Toasty bread, melty cheese and sweet and smoky maple bacon jam make this the best grilled cheese you’ll ever have!
Words cannot express the mind-blowing flavour of this sandwich.
But for you, I’ll give it my best shot.
I discovered that bacon jam was a real thing on Pinterest quite some time ago. I tucked it safely away on my Condiments board for a day when I would actually have time to spend making something as frivolous and unnecessary as bacon jam. Alas, Spring Break 2014 arrived.
I was wrong, though, about bacon jam being frivolous and unnecessary.
It is completely necessary.
And it’s jam. Made of bacon.
Bacon. Apple juice. Maple Syrup. Brown sugar. Onions. Garlic. Balsamic Vinegar.
Are you convinced yet?
This was one of those times when I made a single batch, and kicked myself afterwards, wondering how I was possibly going to live when this jar was done and I had to wait until I had time to make another.
I probably won’t have to wait too long, though. Because it takes a mere 45 minutes. Maybe that sounds like a long time to you. But that’s only because you haven’t made this jam. Made of bacon.
The bacon jam is a big enough deal to have its very own post up here on The Recipe Rebel, but I was trying to think of things I would put this jam on. Besides a spoon. Or a ladle. Or a shovel.
And I thought to myself, “I bet a bacon jam grilled cheese would be just about the best grilled cheese that was ever made”. And, friends, I was right.
I used a somewhat thin rye bread, because I didn’t want this sandwich to be all about the bread. I thought the sharp taste of cheddar would complement the sweet and smokiness perfectly, but I’m sure any cheese would be absolutely wonderful. Apparently, apple and cheddar are a winning combination.
You need this jam in your life. Trust me.
Serve with my quick 20 Minute Tomato Soup from Scratch.
Bacon Jam Grilled Cheese
Sweet, smoky, savory grilled cheese made complete with bacon jam made with apple juice, maple syrup and balsamic vinegar.
For the bacon jam
- 1 lb bacon, finely chopped
- 1medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 tsp minced garlic (about 4 cloves)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 tbsp brewed coffee (hot or cold, doesn't matter)
- 1/2 cup apple juice
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
For the grilled cheese
- Butter or margarine
- Sliced bread of choice
- Cheese of choice (I used cheddar)
For the bacon jam:
- In a medium pot, cook the bacon until nicely browned. Remove from pot, saving about 2 tbsp bacon fat. (Strain the rest off of the bacon)
- In remaining bacon fat, cook the onions over medium heat until translucent. Add garlic and cook about a minute until fragrant.
- Add bacon back to the pot. Add remaining ingredients.
- Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 30-40 minutes until thickened and syrupy (there shouldn't be a lot of liquid remaining).
- Optional: Puree some or all of the jam. I pureed about ½ cup in the Magic Bullet, just to give it more of a jam consistency.
- Serve warm or cold.
For the grilled cheese:
- Butter two slices of bread. Place one slice of bread, butter side down, into a pan preheated over medium heat. Top with cheese, bacon jam, and more cheese.
- Top with second slice of buttered bread, butter side up.
- Cook until golden brown. Flip and cook until golden brown.
Adapted from Martha Stewart.