A xxx-rated sense of humor
A worry-wart streak
A need to plan
But most of all, I don't cope well with change. This is a trait my dad has as well and not so sure if my brother inherited it, but I dread change. In fact, I will keep myself up for weeks worrying (a mom trait) knowing that a change is coming. Once the change is here though, I am fine...in fact, I'll be the first to tell you that really, it's NOT that bad. In fact, why was I worried at all??
So that being said, my whole world is changing right now. School, personal and professional. At 34 and 3/4 I am heading back to finish my Bachelors. Work is taking on a new dimension with added responsibilities and focuses and personal...well, we'll just go with it's changing (how can it not with school, work and such?).
So it goes without saying when I have something I really like, I don't screw with it. Chocolate chip cookies are in that category for me - I make the same recipe my mom has made since I was a baby and they are the ultimate comfort cookie for me.
But last week, Susan over at Sticky, Gooey, Creamy, Chewy blogged about trying a new cookie. One that she seemed totally enthralled with - Candied Bacon Chocolate Chunk Cookies. Now, I think bacon makes all things better - you can't go wrong with salty, crispy bacon. And I routinely keep recipes for desserts that call for bacon (bacon baklava anyone?) but have yet to actually venture outside my comfort zone and attempt them. This morning though, I brought out the pound of bacon and thought...meh, if everything else is up on it's ear, I may as well make something a bit different.
First the candied bacon. Oh wow....oh man....um...I had to make a second batch of bacon because the first batch was too good to waste on a cookie. Seriously, the sweet and salty taste of this bacon was out of this world! One hint though, if you are using aluminum foil make it big enough so the bacon fat/melted sugar does not hit the cookie sheet at all. It took me half an hour to peel the aluminum foil off.
As for the cookies......well, as I said, once the change is done I'm usually fine. And believe me, I was more than fine with these cookies. The cookie recipe Susan uses was delicious...and the bacon addition? If you like sweet and salty combos, this is the real deal. These cookies were the ultimate sweet and salty combo.
Candied Bacon-Chocolate Chunk Cookies adapted from The Great Book of Chocolate
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 large egg1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup Candied Bacon Bits (recipe follows)
1. Preheat oven to 325F. Line three baking sheets with a Silpat liner or parchment paper.
2. Beat the sugars and butter together until smooth. Mix in the egg, vanilla, and baking soda. Whisk together the flour and salt, then sift them into the batter. Stir in the chocolate chunks and bacon bits.
3. Using a small cookie scoop or a teaspoon, scoop the cookie dough into small balls, about 1-inch in diameter, and place them 2 inches apart on each of the baking sheets.
4. Bake for 14-16 minutes, or until pale golden brown. Rotate sheets halfway through baking for even browning. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.
The cookies can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for 3-4 days, if they last that long!
Makes about 3 dozen 2-inch cookies.
Candied Bacon Bits adapted from David Lebovitz
8 strips bacon
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1. Preheat oven to 400F.
2. Lay the strips of bacon on a baking sheet lined with a silicone mat or aluminum foil, shiny side down.
3. Sprinkle half of the brown sugar evenly over each strip of bacon.
4. Bake for about 15 minutes. Midway during baking, flip the bacon strips over and drag them through the dark, syrupy liquid that’s collected on the baking sheet. Add the rest of the brown sugar and continue to bake until a deep mahogany color. Remove from oven and cool the strips on a wire rack.
5. Once crisp and cooled, chop into little pieces, about the size of grains of rice.
Candied bacon bits can be stored in an airtight container and chilled for a day or so, or stored in the freezer a few weeks ahead.