I honestly loved taking the pictures and writing this post. Writing a post is much easier when you can prepare something that you love so much and you enjoy being able to take pictures and write about it. I love caramel, butter, cream and bacon. Since working with bacon from Eden Farms my relationship with bacon has changed. I use way too much bacon. This bacon is thick cut, smoked and as tender as they come. When I was reading a recipe for salted caramel gelato I wanted to drop everything I was doing and immediately prepare the recipe. Then it came to me: smoked bacon and salted caramel, heaven! They go together so well.
Cook a half pound of bacon on a wire rack in the oven until crisp. Drain the bacon and then chop into small pieces.
Lightly oil a large cookie sheet, set aside.
There are a lot of ways to caramelize sugar and I find that this is the easiest, with minimal time and without burning. Start out by placing a thick heavy duty sauce pot on high heat and let it heat up a little before adding the sugar. You will need one cup of sugar and 1 teaspoon of sea salt. I used a smoky Hawaiian sea salt. Add just about a quarter of the sugar while stirring with a wooden spoon.
The sugar will caramelize quickly and as it caramelizes add another quarter cup of the sugar and repeat until all the sugar is caramelized.
Add the sea salt and the chopped bacon. Spread the mixture onto the greased cookie sheet and cool. Chop the bacon brittle into small pieces and then place them in the refrigerator to chill.
In another large sauce pan caramelize 1 1/2 cups of sugar using the same method as above.
Add 1 teaspoon of sea salt and 1/2 cup of salted butter. Stir until all the butter is melted.
Stir in 2 cups of heavy whipping cream and 4 cups of whole milk.
Add one Tablespoon of pure vanilla extract.
The mixture will seize up a little, just keep stirring over medium heat until all of the caramelized sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat. In a mixing bowl add 10 egg yolks. To temper, pour half of the warm cream mixture into the yolks and then pour this back into the sauce pot with the warm cream mixture. Place back on the stove and heat over medium heat until thick and coats the back of a spoon.
Strain mixture through a fine strainer into a mixing bowl. Set this bowl over a ice bath to cool quickly. When cool cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate over night.
Always cool your ice cream maker a little before adding the custard. When gelato is finished fold in the bacon brittle and freeze.
If I don’t say so myself, I just love this shot.