With the Arizona State Fair headed our way at week's end, we at Chow Bella decided on our latest challenge: Create a "fair food" that kicks it up a notch. No one dared to cook with bugs, but we did have some creative entries. Check back later this week, when critic Laura Hahnefeld will choose her favorite.
Today's entry: Ando Muneno's Triple Bacon Corn Monstrosities
I had three basic objectives for this challenge. First, I knew our resident food critic loves food on sticks. Second, our outgoing webninja Johnathan McNamara has an unholy fondness for bacon. Finally, it had to be over the top, a recipe that would elicit revulsion and curiosity in equal measure.
I worked this problem with fiance for well over a week. Clearly we needed to find some way of putting bacon on a stick, preferably after battering and deep frying it. But what kind of bacon? What kind of batter? Could chocolate be added to truly define it as fair food?
Our major breakthrough came during a shopping trip when our gaze fell upon SPAM with bacon. A relevant internet meme came to mind but I said no, we needed to go deeper. So we decided to wrap the bacon spam in bacon and then add bacon to the batter.
But what kind of batter would be appropriate for this pork singularity? My initial inclination was to go with a light tempura batter but tempura is notoriously temperamental. I needed something else to be a vehicle for my spam ark.
In the end it was Alton Brown's "Man Food" episode that would be my salvation. Corn dog batter would provide the bulk I needed to fully contain what I had wrought and it would accept the presence of bacon bits.
Thus was born the Triple Bacon CornSPAM.
Recipe after the jump
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Triple Bacon CornSPAM
What you'll need:
1 can SPAM with bacon
1 package quality bacon
1 package strong skewers
NOTE: We used these because their width made handling the skewers extremely easy.
What to do:
1. Slice spam 1/4 inch thick.
2. Wrap each slice tightly with a single piece of bacon, preferably such that both bacon ends end up on the same side of the spam.
3. Cook remaining bacon, drain and set aside.
4. Retain bacon fat and fry bacon wrapped spam until bacon is crisp and done. Fry the side with loose bacon ends first to prevent the bacon from curling away from the spam. Drain thoroughly, skewer and set aside to cool.
5. Chop cooked bacon finely and set aside.
6. Prepare corn dog batter as per recipe.
7. Mix chopped bacon into batter.
8. Lightly dust bacon wrapped spam with corn starch.
9. Apply just enough batter to cover all parts but not so thickly that it is dripping off.
10. Optimally, use a deep fryer set to 375 degrees. If not, quick fry in 1 inch of oil.
11. Serve immediately with any sauces of your choosing. Surprisingly good with chocolate sauce.
12. Try not to reflect too deeply upon you just ate.