Wednesday 6 November 2013


To some people, bacon is a powerful word. It elicits a strong response when it is heard. It evokes a strong emotion when it is said, pausing briefly, making a mental drumroll, before letting the word cascade with a heavy breath.

Bacon is both heavenly and sinful. One is torn between abstaining and indulging. The middle road is a path untrodden because once tasted, there can never be too much.

When I was young, my favourite breakfast was bacon, sprinkled with sugar and stuffed in pan de sal (Filipino breakfast rolls), with a side of eggs fried in bacon fat; an artery busting combo that's too good to resist. 

To cut to the chase, I made a sweet bacon filling that almost tasted like Chinese ham and stuffed it right into the dough before baking. We all know what that does to the dough, right? That changes the taste of the bread, giving it a bacon and maple whiff and a taste that says Christmas came early and is here to stay if you want it to. Oh so good! You might be tempted to overfill the buns (do so if you wish) but the bread actually tastes so good too that you woudn't want to mask it completely.

Yield: 24 pcs.

Ingredients for the bread rolls:

1 quantity of pan de sal dough (recipe here)
1 c. of fine dry breadcrumbs

Ingredients for the filling:

600 gms. of streaky bacon (I used unsmoked), cut into lardons
1/2 c. maple syrup 
2 tsps. ground cinnamon


Heat up a frying pan. When hot, add the bacon lardons and dry fry until it renders fat and begins to brown. Don't let it crisp. 

Add the maple syrup and cinnamon. Stir for about 3 minutes until all the flavours combine and the syrup thickens slightly.

Transfer to a plate, leave to cool then refrigerate.

The bacon fat will separate and congeal after chilling. Stir very well so that the whole mixture thickens.

Divide the dough into 24 pieces (about 50 gms. each).

Pinch the sides of the dough to form cup shapes (the bottom will be thicker than the sides). Scoop a tablespoonful of filling into the middle, pinch the sides together repeatedly until a well sealed ball is formed. 

Roll in the crumbs. Arrange on baking sheets and leave to rise until double in size.

Preheat the oven to 350° F/ 180° C while proving the dough.

Bake for 15-20 minutes until brown.

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