Bacon. I mean, it’s an amazing food, right? When I was in college, my best friend would always make me request extra bacon and then give it to her in the cafeteria. It is a testament to my love for her, that I actually let her have it.
It was only a few years ago that I discovered bacon jam. It was a terrific restaurant called Carson’s Kitchen in downtown Las Vegas, It was It’s the last restaurant opened by legendary Las Vegas chef Kerry Simon before he passed away in 2015. The place is down on Carson Street (hence the name) in an old downtown building that has been revitalized. It is unassuming and partially filled with community tables. Their bacon jam is amazing.
I had always thought of bacon jam as something I had to wait to go out to eat to have. Well, the pandemic has changed many things, and this is one of them.
Cook the bacon jam first. It takes a bit more time than the burgers. You can even make it ahead of time and just reheat it slightly to use on the burgers.
My bacon jam recipe is from Mom’s Dinner
I didn’t have raisins, so I used dried cranberries, which I really liked, especially pairing it with the wine. This recipe does call for a ½ lb of bacon and you end up with about ½ cup of jam, but trust me it is worth it.
Crisp up the bacon and reserve the bacon grease. Cook the onion and garlic in some of that grease. Chop the bacon up and add it and the brown sugar to the onions. Cook a little then add the cranberries, some Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar, and a little bit of water, and cook this until it’s syrupy. This will top 6 burgers and will keep in the fridge for about a week (if you can keep from eating it all!)
What you will need
- 1/2 lb. bacon
- 1 cup of yellow onion, chopped very fine
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons reserved bacon grease
- 2 tbs cup brown sugar
- 1 tbs dried cranberries
- 1 1/2 tsp Worcestershire
- 1 1/2 tbs balsamic vinegar
- 3 tbs water
- Slice the bacon into 1-inch pieces
- Cook until crisp
- Drain reserving the bacon grease and set aside to cool
- Add 1 1/2 tbs of the reserved grease back to the pan and add your onions and garlic.
- Cook over low heat for about 15 minutes, until the onions are soft and translucent.
- While that’s cooking do a rough chop on your bacon to get it into small pieces.
- Add the bacon and brown sugar to the onion mixture.
- Stir and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add the cranberries, Worcestershire, balsamic, and water
- Simmer over medium-low heat for 6-8 minutes. It will thicken and get syrupy.
You can keep this in the refrigerator for up to a week and reheat it on the stove or in the microwave, just adding a bit of water.
We served ours on a burger with blue cheese and mushrooms with a side of cheddar cheese corn chips and the L’Ecole No. 41 2017 Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. Cheddar cheese corn chips are genius with Cabernet!
L’Ecole No. 41 2017 Columbia Valley Cabernet Sauvignon
This wine comes from Washington’s largest AVA the Columbia Valley AVA. It covers a full 1/3 of the landmass of Washington. It is sourced from vineyards across this AVA that L’Ecole No. 41 has built a relationship with over the years.
You’ll find a blend of fruit from a few vineyards in here: Candy Mountain, Estate Seven Hills, Alder Ridge, Klipsun, Summit View, Bacchus & Dionysus, Pepper Bridge, Stone Tree, Loess, Yellow Jacket, Estate Ferguson & Stone Valley
100% Cabernet Sauvignon – 5,600 cases produced – $29.00 SRP
This was great with the wine. It would also pair amazingly with a Syrah or Shiraz!
*We received this wine as a media sample. No other compensation was received. All opinions are our own.
This bacon jam is based on a recipe from Mom's Dinner. We substituted dried cranberries for the raisins, which brings a bigger fruit note to the dish and paired great with the Cabernet Sauvignon we chose.
Bacon jam is life-changing. How did I ever live without this stuff! You can serve it with crackers or bread. The other night we topped a pizza with some. Quite honestly, had I been home alone, I would have made this and sat on the couch and eaten the whole bowl with a spoon.
- • 1/2 lb. bacon
- • 1 cup yellow onion, chopped
- • 1 garlic cloves, minced
- • 1 1/2 tbs reserved bacon grease
- • 2 tbs brown sugar
- • 1 tbs dried cranberries
- • 1 1/2 tsp Worcestershire
- • 1 1/2 tbs balsamic vinegar
- • 3 tbs water
1. Slice the bacon into 1-inch chunks, cook in a large skillet until crispy. Reserve the grease in a bowl - set aside.
Drain bacon and set aside.
2. Chop the onions very fine and mince the garlic
3. To the skillet add the onions, 3 tbs bacon grease, and garlic. Sauté over low heat until the onions are soft and translucent, about 15 minutes.
4. Rough chop the bacon.
5. Add bacon and brown sugar to the onions, stir and cook for 2 minutes.
6. Add cranberries, Worcestershire, balsamic, and water to the bacon mixture. Simmer over medium-low heat for 5-8 minutes. The mixture will thicken and get syrupy.
7. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container (like a jar) in the fridge for 5-7 days.
To reheat it add just a touch of water and heat over medium heat, or cover the dish with a damp paper towel and pop it in the microwave for 30 seconds.
Amount Per Serving Calories 247Total Fat 17gSaturated Fat 6gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 10gCholesterol 40mgSodium 659mgCarbohydrates 11gFiber 1gSugar 7gProtein 13g
Nutrition information isn’t always accurate.
Robin Renken is a wine writer and Certified Specialist of Wine. She and her husband Michael travel to wine regions interviewing vineyard owners and winemakers and learning the stories behind the glass.
When not traveling they indulge in cooking and pairing wines with food at home in Las Vegas.