Caramel. Chocolate. Bacon.
I know it sounds like a strange flavor combination. I was doubtful, too.
But after my husband came home raving about an appetizer called the “mason of bacon” from Crafted, a favorite local restaurant, I knew I needed to recreate the dish at home. (Crafted is the same restaurant that inspired me to make these homemade tortilla chips.)
This caramel chocolate bacon confection would make a great Valentine’s Day breakfast, dessert or appetizer.
When you make this for your sweetie, be sure to use a high-quality, thick-cut bacon. Applewood smoked is always a good choice.
If you’re feeling extra sweet and industrious, make a batch of brown sugar and pepper candied bacon to serve along with the caramel and chocolate sauce.
We’re divided in our house on which flavor combo is better — caramel bacon or chocolate bacon.
I prefer the sweeter caramel sauce paired with the salty bacon.
But my husband likes the chocolate sauce best, just as he did at the restaurant.
The chocolate sauce isn’t overly sweet, so if you’re a fan of dark chocolate, you’ll probably really like it. If you like a sweeter milk chocolate, feel free to add more sugar to the recipe to tweak it to your tastes.
While we each preferred one sauce over the other, we discovered that they’re best together.
Kind of like us.
How’s that for a Valentine’s Day love story?
Now here the the recipes for those delicious caramel and chocolate bacon sauces:
- ½ cup brown sugar, packed
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 4 Tablespoons butter
- ½ cup half-and-half or heavy cream
- pinch of salt, plus more to taste
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla
- Combine sugars, butter, half-and-half and pinch of salt in a heavy sauce pan over low heat.
- Stir occasionally until the sugar liquefies and the butter melts and develops a delicious brown caramel color and aroma, about 5 to 7 minutes.
- Let the caramel mixture come to a boil and cook for a minute or two longer.
- Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and another pinch of salt, to taste.
- The mixture will still be fairly liquid, but it will thicken as it cools.
- Allow to cool slightly in the pan, then transfer to a bowl or glass jar. Do not scrape any granular bits of sugar from the side of the pan, as this can cause your caramel to become grainy as it cools.
- Refrigerate until cool and thick.
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup sugar
- ⅔ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Combine water and sugar in a heavy bottom saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar is dissolved.
- Add cocoa powder and salt and simmer for 3 minutes until slightly thickened, stirring or whisking constantly.
- Remove from heat and add vanilla, stirring to incorporate.
- Cool and transfer to a glass jar.
Remember, no naked bacon on Valentine’s Day.
Be sure to check out these other recipes.
Homemade Tortilla Chips inspired by Crafted