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Salty-sweet is hot new food trend

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When Nigella Lawson appeared on the cover of her special issue of Stylist dripping in glorious salted caramel, she lent her support to one of the biggest foodie trends of the coming year – salty-sweet. Think bacon, maple syrup and pancakes, or chocolate-covered pretzels, but taken to extremes – bacon dipped in chocolate and stuffed into doughnuts.

The Telegraph has named Bacon Candy as one of their top ten foodie trends for 2012 and we agree – try Nigella’s unique salted caramel recipes if you don’t believe us!

Nigella also gave our sister brand Emerald Street a rather intriguing recipe for bacon brownies which we made and can confirm are absolutely delicious...

“I haven’t originated the pairing of bacon and chocolate; my introduction to it came via Vosges-Chocolat Mo’s Bacon Bar, available in this country in Selfridges, but these brownies are nonetheless my own act of homage to this unholy union. I don’t deny it sounds weird, but it does really work in a quite straightforward way. Even people who shrink from the very idea find the actual outcome all-too-compelling.

“I like to use Oscar Mayer American-style bacon (which you can now get in UK supermarkets) for this, but if you can’t find it, then just be sure to get streaky bacon that is cut very thin, without the rind, and snip it up into small shards. You don’t really want chewy pieces of bacon, but rather nuggets of intense saltiness within the rich, gooey chocolate squares.”

BACON BROWNIE RECIPE

125g thin rashers of streaky bacon, scissored into small pieces and then chopped fine

2 tsp of golden syrup

150g of soft unsalted butter

250g of soft light brown sugar

75g of best cocoa powder

150g of plain flour

1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda

4 large eggs, beaten

150g of dark chocolate, chopped, or dark chocolate chips/morsels

1. Preheat the oven to 190°C and get out a 25cm square tin and line it, or (as I prefer) a throwaway foil baking tray measuring 30cm x 20cm x 15cm.

2. Heat a heavy based (preferably non stick) frying pan and when warm, add the bacon bits and cook, stirring occasionally until beginning to crisp. Add the syrup, stir again to mix and transfer the sticky bacon bits to a cold surface, either on some foil or a plate. The syrupy bacon juices left behind are just delicious when mopped up with some bread: a cook’s treat!

3. Melt the butter over a gentle heat in a medium sized saucepan and when it’s melted, add the sugar, stirring with a wooden spoon.

4. Now take the pan off the heat and add the cocoa, flour, bicarbonate of soda and stir, then add the beaten eggs and stir again to mix.

5. Add the chopped dark choc or chips and the bacon bits, breaking them up with your hands if necessary. Fold together then pour and scrape into the tin.

6. Place in the oven to cook for 20-25 minutes; you want a little gooeyness inside still.

7. Transfer the tin to a wire rack and sit until cooled a little (but not to the point of coldness) and cut into 16 squares.

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