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chefpeon

Making Bacon Flavored Vodka

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thought i'd give this a try. 12 oz whole foods hickory-smoked bacon, rendered fat in WT 101 bourbon overnight, picked off fat, strained. i wasn't expecting much. in fact, with some of the comments above, i figured there wouldn't be much bacon flavor. but, wowee! porky and smokey.

in fact, waaayyy too porky and smokey. i got a lot of the "burnt" smoke flavors. when i take a sip and think "bacon," it's fairly remarkable -- "wow, bacon-y!" but, really, it's not too good. to make pallatible cocktails, i had to cut it 2:1 with another whiskey (WT 101 rye). and still, it's like "whoa... piggy charcoal."

so... will the flavors mellow a bit? did i just drink too soon. will this taste better in 2-3 weeks? did i do something wrong (the bacon i made was delicious and had none of the "burned" flavors that it gave to the whiskey)?

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What was your ratio of fat to booze? I think it takes less than an ounce of bacon fat to flavor a 750 of bourbon.


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What was your ratio of fat to booze?  I think it takes less than an ounce of bacon fat to flavor a 750 of bourbon.

hmm... i don't know... i was going by toby's (rough) recipe above. embarassingly, i didn't measure (damn silver fizz... and little italy... and...). it was probably more like 1.5-2 oz. i was actually surprised at how little liquid fat came from cooking a package of bacon. but perhaps i overdid it.

actually, i'm not so concerned with the intensity of flavor, but with the overwhelming charcoal in it. maybe i burned the fat. although, i kept pouring it off after every 3-4 slices and cooked over low heat. the bacon didn't burn.

so far, the best part of this experiment so far has been the bacon, date, and sea salt milk chocolate bars that my wife made with the left-over bacon. however, i think i can salvage the bacon-bourbon. i'll just have to use it in dashes and 1/4 ounces. hey, it'll last longer that way. and maybe it'll mellow with time. i'll report back in a couple weeks.

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Since I'm not an expert in this area, I'll ask those who are before I jump in with both feet. Will this fat washing technique work with nut butters (peanut butter, almond butter, pistachio paste, cashew butter, sesame paste, walnut paste, etc.)? I was considering infusing with toasted pecans and brown butter then I thought: what if I pureed the pecans and butter together into a paste? That lead to: I have some cashew butter in there, I wonder what that would do? And so on...


It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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Pecans do infuse into alcohol. But keep in mind that there is also a fair amount of tannin in pecans.


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Thanks. That's not eactly what I was curious about but it's still very useful information... I hadn't considered the role the tannins would play in the end result.


It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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The guy at Scofflaw's Den did pecans in rye whiskey - I've tried it and liked it better than the bacon-flavored Maker's Mark. Kinda looking forward to some fall cocktails with this one along the lines of the pecan pie cocktail noted in the blog.

Clickety here and scroll down to the end of the post for details.

Not sure what the advantage of doing a nut butter over the nut itself would be?


...wine can of their wits the wise beguile, make the sage frolic, and the serious smile. --Alexander Pope

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The guy at Scofflaw's Den did pecans in rye whiskey - I've tried it and liked it better than the bacon-flavored Maker's Mark.  Kinda looking forward to some fall cocktails with this one along the lines of the pecan pie cocktail noted in the blog.

Clickety here and scroll down to the end of the post for details.

Not sure what the advantage of doing a nut butter over the nut itself would be?

i haven't done it so i don't know for sure but fat might extract the flavor of only the nut and not pick up the tannins... which you could then integrate into the alcohol... alcohol alone may strip out too many negative components...


abstract expressionist beverage compounder

creator of acquired tastes

bostonapothecary.com

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Tri2Cook: Depending on the fat-solubility of pecan tannins, it's possible that if you wanted to avoid the tannins of pecans and make a "pecan and brown butter-infused bourbon" you could grind up the pecans and infuse them into warm clarified butter. Then you could fat-wash the clarified butter.


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The guy at Scofflaw's Den did pecans in rye whiskey - I've tried it and liked it better than the bacon-flavored Maker's Mark.  Kinda looking forward to some fall cocktails with this one along the lines of the pecan pie cocktail noted in the blog.

Clickety here and scroll down to the end of the post for details.

Not sure what the advantage of doing a nut butter over the nut itself would be?

i haven't done it so i don't know for sure but fat might extract the flavor of only the nut and not pick up the tannins... which you could then integrate into the alcohol... alcohol alone may strip out too many negative components...

Viva, thanks for the shout!

I haven't noticed any negative components coming from the pecans in any of the pecan-rye I've done. I'm thinking that after too long in the straight rye, a certain bitterness (more so than is commonly found in a pecan) may start to push through. Luckily that hasn't happened yet.

I have a few more ideas for the pecan-rye, one that I've really excited about because it reminds me of my Southern roots. Keep your eyes on the blog for that one.

Cheers!


My rule of life prescribed as an absolutely sacred rite smoking cigars and also the drinking of alcohol before, after and if need be during all meals and in the intervals between them. -Winston Churchill

Co-Author: The Scofflaw's Den

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Well, not bacon infused vodka...

PDT’s Bacon-Infused Old Fashioned

Start flipping your flapjacks: It’s maple-syrup season, and if that doesn’t put a spring in your step, consider the bacon-infused-bourbon-and-maple-syrup cocktail at the East Village gin joint PDT. Its inventor Don Lee uses robust Grade B syrup, which is made at the end of the season as winter yields to spring and tree sap deepens in color and flavor. It’s available now at Greenmarket’s Deep Mountain Maple stand, whose proprietors point out that although Grade B is used primarily for cooking, it’s been gaining in popularity among the table-syrup crowd—not to mention bacon-loving barflies.

Includes recipes for both the bacon infused bourbon and the maple/bacon/bourbon old-fashioned.


Edited by eje (log)

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Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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After being inspired by this thread I decided to try my own bacon infused bourbon, and have really been enjoying the results.

I used about 1/5 lb of bacon fried up then deglazed the pan with a little bourbon and put the whole thing into a mason jar for 24 hours. I then shook the jar and put it in the freezer for another 24 hours removed and strained with a cheese cloth. The results were very cloudy still so I ran the bourbon thru a coffee filter which pulled out all the sediment and cloudiness and left me with a perfectly normal looking bourbon.

Taste wise I was very happy, the bacon imparted a slightly smoky salty flavor to the bourbon that worked very well with it, I also tried the bacon infused old fashion above and it was wonderful.

As for type of bourbon I used Old Foresters which is very similar to Woodford in flavor, but not quite as smooth (hence why it is $10 a bottle less).


Jonathan

Quickly, bring me a beaker of wine, so that I may wet my mind and say something clever.

Aristophanes

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Sesame Oil unfortunately doesn't infuse very well. That was actually the first thing I tried when working on what eventually became the Silk Road (toasted sesame infused aquavite) cocktail from our last menu at PDT. The deep flavor of Sesame Oil just doesn't come through.

I have had a sesame flavored shochu from Japan. It was one of only about half a dozen shochus available in that particular restaurant so I assume it is a fairly mainstream product. I have no idea how it is made but I guess the process involves some kind of infusion.

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actually, i'm not so concerned with the intensity of flavor, but with the overwhelming charcoal in it.  maybe i burned the fat.  although, i kept pouring it off after every 3-4 slices and cooked over low heat.  the bacon didn't burn.  i'll just have to use it in dashes and 1/4 ounces.  hey, it'll last longer that way.  and maybe it'll mellow with time.  i'll report back in a couple weeks.

said i'd report back and i'm happy to say that the bourbon has mellowed considerably in the last month. it's still fairly intensly flavored, but the charcoalness has dropped back a lot and now is even pleasant. i'm still cutting it half and half with another whiskey when i use it, but it's pretty tasty now. probably 1/5-1/2 lb of bacon (depending on the type) would be plenty to flavor a 750ml bottle... not the whole pound i used.

my favorite drink i've made with it so far is a perfect manhatten, using vya extra dry. there's a brine-y-ness to the vya (along with anise notes) that goes spectacularly with the smokey bourbon.

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I have somewhat managed to miss this thread..i find it really interesting as i love to make all kinds of infusions, but fat wash i haven´t tried yet.

Something that stir my imagination is the thought of making Avocado infused Tequila, but i don`t know how that would be done as the Avocado flesh seems hard to work with. has anyone tried this?


www.amountainofcrushedice.com

Tiki drinks are deceptive..if you think you can gulp them down like milk you´re wrong.

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I would think that the easiest way to do an avacodo infused tequila would be thus: Cut the avocado into chunks and place in a wide mouthed mason jar. Pour a bottle of tequila over and let steep for 24 hours in the fridge. Strain out avocado, but don't press the solids (otherwise you would get mushy-boozy gloop in your tequila). Mental note: tequila infused avocado solids use in guacomole . . . If you need further straining, you could use a coffee filter.

I just figure since the avocado is such a fatty veggie to begin with it would kind of be like fat washing.

Cheers,

Marshall


My rule of life prescribed as an absolutely sacred rite smoking cigars and also the drinking of alcohol before, after and if need be during all meals and in the intervals between them. -Winston Churchill

Co-Author: The Scofflaw's Den

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Why not just put the avocado flesh into the blender with some of the tequila, liquify, infuse, chuck the whole works into the freezer, and filter off the alcohol as usual?


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Unless you're just using avocado oil, it's probably going to be a mucky, messy proposition that will probably turn a most unattractive color of brown in short order.

Best to think of fruits like avocado and mango as emulsions. Not the best subjects for use in infusions.

Also, avocado is a pretty subtle flavor. I dunno that it's going to show up much against the tequila at cocktail temp.

There's always Lucy Brennan's infamous Avocado Daiquiri if you have your heart set on an avocado flavored cocktail...

edit - changed "legendary" to "infamous". I believe a much more accurate descriptor.


Edited by eje (log)

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Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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Much less messy yes.. :rolleyes:

Half and half cannot be found in my country though..have no real clue what to sub with?

Here is only heavy cream.


www.amountainofcrushedice.com

Tiki drinks are deceptive..if you think you can gulp them down like milk you´re wrong.

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Oh wow, I forgot there was dairy in that.

To be honest, I'd leave it out.

Or just use all cream.

"Half and Half" is a vile manufactured and chemically stabilized substance theoretically composed of half cream and half milk.


Edited by eje (log)

---

Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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"Half and Half" is a vile manufactured and chemically stabilized substance theoretically composed of half cream and half milk.

Finally i get that one explained, there is no such thing where i live and I`ve seen it in many US recipes..so what`s the purpose for it really? to stabilize? or to sub for heavy cream?

We have one type of whipping cream here, so to me a whipping cream is a whipping cream..and its not chemical.


Edited by Tiare (log)

www.amountainofcrushedice.com

Tiki drinks are deceptive..if you think you can gulp them down like milk you´re wrong.

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Finally i get that one explained, there is no such thing where i live and I`ve seen it in many US recipes..so what`s the purpose for it really? to stabilize? or to sub for heavy cream?

We have one type of whipping cream here, so to me a whipping cream is a whipping cream..and its not chemical.

Well, it's not as bad as I made it sound. I was maybe exaggerating a bit. Half and Half is treated in some matter so that the fat globules in the cream do not separate out and float to the top. I think it is more of a physical process than chemical. Though, there are ultra stabilized versions of half and half that have a shelf life of decades rather than weeks. Those probably involve chemicals.

Anyway, I think pretty much any cocktail that calls for half and half can be made with cream. Can anyone think of a reason half and half would be necessary?

Maybe if it is subbing for half milk and half cream in a milk punch or something?


---

Erik Ellestad

If the ocean was whiskey and I was a duck...

Bernal Heights, SF, CA

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Finally i get that one explained, there is no such thing where i live and I`ve seen it in many US recipes..so what`s the purpose for it really? to stabilize? or to sub for heavy cream?

We have one type of whipping cream here, so to me a whipping cream is a whipping cream..and its not chemical.

Well, it's not as bad as I made it sound. I was maybe exaggerating a bit. Half and Half is treated in some matter so that the fat globules in the cream do not separate out and float to the top. I think it is more of a physical process than chemical. Though, there are ultra stabilized versions of half and half that have a shelf life of decades rather than weeks. Those probably involve chemicals.

Anyway, I think pretty much any cocktail that calls for half and half can be made with cream. Can anyone think of a reason half and half would be necessary?

Maybe if it is subbing for half milk and half cream in a milk punch or something?

I would say the fat content in your milk/cream matters a lot. Whole milk and 2% taste/feel a world apart to me. Same for half and half/whipping cream.

It seems "cream" has different definitions in different countries. According to wikipedia ( :smile: ), the US half and half can have the same fat content as the UK cream or half cream.

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