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Oink! Bacon Maple Bars

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The recipe for successful innovation has always included creativity, focus and experimentation. Maybe it’s time to add bacon.

Just take a look at the whiz-bang innovation of the Bacon Maple Bar at the Plaza Super Jet, Wenatchee’s popular downtown grocery store. It’s the perfect blend of soft and crunchy, sweet and salty, porky and portable.

And it only costs 99 cents.

“People love these things,” said Jeff Lau, co-owner of the PSJ. “They don’t expect to love it, but one bite and they’re hooked.”

Why, just last week a customer came in and bought a dozen, he said with a knowing nod. “You’ve got to love them to do that. That’s a lot of Bacon Maple Bars.”

As it turns out, the Bacon Maple Bar is exactly what it sounds like. Take one doughnut-like bar, spread it with sweet maple frosting and top that with a wide strip of crispy bacon, baked just right to minimize grease.

Jeff’s father, Don Lau, who co-owned the PSJ for more than two decades, got the idea from Voodoo Doughnuts down in Portland, Ore. Voodoo sells all kinds of yummy concoctions, including Mango Tango (doughnut, mango frosting, and powdered Tang) and the Dirt Doughnut (doughnut, vanilla frosting and crushed Oreos).

Don handed the idea to PSJ’s deli manager, Kelly McDonnell (in photo), and she got cooking. She experimented a bit to find the best bacon and best way to prepare it. And the result is something to oink about.

The Bacon Maple Bar also got Kelly thinking about other combinations — for instance, the Chocolate Peanut Butter Bar and the Peanut Butter Raspberry Doughnut (raspberry filled doughnut with peanut butter frosting).

“It’s like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich,” she said. “Without the crust.”

Of course, not all of Kelly’s concoctions were a success. “The less said about the Chocolate Jalapeno Bar the better,” said Jeff Lau. “It was dismal.”

PSJ sells about 20 Bacon Maple Bars daily, and they’re available when the store opens at 7 a.m. That's for those of you who want to start your day with a breakfast made from two important food groups — frosted doughnuts and cured pork. You won’t be sorry.

Details: Plaza Super Jet (slogan: the Biggest Little Store in Town), 106 Okanogan Ave., across from the Chelan County Courthouse. Open 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 7 a.m. till midnight Friday and Saturday. Phone: 662-5410. Web: plazasuperjet.com.