Thursday, November 3, 2011

Apple-Bacon Bars with Bourbon-Almond Glaze

I had plans to go apple picking last Saturday, but there were two teensy little problems with that: 1. there were no apples left on the trees (it turns out apple picking season had ended two weeks earlier) and 2. it snowed! So I was left with apples on the brain (it's a rare condition, but totally treatable with either pie, turnovers, sauce or bars). I opted for bars, but decided to pimp mine out a little by adding candied bacon bits and bourbon (what?, it's not like I know how to do it to my Honda).

Yield: 2 to 3 dozen

Candied Bacon:
6 strips bacon
1/4 cup light brown sugar

3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3 sticks unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2/3 cup milk
2 large eggs, whites and yolks separated

1 1/4 cups cornflakes
10 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Bourbon-Almond Glaze:
3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon bourbon (can substitute milk)
3/4 teaspoon almond extract

Candied Bacon:
1.       Preheat oven to 400º F.

2.       Lay strips of bacon on a baking sheet lined with a foil (shiny side down).

3.       Sprinkle 1 ½-2 teaspoons sugar evenly over each strip of bacon, depending on length.

4.       Bake for 12-16 minutes. Midway during baking, flip the bacon strips over and drag them through the dark, syrupy liquid that's collected on the baking sheet. Continue to bake until as dark as mahogany. Remove from oven and cool the strips on a wire rack.

5.       Once crisp and cool, chop roughly into bits. Can be made ahead and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 1 day, or in the freezer for up to 1 month.

6.       Preheat oven to 375º F.

7.       Combine the flour and salt in a food processor. Add the butter and pulse on & off until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Beat the egg yolks and milk together. Gradually add the milk mixture to the processor (pulsing a few times after each addition) until the dough can be formed into a ball (add more milk if needed). Shape dough into 2 disks (one just slightly larger than the other), wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

8.       On a lightly floured surface, roll the larger dough disk into a rectangle (large enough to cover the bottom and sides of a 9- x 13-inch pan). Lay the dough in the pan (trim any overhang, but leave enough on top to pinch together with the other dough later).

9.       Scatter the cornflakes over the dough. Arrange apple slices over the top of the cornflakes. Sprinkle the sugar, cinnamon and bacon over the apples.

10.   Roll the remaining dough into a rectangle (large enough to cover the top of the pan). Lay the dough over the filling; trim and pinch the edges of the two crusts together (using either your fingers or a fork). Beat the reserved egg whites until foamy, and brush onto the top crust. Poke a few holes in the top with a fork (to allow steam to escape).

11.   Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until golden brown. Drizzle with glaze while still warm. Let cool before cutting into bars.

12.   In a small bowl, beat the confectioners' sugar, bourbon, and almond extract until smooth (add a few drops of milk or water if needed to thin).

adapted from Danish Pastry Apple Bars II by LONDONER on
flour, salt and butter
milk and egg yolk pulsed in
dough disks
dough rolled into a rough rectangle
dough in pan
(If it rips at all, you can just patch it back together.)
bacon sprinkled with brown sugar
candied bacon

I used a mix of granny smith and honeycrisp.
cornflakes sprinkled on the bottom

The cornflakes soak up the juices from the apples
and keep the bottom crust from getting soggy.
sliced apples in the pan
sprinkled with sugar, cinnamon and candied bacon
dough on top
brushing with egg white
poked with fork
adding bourbon to confectioners' sugar
drizzling on the glaze
drizzled with glaze
cut cross-section

1 comment:

BarelyKnitTogether said...

I think this will be my next potluck take-along. Surprise, homeschool mommies! It's bourbon! Looks scrumptious.

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