There are too many great restaurants in New Orleans to count. I am very fortunate to live in a city where I can eat at a new restaurant every week and still feel like I will never get to them all. The other week I had the chance to revisit Green Goddess - an eclectic restaurant serving fun versions of classics New Orleans fare. I ate the Duck and Grits with Red Wine Reduction which was savory and rich and so good. After hearing about it for a long time, I finally had a chance to order the famous Bacon Sundae for dessert. Here is how the menu reads:
Pecan praline ice cream with a creamy bacon caramel sauce carrying a bit of both Pink Himalayan & Black Lava Salts, & micro-planed Nueske’s Applewood Bacon, layered with whipped cream, of course!
After tasting this gorgeous sundae with its creamy ice cream, salty sauce, and crispy bacon, I knew that I had to try to re-create it. The pecan praline ice cream base is delicious by itself, but once it is topped with the other ingredients it becomes a sinful piece of culinary art. Enjoy!
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
1 cup pecans, chopped
2 cups whole milk
1 ¼ cups heavy cream
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 ½ oz. cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup cane sugar
1/8 cup light corn syrup
7/8 tsp kosher salt, divided
½ tsp vanilla
In a heavy skillet, over medium heat, melt the butter. Add pecans and sauté, until the pecans begin to brown. Stir in 1/8 tsp salt and remove from heat. Set aside to cool.
Fill a large bowl with ice water. In a small bowl, mix 2 Tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch. In another large bowl, whisk the cream cheese until smooth.
Prepare and measure all other ingredients before beginning next step (melting sugar). Prepare milk mixture (combine remaining milk and heavy cream), measure corn syrup. Set aside.
Place sugar in a large saucepan. As the sugar begins to melt, gently push up the sides and stir to encourage it to melt evenly. Once sugar is completely melted, add ½ tsp of salt. Continue stirring until the melted sugar is a caramel color and just starts to smoke, then remove from heat and carefully add milk mixture. Be careful – milk will bubble and spit when added to hot sugar; Sugar will harden but when returned to heat will melt again. Return to heat and add corn syrup.
Bring the milk-sugar mixture to a boil and cook over moderate heat until the sugar dissolves, 4 minutes. Off the heat, gradually whisk in the cornstarch mixture. Return to a boil and cook over moderately high heat until the mixture is slightly thickened (draw a line on a spoon), about 1 minute.
Gradually whisk the hot milk mixture into the cream cheese until smooth. Whisk in ¼ tsp salt. Set the bowl in the ice water bath and let stand, stirring occasionally, until cold, about 20 minutes. Add vanilla.
Strain the ice cream base into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. After the ice cream starts to stiffen, add the pecans, then continue freezing until the ice cream is ready. Pack the ice cream into a plastic container. Press a sheet of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the ice cream and close with an airtight lid. Freeze until firm, about 4 hours.
Caramel Bacon Sauce
Adapted recipe from The Perfect Scoop
2 Tablespoons bacon fat
1 cup (200 g sugar)
1 1/4 cups (310 ml) heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Melt bacon fat is a large, deep saucepan. Stir in the sugar and cook, stirring frequently, until the sugar is a deep golden brown and starts to smoke.
Remove from heat and immediately whisk in half of the cream until smooth. Be careful – milk will bubble and spit when added to hot sugar. Stir in the remaining cream, then stir in salt and vanilla. If there are any lumps in the caramel, whisk the sauce gently over low heat until dissolved. Serve on sundae (below) or store in the refridgerator for up to 2 weeks.
2 scoops pecan praline ice cream
3 to 4 Tablespoons caramel bacon sauce
One slice of bacon, cooked until crispy, chopped into small pieces
Pinch of pink Himalayan salt
Pinch of black lava salt
Choose your favorite ice cream dish and add 2 scoops of pecan praline ice cream to the dish (or more if you want). Drizzle about 1 to 2 Tablespoons of caramel bacon sauce over top of the scoops. Top with whipped cream. Drizzle more caramel bacon sauce on top of the whipped cream (not too much or the whipped cream will deflate). Scatter bacon pieces on top. Sprinkle with salts. Eat with your favorite spoon and ENJOY!