In the Kitchen: Bundled Beans, Pecan Truffles
Bacon Wrapped Green Bean Bundles
1 lb. green beans with the ends snapped off (buy or pick about 1 1/2 pounds so you’ll have 1 lb. after the beans’ ends have been snapped)
8 slices lean, regularly sliced bacon
3 Tbsp. real butter (no substitutions!)
1 Tbsp. rice vinegar
1 Tbsp. white sugar
1 Tbsp. minced red onion
1 clove minced garlic
1/4 tsp. Kosher salt
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil.
If you’re using fresh green beans, wash and snap the ends off. Discard any sickly looking, overly skinny, limp, or yucky-looking beans. Super-scientific, right?
When the water is boiling, briefly boil (blanch) the beans for 2-3 minutes or until you start hearing a popping noise and the beans have turned bright green. Quickly drain and rinse in cold water until the beans have cooled.
If you’re planning on completing the beans immediately, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
On a cookie sheet, divide the green beans evenly into 8 piles. Carefully bundle each pile of beans with one slice of bacon and return to the baking sheet. This step can be done up to a day ahead of time.
When the oven is ready, place the pan in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes or until the bacon is crisp and sizzling. While the bundles are in the oven, melt the butter over medium-high heat in a small saucepan. When the butter is bubbly, add in the onions and garlic and saute for 2-3 minutes or until the onions are softened and fragrant. Reduce heat to low and add in vinegar, sugar, and salt. Remove from heat and set aside.
When ready to serve, place bean bundles on a serving platter and drizzle with sauce. Serve immediately.
Pecan Pie Truffles
- 2 1/2 cup Fishers pecans
- 1 cup vanilla wafer cookies
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1/3 cup Karo light corn syrup
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 8oz vanilla candy coating
- 8oz chocolate candy coating
- 40 pecan halves
- In a food processor, pulse pecans and cookies until fine crumbs. Pour into a large bowl. Add brown sugar, corn syrup and vanilla extract. Mix with a spoon until fully combined.
- Using a one tablespoon scoop, drop scoops onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet (that is freezer safe). Once all scoops have been formed, roll each scoop into a nice smooth ball with your hands. Transfer baking sheet to freezer for about 30 minutes.
- When ready, melt vanilla and chocolate candy coating in separate bowls according to package directions.
- Using a toothpick, dip cold truffle into either vanilla or chocolate. Tap on side of bowl to remove excess. Place back on parchment paper, remove toothpick and top with a pecan halve (to cover the toothpick hole). Repeat until all truffles are dipped.
- I like to work in two stages. It's easier if the truffles remain very cold. So I do half of them while the other half is still in the freezer. Then I work on the second half.
- Store truffles in an air tight container for up to 10 days.
Maple Cranberry Bourbon Martini
- 4 ounces unsweetened Cranberry Juice
- 1 ounce Bourbon Maple Syrup
- 2 ounces Bourbon
- fresh Cranberries
Add ice to a martini shaker. Add cranberry juice, bourbon maple syrup and bourbon. Shake well. Pour through strainer into chilled martini glasses. Serve with a fresh cranberry skewer & float some cranberries on the top.
Wednesday, April 23 2014, 10:23 AM CDT