A year and some change ago I heard about the over-hyped (but awe-inspiring, to the uninitiated) 'Bacon Explosion'. It seemed to me the sort of thing that only some kind of hyper-talented meat smoking fanatic would do. In other words, it seemed like the most awesome thing in the world. Bottom line, I knew I could never do that.
I mean... Who weaves bacon into a mat!?! And then smokes it? I had never smoked anything (in a smoker) at this point. A few months back I picked up a smoker. Ironically enough, I started smoking meat right after I quit smoking cigarettes. I'm sure Freud would find this to be quite significant.
Today, on a whim but after much research here at the smoking meat forums dot com, I decided it was time to do it. Weaving bacon turned out to be easy enough, and I built my first fattie. Spoiler alert: It turned out to be the most delicious thing I've ever tasted.
I started by weaving a 5 x 6 mat of thick cut bacon. I applied a generous amount of black Pepper to the bacon. Then I squashed and flattened a tube of Jimmy Dean breakfast sausage on to the bacon. Then I diced up some Bacon Spam to put on there. I then added mushrooms, a little bit of onion, and some mozzerella. Rolled it up (special thanks to the guy who suggested saran wrap) applied some mustard and a rub, and bathed it in the delicious embrace of mesquite smoke for several hours.
I did end up putting it in the oven at 350 for 40 minutes to firm up the internal bacon, but only after it had smoked for 5 hours.
The mozzarella really pulled its weight in this mix. it sort of bound everything together but kind of moderated the flavors - while absorbing a great deal of smoke. Freaking delicious. Next time I'll add more mushrooms and onions.
Did I promise pictures? OK.
As you can see in this last pic, the bacon was a bit soggy. Being one who prefers firm meat, I put it in the oven for 40 minutes at 350 and it promptly disappeared thereafter.