So there I was.
My friend Hayes and I had been staring at the Broadbent Hams Country Bacon Hickory Smoked Pepper Slab in my refrigerator for days. This is a behemoth-sized piece of bacon. It was, frankly, intimidating. What could we possibly do with it that would do it justice? Sure, just throwing it on the grill and smothering it in barbecue sauce would produce a gigantic slab of deliciousness… but we wanted something special.
Enter the bacon tube.
This is a delicious, gigantic stuffed roll of bacon. It has sauteed potatoes and onions (and cheese – cheese is the glue) on the inside. It was astonishingly amazing.
Here’s how we did it.
“Bacon tube” is actually a bit of a lie when it comes to the name – it’s not rolled up, but instead is composed of three slices of the slab with 45-degree edges, assembled into a triangle.
As you can see, my concept of “45 degree angle” was a bit, uh, off. But, it worked okay.
After we sliced the slab up, we saw that our concept was possible. O, what joy! We quickly sauteed some onions and potatoes, throwing in generous amounts of dill and thyme. We then ran into a problem – our tube didn’t quite have enough containment to be able to fill it easily – and it certainly wouldn’t hold up through the cooking process. So, we decided to wrap it with cooking twine. This ended up being a phenomenal way to do it. We still had issues with filling it, however, resulting in the following setup:
We basically grabbed whatever we could to prop the sides of the bacon up (with the cooking twine already under it) while we put our delicious stuffing in it.
Then, we remembered our fond love of cheese. In went the cheese. (also, we needed some kind of glue to help containment) This was a great move on our part. I’m proud of it.
(also, look at how much pepper is on that slab! yum!)
We then put the third piece of the triangle back on and tied it all up. We plugged the ends of the tube with extra bacon.
We cut off the extra twine and shoved a bit of bacon in the places where my, um, creative slicing had caused gaps. It was beautiful.
As you can see, it was pretty well contained at this point – and on the grill it went.
After a little while, we saw that it was cooking up nicely – but we weren’t prepared for how great it was going to become.
After a little while, we rolled it over to give other sides a chance to become more awesome.
All in all, the entire thing took about three and a half hours to cook. We turned it occasionally and kept it between low and medium heat. Here are some finished shots.
The end result was astonishing and delicious. The bacon had a deliciously crisp outside that turned into smooth goodness inside. The cheese, potatoes and onions got an absolutely incredible taste from all the bacon juices.
We documented the entire process and uploaded all the photos to Hayes’ flickr account. I would definitely, definitely do this again – I feel like we did that slab proud.