Let’s face it, bacon is just one of those things that recovering omnivore’s will never get over. It’s like the girl that got away, the one drink that leads to 5 and crack after rehab, it’s always on your mind. It smells great and because of it’s sweet, but salty, crunchy and greasy goodness that seems to make every dish better. UNLESS you are vegan.
Well pals, I think I’ve got it. Yes, I have the answer, a vegan bacon that isn’t a complete disappointment. The best way to make this is with a dehydrator, but an oven works too, but not as well. Either way, you are probably getting as close as you can, to real bacon taste and texture. Juuuust try it!
- 2 eggplants
- 4 tbsp tamari or coconut aminos
- ½ tsp liquid smoke
- 4 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1-2 chipotles (dried or with adobo)
- 3-4 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp salt
- Pinch black pepper
- Soak dried chipotles in ½ cup of warm water until soft. If you have chipotles in adobo sauce, skip this step. In a blender combine all of the ingredients except the eggplant and blend until well combined. This will be your marinade for both versions of this recipe.
- Using a mandolin, slice eggplant lengthwise into thin strips.
- Preheat oven to 425F. Coat eggplant in a little bit of oil. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lay the eggplant pieces on.
- Bake for about 7 minutes, flip and bake for another 4-5 minutes on the other side, until they begin to brown.
- Remove the tray and let cool. Change the temperature of your oven to 350F.
- Dip the eggplant into your marinade mixture. Place them back on the tray and bake for another 3-5 minutes until crispy.
- In a large bowl, pour the marinade over the eggplant bacon slices. Toss to coat each slice in the mixture, and allow these to marinate for 30 – 60 minutes. Spread out your bacon slices on a Teflex-lined dehydrator tray. They should be lined in single layers. Dehydrate at 115F for 10-14 hours. Or until they meet your desired crispiness.