Candied bacon sticks

Candied bacon sticks (Suzanne Kreiter/Globe Staff)
December 29, 2010

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Makes about 35

When you buy a box of breadsticks (Alessi is a good brand for this), there might be a few or many broken pieces, so buy two. Use the large pieces and cut the bacon to fit, or overlap two half-sticks in the center and wrap a whole slice of bacon around them. Caterer Sue Zahner recommends using center-cut bacon, which is fairly lean with shorter strips. If one or both ends of the bacon strips are all fat, cut off some of the excess.

Vegetable oil (for the pan)
1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds thinly sliced bacon
2 boxes (3 ounces each) thin breadsticks, such as Alessi
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1. Set the oven at 325 degrees. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil. Brush lightly with oil.

2. Starting about 1 inch from one end of a breadstick, wrap the bacon around the stick. (Don’t worry about wrapping it snugly because as the bacon cooks it will tighten around the stick.) Leave at least 1 inch uncovered at both ends. For larger, broken sticks, cut the bacon to fit. Place the wrapped sticks in the pan, fitting them close together as needed.

3. In a bowl, combine the dark and light brown sugars. Sprinkle the mixture all over the bacon sticks. Bake for 55 to 65 minutes or until the bacon is cooked through and nicely browned. Carefully spoon off the fat from the pan. Cool the sticks for a few minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack or a sheet of parchment paper to cool completely. If you wait too long to remove the sticks from the pan, the sugar will harden and stick to the pan. The sticks can be made up to one day ahead; store at room temperature or refrigerate. Lisa Zwirn. Adapted from Tastings Caterers