Since I haven’t had time to don the entire Ursula/Vanessa costume for pictures yet, let’s talk about other stuff…
This was just a fun little thing to do for breakfast one weekend, though I admit the bacon cookies were a bit time-intensive.
It all started with this recipe for shortbread cookies that looked like strips of bacon, seasoned with applewood-smoked salt. And since my husband is a big fan of all things bacon, I knew I had to try making them. I even had a little baggie of the salt left over from a long-ago gift. So I whipped up the dough (easiest dough ever), and set to work coloring it.
That was when I discovered that Wilton food coloring gels are just useless. For dough, at least. It took SO much gel to make even the slightest dent in the color change I wanted, and in the end I had to use not only cocoa, but also powdered black food coloring to get the brownish shades I was looking for. Remind me to go with Americolor next time.
Unfortunately, by the time I finished kneading in all the color, my dough was overly soft and starting to melt in my hands, so I wasn’t as careful as I should’ve been in assembling my layers of “meat” and “fat” for my bacon slab. If I were to do it again, I’d be sure to make them a lot smoother and less splotchy-looking. Also, next time I’d use a longer, thinner knife to allow for smoother slices.
The salt was also a disappointment, though that was entirely my own fault– it was just too old, and all of the volatile compounds that gave it the “smoky” flavor had long since dissipated. But the salt was still salty, anyway, and along with the ground pepper it added some interest to the finished cookies. The slight browning from the baking also added a touch of realism, though the cookies did break pretty easily after being baked.
Next up were the eggs. I’d originally intended to use canned apricot halves, but during my last-minute shopping I couldn’t find any in the stores. I settled on getting a 15-oz can of peach slices (drained) and pureeing them. Then, taking my cue from some “vegan peach curd” recipes online, I added a tablespoon of cornstarch, 1/4 cup of sugar, and some lemon juice, and heated the whole thing until it thickened up.
Of course, then I put it out in a snowdrift on our back deck to cool it down quickly, and forgot about it overnight, so when I went to get it the next morning (it was covered in plastic wrap, don’t worry), it had gotten some ice crystals in it, making it harder to handle. But when scooped with a wet tablespoon and plopped in a puddle of vanilla yogurt, it looked remarkably like an egg yolk.
Anyway, I served the Bacon and Eggs with a slice of chocolate bread from When Pigs Fly Bakery, and called it a day. Admittedly an odd combination of flavors, but it worked, and it was a lot of fun!