Monday, September 30, 2013

Adventures with Bacon: The 50/50 Burger

So Labon's been watching the Destination America channel. In particular he's taken with the United States of Bacon. Heh. That rhymes. Anyway, there was an episode where they talked about the "50/50 Burger," popularized at Slater's in Huntington Beach, CA. Quite simply, it's a burger made from 50% ground beef and 50% bacon. Do I have your attention?

This went down at Casa de Labon. He did the shopping too. He asked the butcher at the grocery store about grinding the bacon. He declined citing how terribly it would gum up his meat grinder. Fair enough.

So we decided to employ the food processor. Behold: one pound ground beef beside one pound ground bacon. Can you guess which is which? We decided that ground bacon looks kind of gross.

But the two together make some nice looking patties.

So there's a high fat content in these things. Drippy fat means Labon had to do some vigilant flippin.

Slater's serves the burgers with a fancy chipotle mayo and avocado and a fried egg. We didn't have all that mess--or really even the desire to fancy it up that much. But the egg sounded pretty great. We also slipped some mayo on the bun.

The yolk broke open before I could get that first bite in. But looking at it makes my mouth water even now. That drizzly, gooey goodness getting all over the burger made it just perfect. We served it up with some sweet potato fries and some dill pickle wedges.

Wow. In real time I could feel my wedding band and my watch band getting tighter as my extremities swelled from the sodium in this meal. But when you've got a bacon burger in your hands, it's hard to care about those little details. Labon was kind enough to send me home with some leftovers. My 7 year old daughter's reply? "Wow! I wish I'd been at that party." Yes. It was a bacon party for two. Delicious burgers. But with that much bacon, I have to declare that this is a sometimes food, people.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ruminations of a Carnivore

This is a broad head tip to a crossbow bolt that I used on Tuesday September 24th to kill my first deer. For some time now I've been wanting to try my hand at hunting.

My motivations were varied. On a very simple level, my family had been in a serious car accident with a deer on the highway in 2009. That event helped bring my attention to the overpopulation problem among deer in North Carolina (like many places).

Also, I have started to become suspicious of the hormones and antibiotics present in our food chain thanks to modern animal farming techniques.

Lastly, I was aware that, as a meat-eater, my relationship to my food was very distant. If I want pork chops, I just hit the grocery store and select whatever looks best. How often do I think about the fact that they came from an actual animal that used to hang out and do whatever pigs do? It's not all that often. Lately it's occurred to me that it would be worthwhile to have a closer connection to (and respect for) the food that I eat. I heard somebody on the radio once talk about how "giving thanks" takes on greater significance when you had some connection to the animal outside of the styrofoam tray.

What follows is my experience as a hunter. There are some photos of a dead animal. There's some blood. If you're squeamish about such things, be forewarned.