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Bacon Jam Recipe - How to Make Bacon Jam

Updated on January 4, 2012
Crispy bacon is just beautiful. This is the start.
Crispy bacon is just beautiful. This is the start.
Don't ditch the grease! Make it give you everything it has first!
Don't ditch the grease! Make it give you everything it has first!
Yellow onion, brown sugar, garlic, apple cider vinegar
Yellow onion, brown sugar, garlic, apple cider vinegar
Yes I know I already showed crispy bacon. But it's so nice!
Yes I know I already showed crispy bacon. But it's so nice!
Onions and garlic in the pot!
Onions and garlic in the pot!
Caramelization is almost as lovely as bacon.
Caramelization is almost as lovely as bacon.
All the ingredients are in and beginning the low, slow simmer.
All the ingredients are in and beginning the low, slow simmer.

Bacon Jam!

My sister called me a few months back and asked if I had ever made Bacon Jam. Made it? I'd never even heard of it! Bacon? Jam? You've got to be kidding. But I soon learned that the 'jam' part was a little misleading.

I have no idea who came up with it - and I wish I did. They need to be in the culinary hall of fame - if there were such a place.

I searched this one out and of course had to make some. If it involves pig, it's my friend. The finished product is a tad hard to describe - think of distilling the essence of bacon into a thick, smokey, slightly sweet, slightly salty spread - and you'll begin to get the idea. I've played with this ever since that first batch. This my winner - it's going on a batch of burgers tonight!

  • 1 1/2 lbs bacon, diced
  • 12 ounces country ham, diced
  • 2 large yellow onions, sliced
  • 1 small head garlic, cloves peeled and minced
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup strong black coffee
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  1. In a large Dutch oven, cook bacon until crispy and rendered. Remove from pan and reserve.
  2. Add onions and garlic to the bacon/ham drippings, and sauté until translucent and very fragrant, about 8-10 minutes.
  3. Add bacon back to pan, and add brown sugar, coffee and apple cider vinegar. Bring to a simmer.
  4. Keeping the heat very low – and the contents at a bare simmer, cook for three to four hours, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. The end result will be a very dark brown, extremely fragrant concoction.You'll find it hard to tell at this point what is bacon and what is onion. That's perfect.
  5. If by chance you've gotten past the three hour point, and yours doesn't look like it's approaching the final, dark chocolate colored product, then you may need to skim some of the fat from it. Simply press a spoon into it, and wait for the clear fat to collect in the bowl of the spoon. Leave the brown stuff - that's the flavor elements - you want that. But get rid of as much fat as you can. If your bacon was especially fatty, you may need to remove the extra, so that the other ingredients can finish caramelizing. I've had batches that needed this, and others that didn't.
  6. If you wish, once the jam has cooled a bit, you can pulse it in the food processor so that all the tasty bits are approximately the same size. Place mixture in a mixing bowl, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
  7. Once thoroughly chilled, you’ll be able to pull the congealed fat from the top of the mixture. Just scrape a spoon across the top, and discard.
  8. At this point you’re good to go! Place jam in a glass jar, and put it on anything you want! Biscuits, toast, burgers, potatoes, sandwiches – a dab behind your ears – you get the picture.

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    • SimeyC profile image

      Simon Cook 7 years ago from NJ, USA

      No way - bacon jam - I'm salivating here - so are my dogs! Great recipe - must try this one out! does this work with 'canadian' style bacon, or British bacon...hmmm time to experiment!

    • DixieMockingbird profile image
      Author

      DixieMockingbird 7 years ago from East Tennessee

      I haven't tried those - but I have used 'country' ham - the salt cured ham of the American South and it's fabulous too. Good idea though - hmmmm indeed!

    • profile image

      jennyyeip 7 years ago

      I am going to have to try this. When do you add the country ham and spices? Did I miss this? Or do you use bacon or country ham and not both.

    • DixieMockingbird profile image
      Author

      DixieMockingbird 7 years ago from East Tennessee

      Hey Jenny - when I've used country ham, I mixed it half and half with bacon, and just treat it like you would bacon in the recipe. Then the spices go in when you add the bacon/ham to the caramalized onions. Let me how it turns out - and I'm so glad you want to give it a shot!

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 7 years ago from Southern Georgia

      I can't believe my grandmother never made this stuff. Sounds great! I like me some hog, too!

    • DixieMockingbird profile image
      Author

      DixieMockingbird 7 years ago from East Tennessee

      Thanks Randy! I happen to have quite an affection for the critters myself!

    • profile image

      Randy Bartlett 6 years ago

      What if you can't do Coffee?

    • DixieMockingbird profile image
      Author

      DixieMockingbird 6 years ago from East Tennessee

      You can always leave it out - perhaps try a decaf espresso powder or just go with none!

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