“I will not tease Fatty” Bart Simpson

Who you calling FattyIf you’re from the Seventies, a fatty has a totally different meaning than the one I did the other night!

It’s called a Fatty, or a Bacon Explosion, but whatever you call it, a lot of pork gave up their lives for it. I’ve been trying to find the history of the Fatty and have to say I have come up empty. It seems to be a southern US invention and has its roots in the smoking community. That seems appropriate! In general it’s sausage wrapped in bacon and stuffer with cheese, jalapenos, and onions. I don’t think the Surgeon General knows about this yet because it should come with the warning, “Please consult your doctor before consuming!”

If you haven’t heard of this or experienced it, you have to try it at least once.

Weave a pound of bacon the same way as you would have at summer camp to make a mat or coaster. If you have a macramé practitioner or basket weaver in your family, get them to do it. Assemble the bacon wrap on parchment paper or plastic wrap, (it makes the process easier).  Then spread your sausage meat on top, (7 or 8 de-cased sausages), so that you have an even layer covering approximately ¾ of your bacon mat. Along the one side of the sausage, add your cheese, jalapenos and onion. If you don’t like the heat, just use the cheese.  Then skilfully using the parchment (or plastic wrap), start rolling into a tight uniform tube.  Tightly bind the entire roll with plastic wrap and leave it in the fridge to set-up for at least an hour.

My favourite wood to smoke this with is apple or cherry with a little hickory mixed in. When you’re ready, and your grill or smoker is at about 275f, place the Fatty of the grill (remember to take off the plastic first).  You’ll want to do this offset with a catch pan underneath for the drippings. There is a pound of bacon and sausage cooking there so be aware of flare-up and keep the grease away from the flames. It should take a couple of hours depending on your grill. You’re looking for an internal temperature of 165f.  Just before you take it off and the excessive fat is now in your drip pan, place it over the direct flame to crisp up the bacon. Watch this because you will get flame.

Let your Fatty sit and rest at least 15 to 20 minutes before you slice.

You can serve this as an appetizer or as a main. A little BBQ sauce drizzled on top is wonderful.

Don’t tell your doctor this came from me!

Be well and eat well!

Scott TaitCheese Stuffed Fatty

“When you invite the whole world to your party, inevitably someone pees in the beer.” Xeni Jardin

Practicing for the Super Bowl!

Practicing for the Super Bowl!

So the big game is coming up. You’re the guy with the big screen and the beer tap. You’re having way too many people over and you know something is going to get broken, the neighbors are going to complain and your wife has no intent of helping you with the food.

Here’s how to survive.

1                     Share the bounty. Ask people to bring something along with the beer. Salad, chips, popcorn, veggies (I was made to put that one in) and dip, anything that will lighten your load.

2                     More little food is better than big food. People want to snack. Change from burgers to sliders. You don’t want everybody to fill up on one thing.

3                     Timing is everything.  Work backwards from your scheduled time. Do something low and slow that you can prepare ahead and leave alone to take care of itself. Chili, stew, pulled pork, or brisket. Something that you can prepare and walk away.

4                     Only do one thing that needs immediate attention. If your doing wings, burgers, nacho, or something that has to be done at the last minute, have all your prep work done. Have the BBQ lit and up to temp. Have the veggies for the slaw shredded and ready to go for the last minute dressing. Have the beer in the fridge. Get as much done as possible before hand. Planning ahead means more eyeball time on the big screen.

5                     Don’t experiment! Go with your strengths. Doing something you’ve never tried before is for later. If you screw it up your chances of getting a pizza delivered to fill that void is slim. Remember this is the busiest day of the year for pizza delivery.

I’ve devised my menu on Seattle and Denver plus a little extra. Coffee rubbed brisket with a low and slow smoke served with slaw on dinner rolls. Denver chili over coals because I’m not doing a Denver omelet.   Bacon wrapped, jalapeno stuffed chicken legs. I love the option of chicken legs over wings. They reduce the amount of effort when you think about it. The average person will eat 5 or 6 wings but only 1 or 2 legs. When you have a large amount of people it reduces what you’re juggling on the grill. These are started about 45 minutes before anyone shows up but were assembled earlier in the day so they’re good to go for game time.

Remember, sharing, bite sizes, timing, prepping, and going with your strengths.

Lastly, have an exit plan. Plan on getting everyone home safely or making sure they have a place to stay. The day after the Super Bowl has the largest number of people calling in sick. Did you book a vacation day because your boss knows you’re not sick!

Last night was my first time on FanSidedRadio. Pre Super Bowl talk and food ideas for the party.

Check it out!  bit.ly/1mQpDfn

Be well and eat well


Toronto Underground Market November 2013

I had the opportunity to visit, for the first time, The Toronto Underground Market (http://www.yumtum.ca) in November. What a great event! Foodies galore, new tastes, and like-minded people who truly believe in alternative foods, preparations, and good times. It’s a movement that likes to experiment, taste, and celebrate foods in a nontraditional setting and atmosphere.

I’m looking to participate in the next one and to launch The Artisanal Grill to the world. I have some idea that I think will rock the palate and show some smoking and grilling skills.

The greatest tastes to my mouth were the Molasses Braised Pork Belly from Little Tomato and the Pulled Jerk Duck from King Catering! Others were good but my taste buds did back-flips when I had their offering!

Craft brews were abundant and the music rocked the Evergreen Brickworks!

What a night!

I whole-heartedly recommend this event the next time around. Who know’s, you might see me!

Be well and eat well!


Sometimes when someone offers to take your picture, they don't run away with your camera! Thanks to the stranger that thought the shot was spectacular!

Sometimes when someone offers to take your picture, they don’t run away with your camera! Thanks to the stranger that thought the shot was spectacular!

Guy satisfaction!

Guy satisfaction!

Fidel GastroKing CateringCrossroads DinerBoots and Bourbon

Pork belly to die for!

Pork belly to die for!

Gotta love a publication that loves bacon!

Check out this months edition of Tailgater Monthly!



Bacon makes everything better!

Bacon makes everything better!

“Generally speaking, food has to be spicier than it would be if you tasted it on the ground,” Peter Jones

Hot Garlic Drumsticks with Bacon OrzoYou have to try everything. Hot, sweet, savory, strong, smokey, even weird in life. You don’t have to like everything, you just need to try it. After all, if you don’t try something you might miss your new favourite thing, a new direction, a new person, or even a new opportunity. Going through life only doing or trying what you know will never take you down new avenues. Change, stretch, break that envelope that you live in.

Food wise, hot and spicy is a good thing. It wakes up your taste buds and gives them new opportunities to experience. It might be that you aren’t a big fan and that’s OK. You tried and maybe you’ll try again. Look past the hot and see the flavour. That’s what we chili heads do.

Tonight’s offering is chicken drumsticks marinated in garlic, olive oil, and Nando’s Hot Garlic Sauce served on bacon and parmesan orzo. The drums were grilled over charcoal low and slow to keep them juicy.

Be well and eat well!