Brown Butter Bacon Ice Cream

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Bacon and ice cream aren’t normally associated with each other, but just like maple doughnuts topped with bacon bits, this unlikely combination of sweet and salty will definitely please your palate. We were inspired to make this indulgent dessert after devouring the bourbon fudge brownie topped with housemade brown butter bacon ice cream at Carson Kitchen in Downtown Las Vegas.

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The taste and texture of the candied bacon complements the creamy base perfectly. It brings the sweetness while the brown butter brings the salty, nutty flavor. I would advise making a few extra pieces of bacon because most likely they will not all make it to the ice cream. A few slices may or may not have been eaten before mixing the ingredients….

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Brown Butter Ice Cream with Candied Bacon

Ingredients

For the candied bacon:

  • 6 or 7 strips of bacon
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar

For the ice cream custard:

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 3/4 cups Half & Half
  • 5 egg yolks
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp. rum

Directions

  1. To make the candied bacon, preheat oven to 350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil. Top with a cooling rack and spray with coking spray. Press brown sugar onto both sides of the bacon and lay on prepared rack. Cook for 8 minutes, then flip and cook for an additional 8-12 minutes, until the bacon is crisp and the brown sugar is bubbly. Let cool.
  2. For the ice cream custard, melt butter in a small skillet over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until butter is a dark amber color and has a nutty smell (about 6 minutes). Pour through a fine strainer into a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. Bring Half & Half to a simmer in a large saucepan, stirring occasionally.
  4. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together egg yolks, sugars and salt, until thickened and well blended. Whisk in brown butter until combined. Gradually add warm Half & Half to egg mixture, whisking constantly to prevent the eggs from cooking. Once tempered, return to saucepan and add the vanilla and rum. Stir over medium heat until mixture reaches 180F and is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Strain into a large bowl. Cover with cling wrap, pressing it down directly on top of the custard to prevent a film from forming. Let cool in refrigerator for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  5. Once the custard is completely cool, place in ice cream machine and follow manufacturer’s directions. Add candied bacon bits when there are about 5 minutes left.
  6. Let it harden in the freezer or serve immediately. It goes great with fresh brownies!
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Hot Pink and Happy

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A simple, hot pink piece is an easy way to brighten up any outfit. I love this chiffon tee because of its versatility it can be dressed up with a black skirt and heels or worn casually with denim and flats. For a laid back look, I paired it with my go-to jeans, patterned flats and a geometric statement necklace.

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Hot pink is a fun color to play with because it can be adapted to fit a variety of personal styles. Pairing this top with leather leggings and strappy stilettos creates a sleek, sexy look with some edge. On the other side of the spectrum, wearing this hue with a stylish skater skirt and delicate sandals yields a more feminine ensemble. No matter what your clothing personality is, there is always room for this bright color in your closet!

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Jeans: Citizens of Humanity

Leopard Flats: Target

Hot Pink Tee: BP Nordstrom (Lush)

Necklace: BP Nordstrom

Bourbon Brownies

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After indulging in the brown butter bacon ice cream served with a bourbon fudge brownie at Carson Kitchen, Rob and I attempted to recreate this decadent dessert. Step one: the brownie! I’m not much of a bourbon fan, but mixed with chocolate it is delicious! The flavor is subtle and really enhances the cocoa. I like to serve these sweet treats while they are still warm and top them with ice cream (brown butter bacon recipe coming soon). Fresh brownies with melting ice cream—what’s not to love?

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Bourbon Brownies

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup bourbon
  • 1/4 cup bittersweet chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 large eggs

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly coat 9″ x 9″ baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan, bring the bourbon to a boil. Remove from heat and add chocolate chips, stirring until smooth.
  3. In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine sugar and butter, mixing on medium speed until well combined. Beat in the eggs and vanilla until fully incorporated.
  4. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa, powder and salt. Gradually add to butter mixture, beating at low speed just until combined.
  5. Spread into prepared baking pan and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until it passes the toothpick test. Cool in pan on wire rack.

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Watermelon Strawberry Sangria

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Did you know that today is National Watermelon Day? Well, it is and the timing couldn’t be more perfect because this cool, healthy fruit is a summer staple. I’ve used it for several recipes this season, including a watermelon and feta salad, watermelon margaritas and watermelon ice cubes to go with homemade lemonade.

After making a batch of refreshing margaritas, I decided to use the rest of the flavorful fruit to make some thirst-quenching sangria. This simple recipe yields four to six servings and is perfect for a backyard barbecue. Summer and sangria definitely go together like peanut butter and jelly. Enjoy!

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Friday Five

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Wahoo it’s almost the weekend! I think I actually enjoy Friday more than the weekend itself because you are in a relaxed, excited mindset knowing that you have two days of freedom ahead of you. Plus, casual Friday dress codes allow for some flexibility with your fashion decisions. I love being able to wear jeans instead of a skirt or dress pants! To start off a fun-filled weekend, I decided to share five of my favorite photos from the week.

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Carson Kitchen

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For Rob’s birthday in March, I told him I would buy tickets for a concert at Brooklyn Bowl because I think he would really enjoy this new venue at The LINQ complete with food, drinks and bowling. The concert space reminds me of the Showbox in Seattle, which we saw some fun shows at, so I thought it was a great gift! However, we haven’t been able to see any of the bands we like because of his weird shift work schedule, so we did a little birthday redo. He wanted to see the Book of Mormon, so I bought him tickets to that and surprised him with dinner before the show. Carson Kitchen is a new restaurant in Downtown Las Vegas and had only been open for a day or two when we dined. Everything was on point and is now one of our favorite Vegas restaurants.

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We started with the baked brie and bacon jam, which is served alongside a toasted baguette. The flavor was amazing and definitely unique! We also shared the veal meatballs in a sherry foie gras cream sauce. These sharable plates were delicious and something you can’t find anywhere else.

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I ordered the cocoa-espresso NY strip steak with red wine demi  since I can’t say no to chocolate or espresso. Rob and I always play the “who ordered best” game and I definitely won this round. His swordfish was good, too, but it’s hard to beat this indulgent steak.

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Throughout the meal I couldn’t stop thinking about the bourbon brownie I had seen on the dessert menu. It is served with brown butter bacon ice cream, which was similar to a salted caramel flavor. The candied bacon added a little crunch and created that sweet and salty flavor that I love! We will definitely try making this with our own ice cream machine soon!

Since this first visit, I have been back for a girls’ night where we enjoyed the tempura green beans with pepper jelly cream cheese and baked truffle mac & cheese. Of course I also had to try the glazed donut bread pudding, which is made with doughnuts from the neighboring O Face Doughnuts. It was also amazing. The restaurant itself has a casual, neighborhood vibe that is enhanced with a rooftop deck adorned with festive strings of lights making it a great Downtown destination.

 

Links and Leather

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One of my favorite finds at Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale is this mixed metal necklace. I’m a sucker for statement necklaces and loved the edgy, yet feminine look of this stand-out accessory. The pastel stones soften the heavy-metal look of the chain links, creating a modern necklace that can instantly glam up an outfit.

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I wanted the mixed-media necklace to be the focus of my ensemble, so I paired it with a simple white tee. Staying with the edgy look, I finished the outfit with a leather skirt and lace-up booties. It’s a great feeling when you piece together an outfit that makes you feel confident and that is exactly what this outfit did for me.

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