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Bacon Caramel Corn
“Before I started this job, I drove across the country in search of classic American comfort food. That’s where a lot of my inspiration comes from. When I approach a dish I think, What’s the simplest, best way to make this well, because I want to get back to the roots food that people grew up with, rather than serve something that’s overly messed with. Popcorn is a universal comfort food. It’s what you think of when you’re cuddling up in a blanket and watching a movie. When you add bacon, caramel, and chipotle peppers, you get salty, sweet, and spicy, which work so well together. It’s a great cocktail companion, too.”
Who Jesse Hansen, executive sous-chef
Where Proof, at the Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale Troon North
1 cup chopped cooked bacon
1½ cups popcorn kernels
¼ of a 7-ounce can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
2⅔ cups light brown sugar
¾ cup butter
½ cup light corn syrup
¼ cup honey
1. Place cooked bacon in the freezer. Pop kernels over the stove or in an air popper, then set aside. Puree peppers in a food processor, then set aside. Bring brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, and honey to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Remove from stove.
2. Stir in chilled bacon and pureed peppers. In a large bowl, toss popcorn in the sauce, then spread over two nonstick baking sheets.
3. Bake at 290 degrees for about an hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Remove from pans immediately.
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