Friday, November 25, 2011

"There's No Reason to Let These Cool Completely"

This year my birthday present to my dear friend Leslie was a pan of Bacon-Bourbon Brownies with Pecans. She loves bacon, she loves brownies and I love to bake. It was decided that I would make them over Thanksgiving weekend while I was visiting.

I couldn't actually eat the brownies because I'm a vegetarian and there is plenty of bacon and bacon fat in the recipe. (Les' dog couldn't have a taste either, so both had to sit and watch her eat them.)

Her review: They are thick and fudgy and not too sweet or sugary. "I'm putting bacon and bourbon in everything now."

My version
Photo by the birthday girl Leslie Ryann McKellar

Bacon-Bourbon Brownies With Pecans:

1/2 C. pecans
1/2 pound sliced bacon
8 oz. bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1 stick plus 2 T. unsalted butter
1 C. granulated sugar
1/2 packed C. light brown sugar
3 T. bourbon
4 large eggs
1 t. salt
1/4 C. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 C. all-purpose flour

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread the pecans in a pie plate and toast for about 8 minutes, until fragrant. Let cool, then coarsely chop the nuts.

In a skillet, cook the bacon over moderate heat, turning once, until crisp, 6 minutes. Drain on paper towels and let cool; reserve 3 tablespoons of the fat. Finely chop the bacon.

In a saucepan, combine both chocolates with the butter and stir over very low heat, until melted; scrape into a large bowl. Using a handheld electric mixer, beat in both sugars with the reserved 3 tablespoons of bacon fat. Beat in the bourbon. Add the eggs and salt and beat until smooth. Sift the cocoa and flour into the bowl and beat until blended.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and sprinkle the bacon and pecans on top. Bake for about 50 minutes, until the brownies are set around the edges but slightly wobbly in the center; a toothpick inserted into the center should have some batter clinging to it. Transfer the pan to a rack and let the brownies cool completely.

***I used the 6 tablespoons of cocoa with 2 tablespoons of butter to make the 2 ounces of unsweetened chocolate.
***Leslie cut into them before they were completely cool. Let's be honest, brownies are best warm out of the oven.
***I found the recipe here: Food & Wine

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