Special equipment: Chinese steamer basket and metal cooling rack.
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
In a small bowl, combine the star anise, clove, and black pepper. Dust each piece of bacon with the spices.
Heat a large, oven-safe saute pan over low heat until hot. Add the seasoned bacon and cook for 10 minutes. Transfer the pan to the preheated oven and cook for another 10 minutes.
Place a large saute pan on the stovetop. Add the coriander to the pan and then place the metal cooling rack on top of the pan. Scatter the mushrooms in the steamer basket and place the basket on top of the cooling rack. Cover the saute pan, cooling rack, and steamer basket with aluminum foil. Turn the burner on low heat and allow the mushrooms to smoke for 10 minutes. Carefully remove the steamer basket and metal rack from the pan. Dump out the coriander. Place the pan over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon butter and the smoked mushrooms. Saute the mushrooms until crispy, about 6 to 8 minutes. Add salt, and pepper, to taste.
Remove the mushrooms from the pan, and in the same pan add 1 stick butter. Melt the butter over medium heat until the foam subsides and butter just begins to turn brown. Stir in the thyme and cook, stirring, until the butter is golden brown. Season with salt and pepper.
Remove the bacon steaks from the oven. Pour the browned butter over the steaks and serve each with mushrooms on the side.
This recipe was created by a contestant during a cooking competition. It has not been tested for home use.
Recipe courtesy of Tom Pizzica