The 2011 Bacon Explosion
I rarely talk about food on this blog, but I thought I'd share the "dish" I make for the Super Bowl.Let me preface this by saying that I am not a big meat eater. I don't eat beef at all and eat poultry or pork pretty sparingly. I don't have a problem with meat eaters...I've just never found certain meats appealing.
A few years ago, I heard about something called the Bacon Explosion from some music friends. The idea of it was not appealing to me, but Marc was intrigued, so I made one. It was a hit with the men at the Super Bowl party we went to back then, but I was so disturbed by how unhealthy it was. I told Marc that I would only make it once each year, for the Super Bowl.
And now, the 2011 Bacon Explosion...
There is no set recipe for my Bacon Explosion, but I tend to use maple bacon (Marc's request), sausage from Charlottesville's Organic Butcher, barbecue sauce, barbecue rub, peppers, onions, and cheese. We used sweet, Italian sausage this year, but I think I'll go back to using traditional sausage next year.
First came the weaving of the bacon quilt. This alone tends to get Marc excited.
Marc was acting as my photographer for this. While flipping through the images he shot to pick some for the blog, I thought it was cute that he took this one:
With the quilt woven, I spread a chipotle and cinnamon barbecue rub on it and let it sit for a little bit.
After putting down a sheet of wax paper, two pounds of sausage were spread into a square about the size of the bacon quilt. Some might make the sausage square smaller than the quilt so the quilt can be wrapped around the ends of the final log. Then came a small attempt to put something more than meat in this thing with the addition of the peppers and onions.
The rest of the bacon was cooked, chopped up, and then sprinkled over the veggies.
We were lucky enough to be able to use a homemade barbecue sauce this year. There's usually a store bought sauce involved. This one was made by some foodie friends of ours. There was some sort of South African spice in it. I can't remember the name.
The last layer is cheese. Sometimes I get exotic on this layer, but I went for a simple, shredded blend from the supermarket this year. I used the part skim/2% kind. It's kind of like putting Equal in sweet tea, though. I probably should have used the full fat kind.
Here's the fun part. I put wax paper between the layers to make this a little easier. The sausage was rolled into a log with the ingredients inside of it. The wax paper allowed this to happen without too, too much handling.
Once the entire thing was rolled up, it was transferred to a foil lined pan. The year I skipped the foil, I regretted it during the clean up.
I usually use a turkey baster to remove the pool of fat from the pan at this point.
We will be eating vegetarian for the rest of the week.