Saturday, September 3, 2016

Bourbon Bacon Chocolate Chunk Cookies: International Bacon Day

Bourbon Bacon Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Today is International Bacon Day! Here's an easy recipe for Bourbon Bacon Chocolate Chunk Cookies to Celebrate! These cookies contain all the food groups! How can you go wrong with bourbon, bacon and chocolate?

Maker’s Mark has a website that gives fans more of the content and information highlighting the culinary versatility of Maker’s Mark. The site features a section of recipes, selected by chef, Lee Anne Wong. She explains, “My goal in compiling this recipe collection for Maker's Mark was to show the versatility of their handcrafted whisky behind the bar and inspire people to incorporate bourbon into food in ways they may have never thought to. From soups and appetizers to entrees and desserts, I've included it all.” The collection includes appetizers, desserts, entrees, sides and soups, all created by a variety of world renowned chefs and restaurants. Contributors include David Mechlowicz, Director of Food and Beverage at Food Network; Daniel Holzman, Chef & Owner of The Meatball Shop; Antonia Lofaso, Executive Chef and Top Chef Masters Finalist and many more.

Bourbon Bacon Chocolate Chunk Cookies
by Lee Anne Wong, Editor and Culinary Director, Maker's Mark® Virtual Recipe Cookbook

This is one of my signature recipes, with two of my favorite things, bacon and bourbon, accented by chunks of rich, dark chocolate. The smoky, saltiness of the bacon pairs perfectly with the sweetness of the bourbon, chocolate and vanilla flavors. Honestly, these cookies will win you friends and admirers. No joke.

Ingredients
3 Tbsp Maker's Mark® Bourbon
3/4 pound bacon, 1/4-inch dice*
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup sweet butter, softened
1/2 cup reserved bacon fat, chilled
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 tsp Madagascar vanilla extract
2 large eggs
8 ounces dark chocolate, chopped into small pieces**

Directions
In large sauté pan, cook out diced bacon until bacon pieces are golden and crisp. Remove bacon pieces from fat and drain on paper towel. Strain fat through fine sieve and measure out 1/2 cup of bacon fat and chill bacon fat until it congeals and sets.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, chilled bacon fat, granulated sugar, light and dark brown sugars, vanilla and Maker's Mark® Bourbon in large mixer bowl until well combined. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition; gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in cooked bacon pieces and chopped chocolate bits.

Drop by rounded tablespoon onto parchment-lined baking sheets at least 3 inches apart.
Bake in oven for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown.
Let stand for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Keep in dry, airtight container for up to 5 days.

* A fattier sliced bacon is preferred, as lean bacon and turkey bacon will not work for this recipe. ** Use a dark chocolate with 65% cocoa or higher. Anything from a 65%-85% chocolate will work well.

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