A slab of bacon glazed and braised in cider and mustard makes a winning brunch. If there's any leftover, slice it and fry it for the best bacon sandwiches ever.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 350 ml dry apple cider
- 60 ml (¼ cup) maple syrup
- Juice of 1 orange and 1 lemon
- 3 thyme sprigs, plus extra, to serve
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- 1 kg piece of bacon, rind scored (see note)
Apple and fennel salad
- 50 ml olive oil
- 1 tbsp cider vinegar, or to taste
- 1 tsp lemon juice, or to taste
- 1 tsp Dijon vinegar
- 2 Granny Smith apples, unpeeled, cut into matchsticks
- 1 baby fennel bulb, thinly shaved on a mandolin, fronds reserved, to serve
- 1 golden shallot, thinly sliced
- 1Preheat oven to 150C. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, add onion and sauté until tender (4-5 minutes). Stir in mustard, then add cider, maple syrup, juice and herbs, stir to combine, then season to taste.
- 2Place bacon skin-side up in a roasting pan that bacon fits in snugly, pour cider mixture over, season to taste, then bake until skin begins to turn golden (45-50 minutes). Turn over and roast for another hour. Remove bacon, then transfer cooking liquid to a saucepan and simmer over medium-high heat until syrupy (4-5 minutes).
- 3For apple and fennel salad, whisk oil, vinegar, lemon juice and mustard in a bowl, season to taste, add apple, fennel and shallot and toss to combine.
- 4Thickly slice bacon and serve hot drizzled with pan juices, and topped with apple and fennel salad, thyme and fennel fronds.
Note You'll need to order slab bacon in advance from your butcher.