Bison Liver Gogigui

As noted in a recent post discussing supplementing andouille with lamb’s heart, I happened upon a treasure trove of odd bits while walking through a Wisconsin farmer’s market. In addition to the lamb hearts, I found a pound of bison liver for a dollar. I had no idea what to expect. I figured it would be similar to beef liver and I was concerned with what the animal ate while it is was upright. I had an idea of the answer when I saw the prices of the more desirable cuts, but the grass-fed provenance was confirmed by the farmer, so I picked up the pound.

Extrapolating a few lessons I learned from cooking beef, pork and chicken livers, I knew to cook it hard and fast. As I have smelled an apartment after cooking beef liver, I knew I wanted to cook this outside, over charcoal. From here, with uncertainty regarding bison liver flavors, I chose to slice the liver, dip it in a gochujang, ginger and garlic sauce which is vaguely Korean. I wanted something strongly flavored to balance and, if needed, obscure the unmistakeable liver flavors.

So I soaked the liver in milk briefly to soften the liver flavors a bit, then dried the livers and finally stirred in the hot pepper paste mixed with soy, molasses and aromatics. A few hours later, I skewered the liver and lit a fire. Strategically speaking, I wanted the grill grate to be as close to the coals as possible. Once I accomplished that by setting the grill grate on the coals, the skewers rested nearly on the fire for a minute per side. As a final safeguard against any overly minerally liverness, I topped the now crispy skewers with cilantro, scallions and peanuts.

With all of the safeguarding, it seems as if I was eating something completely vile. In the end, the liver was sweet, richly textured and completely free of any strongly metallic flavors. A touch stronger than good chicken livers and a bit sweeter than most pork liver I’ve had. The additions of the marinade/sauce, then the greenery and peanuts were good additions, but in the end were probably not necessary.

Gochujang Sauce/Marinade

1″ of peeled ginger, grated 2 cloves of garlic, grated 2 tablespoons gochujang 1 tablespoon molasses 1 teaspoon soy sauce

Mix and put on everything you can grill


Test: #301: Bacon and SWISS ROLLS

The subject
The best things in life aren't always free. Sometimes, they're just really, really cheap.

Take Little Debbie's super-addictive, crackalicious snack cakes. Here it is 2010, and you can still purchase an ENTIRE box (between six to 12 items, usually) of the Tiny Temptress of Taste Treats' morsels for less than two bucks. Great news if you're a budget-minded mom packing desserts into your offspring's lunch boxes, or a hippie who's spent all his food money for the week on a Phish ticket but still desperately requires a palliative for his raging munchies.

Happily, this low price point also is perfect for your loyal BDJ Lab Techs, because after purchasing a box of Diminutive Deborah's Swiss rolls for today's mad bacon experiment, we still had plenty of dough left over to procure--what else?--more bacon (priorities, people). We wrapped some of that precious bacon around some Swiss rolls and baked those fatty mofos right up. Here's how it went...

The result
Not much to look at--the finished result closely resembles a bacon-ensconced Schnauzer turd--but man oh man, are looks in this case deceiving. While Swiss rolls were never our favorite LD delicacy (BDJ staffers are split between the fudge brownies and the nutty bars), we fell ass-over-teakettle in love with the bacon-wrapped roll. The dry cake and waxy coating morphed into a velvety chocogasm of sweet, gooey bacony heaven. Were the transmographied snack cakes not so insanely rich and weighty--and were we not relatively short on test bacon for the week--we might have wrapped up the entire box o' rolls and gone batshit bacon crazy. This is definitely a bacon trick worth pulling out for your next bacon-themed get-together.

The conclusion: Bacon + Little Debbie's Swiss roll = snackeriffic!

How To Spot A Bacon Addiction

how-to-spot-a-bacon-addiction

It’s no secret that bacon is big right now. If you’ve noticed the increased price of bacon at the grocery store, the high demand for bacon is to blame. Perhaps you’ve noticed that your son, spouse or significant other has gotten swept up in the bacon mania. His bacon consumption has gone way up. He talks about bacon on a regular basis. He chooses restaurants based on the prevalence of bacon on the menu. All these things have lead you to wonder if there might be something more serious going on. We’re talking full-blown bacon addiction! And so we’ve compiled this list of 5 ways to tell if he’s addicted to bacon.

1. Bacon: It’s Not Just For Breakfast

Does he eat bacon with foods that many people wouldn’t think of pairing with bacon? Like, a cupcake? Or a cocktail? Is he known for his tendency to wrap bite-sized foods in bacon? Does he pride himself on his ability to create a flawless bacon weave? On the other hand, if he has eaten an entire plate of bacon for dinner, these are all indications of a serious bacon addiction.

LOTR Hobbit meme

Credit: Bacontoday.com

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2. Bacon Thoughts

How many times a day does he think about bacon? This could be a difficult thing to gauge. You can ask, but there’s no guarantee he will answer truthfully. If he looks sheepish and mumbles an unusually low number or denies thinking about bacon altogether, this is a good sign of bacon addiction. Or if he unabashedly, enthusiastically declares a double digit number, bacon addiction is highly probable.

Credit: Orangeyouglad.com

Credit: Orangeyouglad.com

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3. Bacon Grooming and Apparel

Wearing bacon clothing and grooming with bacon-scented products are surefire signs of bacon addiction. Does he have a collection of t-shirts with bacon slogans and sayings? Perhaps he has a bacon tie, bacon suit or a bacon wallet. What’s lurking behind his medicine cabinet and shower door? If there’s bacon toothpaste and bacon body wash in the bathroom, bacon addiction is the likely cause.

Credit: Geekalerts.com

Credit: Geekalerts.com

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4. Makin’ Bacon

Just as brewing beer at home is all the rage, “making bacon” is also rising in popularity. This involves curing and smoking a slab of bacon at home. For the bacon perfectionist who wants control over the entire bacon making process, the bacon addict label is befitting.

boss-hog-s-bacon-cure-kit-4

Credit: Baconfreak.com

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5. Bacon Reputation

The most tell-tale sign of bacon addiction is if he’s already known for it among his family members and circle of friends. Do people constantly e-mail him bacon news stories, funny bacon memes and viral bacon videos? Has a family member given him bacon strip boxer shorts or pajama bottoms for his birthday or Christmas? Perhaps his aunt Edna has knitted him a bacon strip blanket. It should be no surprise to anyone that you’ve got a bacon addict in your midst.

Credit: Crochetdynamite.com

Credit: Crochetdynamite.com

So if your guy constantly thinks about bacon, wears bacon, smells like bacon, eats bacon and makes bacon, then he is indeed a bacon addict. Hey, at least he’s easy to shop for!

The post How To Spot A Bacon Addiction appeared first on Bacon Today.

Baby shower, redux

I promised some photos of the baby shower craftiness, so here ya go.

First, I broke out the patterned paper to make an "Oh, baby!" sign. Please ignore the total mess around said sign, as I was clearly too busy crafting to actually clean the house.


Then I headed to my local hardware store looking for something that would make suitable signs for each dish at the party. I thought about writing the names of dishes on rocks or printing out cute little signs, but eventually I settled on black tiles. They looked like adorable little chalkboards. I wrote on them in silver Sharpie, figuring I could just paint over them with chalkboard spray paint for reuse.


I had used this tutorial from Martha Stewart to make tissue paper pom poms, but they turned out more like blobs. Luckily, one of my co-hosts determined they'd be cute on the back of the couch.


I framed the cutout of the bird pattern I made for the invitations to use for table decor along with some mini-pumpkin branches and pine cones. (Plus, then I could brag on how I made the invitations. Duh.)


Finally, I wanted to brag about an item made by one of the co-hosts of the shower. The cake turned out absolutely adorably (and was her first time using fondant!). Check it:

Sriracha Lip Balm – New Product!

Tastynapalm

You may know that we've been boating in Sriracha flavored waters with the recent launch of Sriracha popcorn. 

This venture was so successful that today we launched Sriracha Lip Balm. It's the latest J&D's Foods product made with The Oatmeal and it's a strange combination of SPF 15 and making out with tasty napalm.  It's available for $3.99 with free shipping from J&D's at: http://store.baconsalt.com/Lip-Balm_c_10.html 

Or from The Oatmeal website.

Sriracha Lip Balm makes a great stocking stuffer for anyone that loves the rooster!