Chow Bella

Epic Meal Time Makes Paula Deen Look Like a Health Nut

In a world where chefs are attacked for simply serving foir gras, being a carnivore can be a difficult proposition. Meatless Mondays? It's bad enough the economy is going down the tubes without giving up a satisfying portion of seared animal flesh every seven days. Even Taco Bell, that refuge for carnivorous gluttons, is soy-ling my base desires to consume lesser beasts.

The vegetarians are winning...for now.

Yet there are those who would stand against the forces of vegetarianism and portion control to serve as a bacon-wrapped, beer-battered reminder of how we got to be the dominate species on the planet: by eatin the competition. I'm refer to none other than those emperors of over-indulgence, Harley Morenstein and his crew of ravenous brahs on the internet video series Epic Meal Time.

Each Tuesday Morenstein and co. release another video unto the internet. Each features a calorie and fat counter to let you know how overboard these meals are. The soundtrack is the sort of dramatic fanfare normally associated with Hollywood epics like 300; yet the thundering drums and operatic choir of voices is even more appropriate to hear while watching a man eat through a trough made of bacon filled with chili containing Four Loko.

There is "Tequila Taco Night" in which a weekly family meal staple becomes an artery-clogging sight to behold. Bottles of Patron disappear into "tequila salsa" and "tequila guac." How do you make nachos epic? Skip the chips and use bacon instead.

An episode called "Meat Salad" begins with Morenstein asking what you know about health before crushing a side salad under a giant ham. What follows may be the most mouth-watering exercise in salad construction I've ever witnessed. Lettuce is replaced with steak. Pepperoni serves for carrots. Bacon is everywhere.

For Valentine's Day, Morenstein stuffs candied chicken hearts into cupcakes topped with bacon sprinkles and candied lamb hearts into a candied bacon cake.

So extreme, so laden with fat and calories (and Jack Daniels) are these meals that should one of the Epic Meal Time crew die of a heart attack, I wouldn't be surprised. And yet in a society so focused on what we shouldn't eat, we need Epic Meal Time. If watching a man eat a fifty pound hamburger isn't therapy, I don't know what is.

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Jonathan McNamara