Many years ago, BAR came to South Africa to do their winter testing. They reckoned that the warm South African summer would be a good testing ground for the upcoming Formula 1 season where many races would be held in sweltering heat. As Dave is friendly with Alistair Gibson, who was the chief mechanic for BAR, I was able to have access to the pits during a day of testing. I spent time on the pit wall watching the proceedings and while I was doing so, Jacques Villeneuve came and joined me. We had a conversation and he took my peak off my head and signed it. This was not of much consequence to me, but it certainly was to the crew from the local TV station and the whole incident was filmed, and played in the morning news section the following day.
This memory led me to thinking about my Canadian maple syrup. I am really all about using regional products, but some items are just not produced here. Maple syrup is one of them. I can digest maple syrup and so I compromise a bit and use it – albeit sparingly as it is fairly expensive. I had an idea to make candied bacon after reading about it in my Miss Melicious recipe book. I decided to use her recipe as inspiration and used the maple syrup instead of sugar as I know fructose will probably burn. Once I had the maple syrup in mind, I traveled to North America, where pumpkin is used in desserts. I was given a bottle of pickled pumpkin by Nora from Delheim Wine Estate and I wanted to make sure I used them in something special, as well as something that could be sold in their restaurant. Muffins seemed like a good choice and they were really tasty.
Have you ever been on television?
- 4 rashers back bacon
- 15mls maple syrup
- 250mls flour
- 60mls sugar - I used fructose
- 10mls baking powder
- 1.25mls salt
- 250mls pickled pumpkin
- 250mls milk
- 1 egg
- 65g butter
- Preheat the oven to 200° Celsius
- Line a baking tray with a silpat or tin foil
- Place the bacon on the tray and brush on the maple syrup
- Reserve any left over syrup
- Bake the bacon for 15 minutes and chop finely once cool
- In the meantime, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt
- Mix in the pumpkin and the bacon
- Pour the milk into a bowl, add the egg, and whisk it in
- Melt the butter and add to the milk mixture and whisk in
- Add the remaining maple syrup
- Add the milk mixture to the flour mixture
- Use a fork to mix together until just combined
- Spoon the mixture into a prepared muffin tin
- Bake for 20 minutes
- Remove from the tin, and leave the muffins to cool on a wire rack
Click on the links for conversions and notes.
What I blogged:
- one year ago – coppa and courgette pasta with exotic mushrooms