Thursday, September 23, 2010

Chocolate Bacon Peanut Crisps

If you saw my post last week for Microwave Peanut Brittle, you know that I had a bit of mess on my hands. I tried to double the recipe and had a mess of sticky, caramel goo overflowing in my microwave. This mishap created a side problem - my candy did not reach brittle stage. So here I had a double batch of bacon peanut caramel instead of brittle.

What to do? After all, this was still edible stuff and shouldn't be just tossed out. A double batch as well. No way was I gonna toss this failed attempt. The problem was I had this stretchy, sticky, ropey mess. It was soft and pliable. In the end I decided to take small bits and dip them in chocolate. I ended up with lovely chocolate candies.

Because it was a mess in the microwave and I can't give you a precise timing to use that way, we are going to go back to the old fashioned stove-top method and use a candy thermometer. Basically my concoction had reached soft ball stage versus hard ball stage and for that we should use the thermometer.

Chocolate Bacon Peanut Clusters

     4 slices of bacon
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. light corn syrup
1 c. unsalted peanuts, skins removed
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
1 lb of dark chocolate

Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.  Grease the foil with butter. Set aside.

Fry the bacon in a skillet until it is crispy. Remove and dry on paper towels. Reserve one tablespoon of bacon grease for later. Take crispy bacon and chop it into very small pieces.

Combine sugar, corn syrup, and peanuts in a medium, nonstick pot. Cook over medium high heat, stirring occasionally. When thermometer reaches 240 degrees, remove from heat and immediately mix in bacon, bacon grease, vanilla, and baking soda.  Pour candy mixture onto foil. Let cool completely.
Cut candy into small pieces. Put back into frig until you are ready to dip in the chocolate.

Break chocolate into small pieces and microwave for 1 minute. Stir. Microwave for another 30-60 seconds or until all the chocolate is melted.

Dip candy bits into chocolate and set onto parchment paper to cool. Enjoy!

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