Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies

Consider this one novelty cookie with a “don’t tell them/secret” ingredient.  But if you want to give away the secret ingredient, then by all means lightly press some bacon bits onto the unbaked cookie dough.   Tell the kids to stay away from the kitchen while you’re baking candied bacon as they are yummy and irresistible.  Makes 2 dozens cookies.

Candied Bacon:
8 to 10 strips of bacon
1/4 cup brown sugar for sprinkling

Chocolate Chip Cookies:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) margarine
1 tablespoon bacon grease
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 eggs, slightly beaten
2 cups semisweet chocolate morsels, divided
fleur de sel for sprinkling (optional)

Make the candied bacon:  Preheat oven to 400 F.  Line a large baking tray with aluminum foil.  Place a wire rack and lay bacon strips flat on the rack.  Sprinkle brown sugar on bacon strips.  Bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven and collect the bacon grease to a small bowl and refrigerate to solidify.    Chop bacon into small pieces.

Make the chocolate cookie dough:  Combine together flour, soda, baking powder, and salt.  Cream butter, bacon grease, sugars and vanilla in a large bowl.  Add eggs, one at a time.  Gradually add the flour mixture.  Stir in 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips and about 3/4 of the bacon pieces.  You may want to chill this for about 30 minutes before scooping/forming into cookie balls.

Preheat oven to 350 F.   Line 2 large baking trays with parchment paper.  Drop cookie dough using ice cream scooper onto prepared pans, about 2 inches apart.   Flatten slightly the cookie balls using a floured bottom of a drinking glass tumbler and lightly press reserved 1/2 cup chocolate chips and 1/4 of the bacon bits on top.   (You may sprinkle some fleur de sel on top too!) Bake 12 to 14 minutes or until edges are crisp but center are still a bit soft.  Let stand 2 minutes on cookie sheet before removing and cooling completely on wire racks.



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