It’s the first day of the Chinese (Lunar) New Year and here I would like to wish everyone Happy Year of the Horse! May this year be a successful one filled with joy, good health and prosperity! How are you celebrating your first day? I’ve been drooling at all the CNY feasts and checking out all the pretty outfits and cheongsam my friends have shared over their social media sites.
As for me, I’ve had a small dinner last night with Frank, and today I am spending the day baking at home. My hometown is over an hour flight away and this year I’m remaining in my third home (KL). Thus I don’t really have relatives to visit. I’m meeting up with a few friends tomorrow and didn’t want to go empty-handed, so I prepared something very special for them: Bacon Bakkwa!
Couple of years ago, a friend of mine brought over a pack of these for me, and it was love at first sight (the Bakkwa not my friend). I heard that people have to queue up to buy these and they are not cheap at all. So I decided to google and found a couple of useful recipes. Turns out it’s incredibly easy to make, and even easier than regular bakkwa! So off I went for an emergency groceries trip and these crazy deliciousness were born. The recipe I was referring to uses a few salty ingredients; I simplified it because Bacon itself should be salty enough. Feel free to adjust to your own taste though.
Bacon Bakkwa (adapted from I am What I Cook)
300g Streaky Bacon, sliced in half
1/4 Cup Castor Sugar
1/3 Cup Honey
1/2 Cup Water
1 tablespoon 5 Spice Powder
1 teaspoon Shao Xing Wine
1 teaspoon Soy Sauce
Rinse the bacon to get rid of the excess water from the packaging if any, pat dry and set aside.
Mix sugar, honey, water and microwave for a minute to dissolve sugar, then mix in the 5 spice powder and soy sauce.
Coat bacon slices with marinade, cover and leave in fridge overnight (or 12 hours)
Preheat Oven to 200C and bake the bacon slices in batches for about 10 minutes or until caramelized. Drain off the fat, let cool completely and store in airtight container for up to 2 weeks (That’s if you can control yourself not to consume everything at once).
I think you should be able to make this a little more Paleo friendly by omitting sugar and soy sauce, just use more honey or maple syrup. I shall experiment more with these soon!
Of course, I had a small piece to taste and they were just as good as the one I was given last time, maybe even better! Chewy, sweet, savoury, smoky, addictive! I have no doubt they will go empty in minutes. Do try this if you want to impress your guests!