Friday, February 10, 2012

Bacon and Cashew Caramel Corn

Bacon...Caramel...Popcorn. There's really no need to say anything more.


Perhaps one of the most delicious and addictive snacks you'll ever taste. Salty, sweet, crunchy flavors bursting with hints of smokey bacon bits. The combination of this palette is so interesting, you'll be hooked  and left hungry for more, as you try to decipher all the different textures. I got the idea for this recipe after reading about Colt & Gray taking the Denver dining scene by storm with their upscale bar snacks. Their specialty....Bacon and Cashew Caramel Corn. They go on to describe how perfect this snack pairs with a Bourbon cocktail. Sounds incredible, but I think it also would be a perfect snack to pair with a nice cold beer. Try serving it up on game day, and you'll surely score a touchdown!




Bacon and Cashew Caramel Corn
Adapted from About.com Candy


Ingredients:
6 sliced bacon
5 cups popcorn, popped
1/2 cup brown sugar
4 tbsp butter
2 tbsp light corn syrup
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/3 cup cashews


Directions:
Preheat oven to 250* and line a cooking sheet with aluminum foil. Spray the foil with a nonstick cooking spray. Cook bacon in a skillet (I used a bacon cooker) and drain the fat. Once cool, chop the bacon into half inch pieces. Combine the bacon, popcorn and cashews in a large bowl and toss together.
In a small saucepan, combine the brown sugar, butter and corn syrup over medium heat. Continue cooking until the sugar reaches 238*F (about 3-4 mins). Once the temperature has been reached, remove from heat, add the baking soda, and stir vigorously. The mixture should start to foam up.
Quickly pour the sugar mixture of the popcorn, buts and bacon and stir together until everything has been entirely coated in caramel. Spread the popcorn out over the lined baking sheet. Bake for approx. 45 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes. Once it's light brown and crunchy, remove from the oven and allow it to cool. Store in an airtight container for up to one week.



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