Bacon & Peanut Butter Bonbons
18 ounces applewood smoked bacon, chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
100 grams/7 tablespoons heavy cream
700 grams/2 3/4 cups creamy peanut butter
500 grams/ 17.5 ounces milk chocolate, chopped, plus more tempered for coating

1. Preheat oven to 250°F. 2. Cook bacon in a large skillet set over low heat until all the fat has rendered and the pieces begin to crisp. Pour off grease into heatproof bowl; reserve. Spread out bacon on a Silpat-lined baking sheet and bake until crisp, about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven; place on paper towels to drain. Cool completely. 3. Return skillet to heat and deglaze pan with cream. Add cream to reserved bacon fat; reserve. 4. Place peanut butter in the top half of a double boiler or a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water; heat, stirring occasionally, until melted. Remove from heat; reserve. 5. Place chocolate in the top of a double boiler or another heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water and heat, stirring occasionally, until melted. Whisk into peanut butter; whisk in cream mixture. Finely chop cooled bacon into bits and fold into ganache. 6. Brush bonbon molds with tempered milk chocolate. Place ganache into a pastry bag set with round tip; pipe ganache into prepared molds and top with some tempered milk chocolate to close. Let set; unmold to serve. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.

Chef’s note: Cooked bacon should yield approximately 1/2 cup rendered fat.

Sautéed Mutsu Apples, Brioche French Toast & Bacon-Rice Streusel
(pictured above)

Brioche:
750 grams/5 1/2 cups bread flour
100 grams/1/2 cup granulated sugar
9 grams/3/4 tablespoon active dry yeast
10 grams/1 2/3 teaspoons kosher salt
375 grams/7 large eggs, lightly beaten
75 grams/5 tablespoons whole milk
375 grams/26 1/2 tablespoons unsalted European-style butter, such as Beurremont 83 percent, room temperature, cubed
Canola oil, for bowl and pans

1. Combine flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in a large bowl; reserve. 2. Mix eggs and milk in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment; add dry ingredients and mix on low speed until combined. Add butter in small batches, mixing until fully incorporated after each addition. Switch to the hook attachment and mix until the dough is smooth and elastic. Transfer dough to an oiled bowl and proof at room temperature for 1 hour. Cover bowl with oiled plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. 3. Punch down dough and shape into oiled loaf pans. Let proof 2 hours. 4. Heat oven to 350°F. 5. Bake bread until golden brown; remove from oven; place on wire racks; let cool; reserve.

Bacon-Rice Streusel:
120 grams/8 1/2 tablespoons (about 1 stick) unsalted butter
100 grams/1/2 cup rendered bacon fat
225 grams/1 3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
225 grams/1 cup light brown sugar, packed
50 grams/1 cup crisp rice cereal
100 grams/1 1/2 tablespoons crispy bacon bits
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon fennel pollen

1. Melt butter and fat in a small pan. Remove from heat; reserve. 2. Combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Pour butter mixture over dry ingredients and mix until combined. Cover bowl with plastic wrap; reserve in refrigerator. 3. Preheat oven to 325°F. 4. Remove streusel from refrigerator; spread evenly on a baking sheet and bake, stirring every five minutes, until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven; reserve.

Custard:
8 large eggs
185 grams/3/4 cups granulated sugar
500 milliliters/2 cups whole milk
500 milliliters/2 cups heavy cream
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 vanilla bean, seeds only

Whisk eggs and sugar in a large bowl; whisk in remaining ingredients; cover with plastic wrap; reserve in refrigerator.

Sautéed Apples:
8 Mutsu apples, peeled
2 lemons, juiced and strained
200 grams/16 tablespoons unsalted butter, clarified
150 grams/2/3 cup dark brown sugar, packed
3 grams/1 1/3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 grams/1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
60 grams/1 tablespoon Calvados
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
crème fraîche or crème fraîche ice cream (optional, for serving)

1. Carve out spheres from apples, using a melon baller, and place in a bowl; add juice; reserve. 2. Heat clarified butter in a large sauté pan set over high heat. Once butter has melted, remove pan from heat, and add apple mixture. Return pan to heat and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Add sugar, cinnamon, and salt and stir well. Remove from heat; add Calvados. Return pan to heat and flambé. Transfer mixture to a baking sheet; reserve (keep warm). 3. Cut brioche into 4-by-1-by-1-inch rectangles; place on baking sheet. Let stand until dried out, about 5 to 10 minutes. Place custard in shallow bowl and soak logs in custard. Heat unsalted butter in a sauté pan set over medium heat. Cook brioche in batches until brown on all sides; remove from heat. Cut each French toast into 4 cubes; divide cubes among each serving plate. Top with some apples and sprinkle with streusel. Serve with dollops of crème fraîche or scoops of crème fraîche ice cream, if desired.

Corn & Crème Fraîche Panna Cotta with Black Pepper Streusel & Candied Bacon

Panna cotta:
3 corn cobs
940 grams/3 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream
940 grams/3 3/4 cups plus 2 tablespoons whole milk
200 grams/1 cup granulated sugar
5 grams/3/4 teaspoon salt
570 grams/ 2 1/3 cups crème fraîche
17 grams silver sheet gelatin, bloomed in cold water

1. Bring cobs, cream, and milk to a boil in a pot. Remove from heat. Cover and let stand 3 hours. 2. Strain liquid into large bowl; discard cobs; place 6 1/3 cups liquid into clean pot; add sugar and salt. Bring to a boil; remove from heat. Stir in crème fraîche and gelatin; pour into desired serving glasses; cover with plastic wrap; refrigerate overnight.

Streusel:
250 grams/2 2/3 cups almond flour
250 grams/1 3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon bread flour
250 grams/1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
250 grams/18 tablespoons (about 2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into small cubes and chilled
1 to 2 grams/1/2 to 1 teaspoon black pepper, cracked

Place all ingredients in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat until a crumbly mixture forms, then sticks together forming a rough paste; break dough into small rough “rocks.” Place on a baking sheet; reserve in refrigerator.

Candied bacon:
450 grams/2 1/4 cups isomalt (see note below)
300 grams/15 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 pound bacon, cooked until crisp and finely chopped

1. Preheat oven to 300° F. 2. Combine isomalt and corn syrup in a saucepan set over high heat; cook until golden caramel forms. Remove from heat; pour onto a Silpat-lined baking sheet; cool until hard. 3. Break caramel into pieces; place in a processor and pulse to fine powder. Tap a layer of powder over desired stencil placed on a Silpat-lined baking sheet; sprinkle bacon over stencil and top with another layer of powder. Carefully remove stencil. Bake until the powder has turned back to caramel, about 45 seconds depending on the size of your shapes; remove from oven. Cool until shapes are hard. 4. Bake streusel, stirring every five minutes, until golden brown, about 15 minutes; remove from oven. Let cool. Sprinkle each panna cotta with some streusel and top with candied bacon before serving.
PastryScoop.com note: Isomalt can be purchased online at www. le-sanctuaire.com.