You know how it is.
Casually flicking through a new cookbook, until something eye-catching grabs your attention.
It was Heartland, The Cookbook, and I was beguiled by visions of red barns adorning rolling green fields and doe-eyed bovines with long, frilly lashes and soulful brown peepers.
Flick. Flick. Flick.
Caught from the corner of an eye.
Two words: Bacon Vodka.
And with that, I knew. I had to.
Because, just like Everest, there it is, and so I did.
Modified from Heartland, The Cookbook, by Judith Fertig.
I have taken the liberty of adding zing with pepper.
2 slices thick-cut, smoked bacon - I used applewood smoked, no-nitrate cured.
1 1/2 cups of vodka
1 tablespoon whole peppercorn.*
*I used whole Tellicherry Indian black peppercorn from Penzys Spices, which are giant firey marbles of heat and flavor.
I used a 12 ounce canning jar. A 12 ounce canning jar is 1 1/2 cups. Find a bigger jar!
Cut two slabs of bacon in half, so they will fit, upright, into your jar with room to put on the lid.
Fry the bacon until cooked but not burned. Fry a few extra skices and have some as a snack, because the smell of frying bacon will drive you mad with want.
Remove the bacon, and put it on a paper towel to blot off some of the grease.
While it is still warm, put bacon into the jar with the whole peppercorn and the vodka, and cover with a lid.
Let it steep in the fridge for 2 or 3 days, shaking every so often.
Remove and discard the bacon and peppercorn, and skim off any stray fat, which should be solidified.
Store in the fridge, and use in place of regular vodka for Bloody Marys.
I'll present several other cunning uses here as well, in upcoming days.