APPLES WITH CANDIED BACON A LA MODE
• 4 oz. really good bacon, cut into 1/2-in. cubes
• 1/4 c. sugar, divided
• 3 to 4 tart apples, like Granny Smith, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-in. slices
• Vanilla ice cream
Put the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat and cook until some of the fat has been rendered and it begins to brown on the edges, 6 to 8 minutes. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat from the pan and sprinkle the bacon with 1 to 2 tablespoons of the sugar. Turn the heat to low and cook, turning the bacon pieces occasionally, until the sugar begins to melt and coat the bacon, about 5 minutes. Adjust the heat as necessary to prevent the sugar from burning. When the bacon is dark, remove it with a slotted spoon and let it cool on paper towels.
Add the apples to the remaining bacon fat in the skillet, and cook until just beginning to soften on the edges, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add the remaining sugar and continue cooking until the sugar melts and the apples are very tender, 5 to 10 minutes more. Serve the apples over ice cream along with any pan juices and a sprinkle of the candied bacon.