Cranberry Bacon Jam Crostini
1 pound thick cut bacon
2 cups large yellow onions, sliced
1 teaspoon Feast Herbs d’ provence salt
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 pinch cayenne pepper
1/2 cup Cranberry Juice
1/2 cup dried cranberries
Salt and pepper to taste
Line a baking sheet with foil and top it with an oven safe rack if you have one. If not, you can cook the bacon right on the foil. Lay bacon pieces in a single layer on the rack (or on the foil), and place the baking sheet in the oven. Turn the oven on to 400°F and cook for 20-30 minutes until desired crispiness. You’ll want the bacon pretty crispy for the bacon jam.
When the bacon is cooked to your liking, carefully remove the baking sheet from the oven and transfer the bacon to a paper-towel lined plate to drain. Pat dry with a paper-towel to remove the bacon fat. Reserve the bacon fat left in the baking sheet.
Heat 2 tablespoons bacon fat over medium heat in a skillet. Add the onions and stir. Allow the onions to cook for about 10 minutes.
While the onions are cooking, chop the bacon and set aside. After about 10 minutes, you’ll notice the onions are starting to turn a light golden color. Sprinkle on a pinch of salt and stir in 3 tablespoons light brown sugar, 1/4 cup sherry vinegar, 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Stir to combine.
Add the chopped bacon and stir 1/2 cup cranberry juice and 1/2 cup dried cranberries into bacon mixture. Cook until the overall color is a dark brown and has a jam consistency, about 15 minutes. Give the Bacon Jam a taste and adjust the seasonings to your liking.
Allow the bacon jam to cool slightly and transfer to a serving dish. Store bacon jam in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready to use.
When ready to prepare the crostini, preheat the oven to high broil and slice the baguette into 2″ thick slices. Place the bread pieces onto a sheet pan and top with Gruyere cheese. Top the cheese with about a tablespoon of Cranberry Bacon Jam.
Place the sheet pan in the oven on the middle oven rack. Broil until the cheese melts and the bacon jam is heated through. This will only take about a minute. Remember when broiling, leave the oven door ajar and watch carefully so it doesn’t burn.
Remove from the oven when the cheese is melted to your liking and sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley for garnish. Serve and enjoy!