Thinking of making some jam? Look at cured, smoked meats for inspiration. Let’s pick bacon—the cured meat that has a major cult following—and turn it into a rich, savoury, chunky and delightful jam. This braised bacon goodness can be slathered on just about everything—toast, chips, crackers, eggs, in a sandwich, and a burger. Our personal fave is to eat it straight from the jar. Dive right in and make bacon jam at home today with this easy recipe:
750g bacon, cut into small 1-inch pieces or smaller
2 cups onions, chopped
1 tbsp garlic, finely chopped
¾ cup coffee, black
½ cup apple cider vinegar
¼ cup maple syrup
½ cup brown sugar
Salt to taste
Black pepper or mild chilli powder for seasoning
1. In a heavy-bottomed pot, cook the bacon on medium heat. Don’t preheat the pot because as the temperature rises, more of the bacon juice will be released, which will help us later. Keep stirring and cook till the bacon turns brown and crispy and sheds its flab. A key to know whether the bacon has been optimally cooked is that the pot will become foamy with bacon grease.
2. Remove the crispy bits from the pot and place them on a tissue so that any excess grease is taken care of. Let the bacon cool and you can cut them into smaller bits, if you like.
3. Don’t drain the pot of the bacon lard, but if you feel it’s too much, you may reduce it. Toss in the onions and garlic into the grease. Stir frequently and sauté until they soften and turn translucent. Continue cooking on medium heat.
4. Add the apple cider vinegar, followed by maple syrup, and finally a small bowl of brown sugar. Stir regularly.
5. Season with salt and pepper/chilli powder and mix well.
6. Toss in the cooked bacon. Stir to combine. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally if necessary. If you feel the jam lacks a glossy appearance, top it off with a drizzle of olive oil. A quick stir and let the bacon jam cool down.
7. If you are happy with the consistency—thick and chunky—then your jam is ready. Else, transfer to a blender and pulse a few times to puree the larger pieces. Ensure that the jam doesn’t become pasty.
Bacon jam is best enjoyed at room temperature. It can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to a month, but knowing how delish this sweet-and-savoury goodness is, we’re sure it’s not going to last that long!
Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Creative by Vartika Pahuja