Georgia has its peaches, Maryland has its crabs, but Kentucky we have our bourbon. I'll take bourbon over peaches and crabs any day. Bourbon has taken on a life of its own. Yes, it's great for sipping, but it also adds a rich and complex flavor to delicious food.
My friend and fellow Kentucky gal Lindsay from Bourbon, Lipstick, and Stilettos and I are celebrating the month by sharing two bourbon recipes with you: a cocktail and an appetizer!
My mom has a signature appetizer that she serves at almost every family function---pepper jelly over cream cheese. Don't get me wrong mom's recipe is tasty...but a little bourbon never hurt anyone. This recipe has bourbon, maple syrup, and bacon. I'm pretty sure you won't meet a person that doesn't like one or all of these. You can spread this jam on bread, butter it on a biscuit, layer on cream cheese, or just finger it out of the jar. It's that good.
Recipe (adapted from here)
1 lb. bacon cut into 1 inch pieces
1 onion, sliced
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cub apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup brewed coffee
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup Kentucky bourbon
1-2 chipotle peppers (depending upon spice tolerance)
1/2 teaspoon cumin
Salt/pepper to taste
Cream Cheese block
crackers for serving
1. Cook bacon in sauce pan until it starts to crisp up. Set aside but retain 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat (just do it).
2. Saute the onions until tender, about 5-7 minutes.
3. Add the garlic until you start to smell the deliciousness.
4. Pour in the vinegar and stir to deglaze the pan.
5. Add in the coffee, brown sugar, maple syrup, bourbon, peppers, and cumin. Reduce the heat to simmer and let it simmer for 1-2 hours. Mine took around 1.5 hours to get to a nice syrupy consistency.
6. Pour into food processor and process for a couple seconds. You want to retain some of the texture of the bacon.
7. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Personally, I like it best served warm, so heat up for about a minute then pour over cream cheese block.
In more of a cocktail mood? Take it away, Lindsay...
I'm not much of a cocktail lover. In my opinion, bourbon should be enjoyed straight out of the bottle. Why ruin the already perfect taste? But some of you need to dilute it a bit. Here's a simple drink for you:
2 shots of bourbon
Juice of 4 lemons J
uice of 2 limes
teaspoons of powdered sugar
Mix all ingredients in mason jar and shake until sugar dissolves. Serve over ice. Recipe from here.
Want more? Check out my recipes for a Kentucky Mule and Hot Toddy!
Are you a bourbon lover? Will you be celebrating Bourbon Heritage Month with us?