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LEEKED! The Bacon Edition

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The KFC Double Down
  • Courtesy KFC
  • The KFC Double Down
*All the rage in food news this week is KFC’s new Double Down, which is a bacon and cheese sandwich. Yawn, right? Nope — the sandwich is enveloped by two fat, fried chicken patties instead of a bun. Thing looks like a hash brown eating a BLT.

The sandwich “plopped” Monday at most KFCs. "Getcha some!" like Paula Deen would say, and she has expressed excitement over the new culinary … something.

*Meanwhile, former Euphoria mixologist Zach Wilks has given me his bacon-infused bourbon recipe, which he’ll use to make something like his ol' Hamhattans when he opens his new pre-prohibition cocktail bar, Ball & Biscuit, with Trevor Belden in June on Mass Ave. Former Euphoria executive chef Brad Gates will provide small, French-inspired plates, and Wilks said the place will feature boutique wines and local craft beer, besides some from specific U.S. regions.

But the real focus will be his hand-crafted cocktails, like the Sazerac, Old Fashioned, and Gin Fizzes he wowed me with at his previous post.

Without further ado, the Hamhattan-come-“Bacon Infused Bourbon Manhattan” recipe, which Wilks sent to me via e-mail:

The Bacon Infused Bourbon Manhattan

Bacon-infused Kentucky Vintage whiskey (about 2 oz.), sweet vermouth (1/2 oz.), and a dash of blood orange bitters.

“That’s it?” I replied. Then he gave me the goods on infusing your whiskey:

Cook one pound of your favorite bacon — I prefer thick-cut applewood smoked bacon for this — and make a delicious BLT with the bacon [ed. note: NOT ALL OF IT, save some for a garnish]. This gives the bacon fat time enough to cool, so you can pour it into one bottle of Kentucky Vintage whiskey. Let the whiskey fat mixture sit in a warm place for 12 hours, and then freeze. All of the fat will freeze on top of the whiskey and can easily be removed with a spoon. All that's left is to strain through a cheese cloth until clear, and enjoy.

*Feel like eating some bacon now? Goose the Market has jowl bacon, the cheek-sourced bacon used to make Guanciale. Do yourself a favor: Eat it in Italian recipes, but don’t look at pictures of it being aged.

If you fry it up like you would regular bacon, you have a rich, cheap soul food treat. Eat it with eggs, put it in your beans to flavor them, or munch it alone.

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