All these beer reviews lately, you’d think this blog was about … beer. Au contraire, my friends (French for “nuh uh”). If you’ll point your attention to the navigation over there on the right side of this page, you’ll note a mysterious, delicious category called “Meat Stunts.” That’s where you’ll find instructions for home made bacon, the legend of the curiously named “La Caja China,” and our last Superbowl centerpiece, “Snack Stadium XXXL.”
After last year’s surge in post-game web traffic, I knew we had to do something spectacular this year. This time, inspiration came in the form of a slab of shelf-stable Broadbent pepper bacon I acquired from bacn.com (now owned by baconfreak.com). The predictable thing to do would have been to chunk it up into lardons (French for thick-ass pieces of bacon) or simply slice it thick for superdelishtstic BLT’s. But the meat stuntman in me wanted to stuff it with something.
So of course I went to the best stuffing of all: more pork. I picked up a whole pork loin from Gartner’s, along with some pork sausage-stuffed pork tenderloins. If you’re counting, that’s four types of pork product so far.
I had a plan going in, but it was just a bit of stray cholesterol until I actually opened up the slab. I had no idea how much room there was in there! I got so excited I forgot to take photos of the assembly process, so instead I’ll let you digest the photo below, and describe what’s going on after the break.
Back? Not what you were expecting, was it? Heh. So the body’s the pork loin, sliced at one end to form a mouth. Inside the “mouth” are two garlic cloves acting as incisors, and the traditional apple. A couple more garlic cloves form the eyeballs, and two apple slices form the sow’s ears. The legs are those sausage-stuffed tenderloins I mentioned, with garlic toes (Mmm, garlic toes). Now, I wanted this thing to actually be tasty, and I was a bit concerned about overwhelming samplers with a lot of grease. This creation was going to be wrapped in bacon for a few hours, after all. So before I tucked her in, I sprinkled her back and legs with fresh rosemary “bristles” and lots of chopped up garlic “garlic.” Beneath the sow, I cut some drainage slits in the bottom of the bacon blanket.
I set the oven to 350, and tried not to open it every 15 minutes to see how my monster was developing. The house smelled … so delicious it was actually almost sickening. Imagine a foggy morning so thick you have to turn your headlights on. Now imagine that fog in your nose, and the whole thing smells like bacon, rosemary and garlic. It was difficult to concentrate. But four hours later, I pulled the pig and … wow. I wish you could have tried it. It was delicious, and those that could get past its eerily lifelike appearance were able to taste all four meats in one bite. Best of all, no one got sick, despite the Russian Roulette-like meat game we played. Four chances to get trichinosis, but all cylinders came up empty.