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5. Alexa Hara – Popped Pig

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Popped Pig is rendered Bacon fat caramel poured over salty popcorn enhanced with an incredible amount of bacon bits so there is one in every bite. It is salty and it’s sweet, but most important of all, the main ingredient is BACON!

8-9 cups of popcorn, pre-popped(O-ke-Doke white) or any other kind works too!
12 tablespoons of butter or 1 and a half sticks of butter
About 2 lbs of Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Bacon
½ cup of rendered bacon fat
3 cups of packed brown sugar
¾ cups of light Karo Syrup or glucose
1 and ½ tsp of baking soda
½ tablespoon of salt

Medium size pot
Oven
Stove or induction
2 non-stick baking pans
1 sheet pan
foil
1 spatula
large heat resistant or metal bowl
1-2 oven mitts
3 pieces of parchment paper or Silpat
Measuring cups and spoons

STEPS TO PIGGY PERFECTION:

1. Pre-Heat oven to 350 F
2. Wrap foil around your baking sheet so it is covered completely
3. Put a piece of parchment on top of the covered baking sheet
4. Align slices of bacon on the baking sheet(do not worry if they touch a bit)
5. Put in the oven at 350 F for 10 minutes
6. After 10 minutes flip the pieces of bacon on the other side so cooking is even
7. Cook for another 10 minutes or until bacon is crispy and stiff
8. Take the pieces off of the sheet pan and take excess oil off with paper towels
9. Once pan is cool enough carefully pour rendered bacon fat into a measuring cup and measure out ½ cup and set aside

1. Turn oven to 210 F
2. While bacon is cooling off put your 8-9 cups of popcorn in your large mixing bowl.
3. In a medium pot add Karo Syrup or glucose, butter, ½ cup of bacon fat, salt and brown sugar all together.
4. Set the heat on your stove high and slowly mix all the ingredients until they dissolve.
5. Let the caramel come to a boil and let it boil for 4 minutes
6. Once it has boiled for 4 minutes take your 1 and ½ teaspoons of baking soda and pour it over the boiling mixture.
7. Turn off the heat and stir with your spatula making sure that it is well incorporated.
8. Once it is incorporated pour over the popcorn in the mixing bowl.
9. The caramel should cover the entire top layer of popcorn.
10. Slowly fold the popcorn with the spatula until almost all pieces have been coated and then divide it into the two baking pans.
11. Put both pans in the oven at 210 F and every 10 minutes take it out and give it a good stir. While you are waiting between stirs take the time to chop all of your cooled bacon into different sized bits.
12. After you have stirred the popcorn 3 times=30 minutes add the bacon into the pans and give it one more stir and put it back in the oven for 10 more minutes
13. After 40 total minutes of baking remove the caramel bacon popcorn from the baking pans onto a Silpat or parchment paper.
14. Separate large bunches of caramel corn and let cool completely
15. Once it has cooled it can be eaten, packaged, and is a perfect salty, sweet snack.

Categories: 2013 AMC

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