 2009 01:47 pm (UTC)
    Iono - I've grown up on salted butter. I'm just used to the taste.

    And while I don't know how much salt is in butter, I'd imagine it's neligible compared to the bacon and the sprinkling. Hence my surprise.
    drgaellon on May 21st, 2009 02:27 pm (UTC)
    Yes, it is relatively small. But I know I write all my recipes to use unsalted butter; it's simply habit and a matter of precision - I never write just "butter" in my own recipes because I always use the unsalted. It's a subtle quibble and, particularly in this instance, not even worth the electrons you and I have both wasted on it. :D
    siliconopolitan on May 21st, 2009 02:30 pm (UTC)
    Nah - I don't mind. I actually have some background as a chemist (but not a very good one). It's not a bad thing to be reminded that cooking is just like chemistry.

    Of course, I'm as poor a cook as a chemist.

    Thank you.
    drgaellon on May 21st, 2009 02:34 pm (UTC)
    At its heart, cooking IS chemistry and physics. I could babble at you about Maillard reactions and solute concentration boiling point elevations, but you already get that point. I heartily recommend On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee; it is the definitive text on the science of the kitchen, written for the cook (as opposed to one written for a scientist).
    Neilflick_ on May 21st, 2009 06:45 am (UTC)
    Holy hell!
    I'm making these as soon as humanly possible.
    (Anonymous) on May 21st, 2009 03:54 pm (UTC)
    Mine are baking in the oven now. Thank-you for the recipe!
    il porcupinoil_porcupino on May 21st, 2009 03:55 pm (UTC)
    Sorry for the anon - that was me!
    il porcupino: holy fucking YAY!il_porcupino on May 21st, 2009 04:20 pm (UTC)

    This is... what is this? It's incredible! This is... WOW!

    Thank-you so much for the recipe - my housemate is gonna love this. Hell - even the chef at work will love this! Thank-you! :D
    carta on June 28th, 2009 05:43 pm (UTC)
    Just made these for the family - big hit! We added cut up candied cherries in a few, and those worked out well, also. Thanks!
    Mug-z: cthulusunquistadora on October 4th, 2009 04:09 am (UTC)
    You're beautiful.
    (Also - using Bacon Salt instead of salt is an excellent alteration.)
    Kat, most of the time anywaykdsorceress on November 17th, 2009 11:08 pm (UTC)
    My boyfriend made these for me last August. Thank you thank you thank you THANK YOU!

    (Anonymous) on December 5th, 2009 10:56 pm (UTC)
    Thanks! I am taking these to a cookie swap. I removed the chocolate chips and replaced them with pecans. That way you can taste the bacon more. I also put a little powdered sugar on top. I cant stop eating them!
    ashleydelfin on July 18th, 2011 04:50 am (UTC)
    Just made these with some friends. Mixed reviews. I liked them but I wouldn't bake them too often. The maple dough is delicious, though, my roommate suggested I use it with nuts and maybe dried cranberries and I think I'll do just that. Thank you for the recipe!