The first time I was asked to try bacon-chocolate I will admit I did raise an eyebrow. I was completely willing to do it but I was also concerned if it would ruin my favorite food item after sausage, chocolate! I have been known to eat chocolate alongside many food items that made people think I was nuts (i.e pizza, pasta, sandwiches, cheese etc), but I have never combined them into one item before. I was excited to see that I’m not the only person that felt mixing chocolate and a savory item isn’t so bad but in fact it really is tasty! I accepted the piece of bacon chocolate with an open mind and an eager palette.
I was not surprised to see that I really did enjoy it. It is definitely not something I can sit and finish the whole bar in one sitting but for a small treat it is phenomenal. Some people may say “sure it’s easy to finish a chocolate bar in one sitting!”. Well yes, if you eat it like a savage it might be! I noticed that when I shared my bacon-chocolate with other people they just popped it in their mouth whole and finished it like it was a single M&M. To really get the whole effect of a unique item such as this you really need to learn to savor it! I didn’t notice until days later that on the back of the bar I bought it even gives instructions on how to eat this bar. Here are their tips on enjoying it to it’s fullest potential:
“Breathe…engage your 5 senses, close your eyes and inhale deeply. Be in the present moment, notice the color of the chocolate, the glossy shine. Rub your thumb over the chocolate bar to release the aromas of smoked applewood bacon flirting with the deep milk chocolate. Snap off just a tiny piece and place it in your mouth, let the lust of salt and sweet coat your tongue.”
You may think this is crazy. I’m sure you’re picturing someone having a slightly erotic moment with the chocolate but this process is something that I do without even noticing I do it. You can’t just pop a specialty chocolate into your mouth and then go about your day willy-nilly! Enjoy the chocolate! Only enjoy pieces at a time and get the full effect and notice each note it gives you. At first bite, you only catch the flavor of chocolate. As you keep chewing and running your tongue over the chocolate you start to get that salty note of the alderwood smoked salt. The last flavor you get is . . . BACON! The sweet, salty, savory, smokey flavor is incredible when it all comes together at the end. If it just said “Sweet & Salty” would you give it a try without thinking? Then think of it as that, pretend there isn’t bacon, you will enjoy it I promise!
So who would think of such a crazy concept you may be wondering? On the back of each bar is does explain where this mad creation started. Here is a small blurb from that:
“I began experimenting with bacon + chocolate at the tender age of 6, while eating chocolate chip pancakes drenched in Aunt Jemima syrup, as children often do. Beside my chocolate laden pancakes lay 3 strips of sizzlin’ bacon, just barely touching a sweet pool of maple syrup. And then the magic–just a bite of the bacon was too salty and I yearned for the sweet kiss of chocolate and syrup, so I combined the two.”
The brand of chocolate I purchased is Vosges Haut-Chocolate Mo’s Bacon Bar. I found it at Whole Foods for $6.99 a bar. It comes in milk chocolate and dark chocolate, which I of course had to try both. I think both are amazing but i’m very fond of dark chocolate. I feel both bars offer up two different experiences. The milk chocolate would be your basic sweet & salty experience. The dark chocolate bar also offers that but also adds that bitter flavor note that I adore about dark chocolate.
The whole chocolate chip pancake mixed with bacon and maple syrup combination got me thinking about odd combinations we try as kids. Could one of these crazy concoctions be a delicious culinary creation waiting for a patent? The only creations that come to mind from my past are when I used to dip peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in Campbells Chicken Noodle Soup or when I dipped my grilled cheese in apple sauce. Unfortunately for me I don’t see a patent for either of those in my future. What are some of your childhood memories of culinary experimenting?