The Meat Men, Rockingham, N.C. February 2001
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Tailgating Recipe and Tips of the Week

Tailgating Recipe
BBQ Addicts Bacon Explosion

   * 2 pound(s) thick-cut bacon
   * 2 tablespoon(s) Burnt Finger BBQ Rub, or your choice, divided
   * 2 pound(s) bulk Italian sausage
   * 1 cup(s) Burnt Finger BBQ Sauce or sweet Kansas City style barbecue sauce, divided

   * Smoker
   * Hickory wood
   * Gallon-sized ziplock bag
   * Scissors
   * Skillet
   * Brush

  1. To kick off the construction of this pork medley, you'll need to create a bacon basket weave using approximately 1 pound of raw bacon. The number of strips used in the weave will depend on the size and type of bacon you choose to use. To create the weave, place 5 strips of bacon side by side. Next, fold back the second and fourth strips and lay another strip of bacon perpendicular to the first layer across the first, third, and fifth strips. Unfold the second and fourth strips back to their original position to create an over/under pattern. Next, fold back the first, third, and fifth strips and place another slice of bacon perpendicular to the first layer across the second and fourth strips. Unfold the first, third, and fifth strips to their original position. Take note of the alternating pattern that has been created. Repeat this process for the rest of the weave.
  2. The next step is to add a layer of barbecue seasoning on top of the bacon weave. Evenly sprinkle 1 tablespoon across the bacon weave.
  3. Now that the bacon is well seasoned, it's time to add a layer of sausage. Although pressing out a patty by hand works just fine, the easiest method for creating the sausage layer is to place the bulk Italian sausage inside a gallon-sized ziplock bag. Evenly press the sausage to the edges of the bag to create a uniform patty. Remove the sausage from the bag by using scissors or a knife to cut along both side edges of the bag. Gently remove the sausage patty, keeping it intact, and place it on top of the bacon weave. If there is more than 1/2 inch of bacon showing around the edges of the sausage layer, expand the sausage layer by pressing the edges outward. Ideally, the sausage layer should be approximately 1/2 inch thick to create the pinwheel effect seen in the final product.
  4. In a skillet, fry the remaining strips of bacon to your liking. This should be roughly 1 pound of raw bacon, but it could be more or less depending on how much was used in the bacon weave. If you like soft bacon, make it soft. If you like crunchy bacon, make it crunchy. These fried strips are going to be a major part of the inner flavor of the Bacon Explosion, so cook them your favorite way. Regardless of how well done you like yours, you'll need to crumble or chop the cooked strips into bite-sized pieces and place them on top of the sausage layer.
  5. Since this is a barbecue recipe, we need to add another layer of barbecue flavor. Drizzle 1/2 cup Burnt Finger BBQ sauce all over the top of the cooked bacon pieces.
  6. Now comes the fun part. Carefully separate the back edge of the sausage layer from the bacon weave and begin rolling toward you. You want to include all layers EXCEPT the bacon weave in your roll. Try to keep the sausage as tight as possible and be sure to release any air pockets that form. Once the sausage is fully rolled up, pinch together the seam and ends to seal all the bacon goodness inside. This will also prevent the barbecue sauce from oozing out as it cooks.
  7. At this point you can start to see the final shape of the Bacon Explosion, but we're missing one key item. To complete the construction process, roll the sausage log forward, completely wrapping it in the bacon weave. Make sure it sits with the seam facing down so that the weight of the sausage roll will keep the bacon weave in place.
  8. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon Burnt Finger BBQ pork rub on the outside of the bacon weave, and now this bad boy is ready for the cooker. Smoke your Bacon Explosion over indirect heat at 225 degrees until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Normally this will take about 1 hour for each inch of thickness, but that can vary depending on how well you maintain your fire and how many times you open the smoker to take a peek.
  9. Once the Bacon Explosion is fully cooked, we need to add some finishing flavors. Remember the Burnt Finger BBQ sauce that we used for inner flavor? We'll be using that same sauce to glaze the cooked bacon weave. Using a small clean brush, coat the entire surface with a thin layer of sauce (approximately 1/2 cup). Sweet sauces are loaded with sugars, so they'll give your Bacon Explosion a nice glossy finish. Spicy and vinegar-based sauces don’t contain as much sugar, so they won't have that nice shiny look. To create the same effect, simply add 1 tablespoon honey to 1/2 cup sauce before glazing.
  10. Using a sharp knife, cut the Bacon Explosion into 1/4- to 1/2-inch slices to serve. If your roll was good and tight, you should now see a nice bacon pinwheel pattern throughout the sausage.

A piece of rope, a bungee cord and a tie strap can save
whatever catastrophe that duct tape can't


It's called First Aid for a reason...
First Aid should always come first.  Keep all of the necessities like adhesive bandages, aspirin, adhesive tape, alcohol swabs, antiseptic ointment, chemical heat & cold packs, gauze pads, cotton swabs, tweezers, scissors, sunscreen, etc. in a waterproof container.  Also, don't forget your prescription medicines.  After the trip is over, be sure to replace the items that you used.  Before each trip check the expiration

Water can be warmed up by putting it in a large black trash bag and laying it in the sun.
FROM BUBBA LAIDBACK: We use dark water jugs and I always sit them in the sun.

Place a sheet of fabric-softener (like "Bounce") inside your sleeping bag before you roll it up. It'll help keep it smelling fresh and also tends to repel bugs.

Slice a short length of garden hose length-wise and use it as a small blade-sheath for your camp saw or axe.

A "pants-legs" device uses an old pair of sweat pants...the kind with the elastic around the ankle. Cut one leg off at the knee then turn it inside out and sew the knee shut. When you're ready for bed, stuff the sack with towel, laundry, whatever, to use as a pillow. The elastic around the ankle of the pants-leg should keep your stuffing pretty secure.

Carry some sanitary napkins in your first-aid kit. They are compact, sterile, inexpensive and very absorbent. Use them as compresses to stop bleeding.

Waterproof wooden matches by dipping them in shellac.

If you KNOW it is going to be raining at the track, put on your first pair of socks, then slide thin plastic bags over your feet THEN your second pair of socks. (Cutting out the two sealed corners of a dry cleaning bag is good for this... it's really thin stuff.)

Cut plastic containers such as milk jugs or 2 liter soda containers for emergency bowls.  It's much easier if you soak them in very hot water before you cut them.

Those little flat plastic tags from bread and bun packages make good clothes pins for wet towels, etc.

To protect your feet from blisters, smear soap on the inside of your inner sock at the heel and under the toes. Carry a small bar of soap and when you feel your feet begin to get sore, give it a try.

To prevent batteries from wearing down if your flashlight is accidentally nudged on in your pack, take one battery out and replace it upside down. (Remember to switch it back at nightfall, dummy.)

A potato baked in the coals for one hour makes an excellent side dish.

An effective way to repel mosquitoes is to rub the inside of an orange peel on your face, hands, legs and arms.

Other pages updated today UPDATED 09/09/2011
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Laidback Racing has over a combined century of tailgating experience at 100's of races!