A few weeks ago (just before Christmas) the infamous “Bacon Explosion” recipe made its way around work. This culinary work of art is about 5000 calories of smoky bacon goodness. The ultimate BBQ meal.
So I decided to take the challenge of the Bacon Explosion head on, and created one for breakfast on Christmas morning. Now that is a pretty high risk move – trying a recipe untested on your in-laws! But as it turns out, the Bacon Explosion did not let me down, and it was enjoyed by all young and old.
After the success of the Bacon Explosion, and with Australia Day now just a few weeks away… I thought it was time to try to improve what no one thought could be improvable. The Challenge… create an Aussie version of the Bacon Explosion for Australia day. And something that Sam Kekovich would be proud of.
(Preparation time: 20 minutes, Cooking time: 90 minutes)
Before we get too far into it, note that this recipe will likely be the biggest contribution I ever make to Australian Culture. If you are from the Australia Day Council… get the forms ready for the Order of Australia, because after you taste this great US recipe I have copied improved for us Aussies, there is no way you could live with yourself knowing that I didn’t have OAM after my name!
To create this great dish this Australia Day, you will need to go down to your local supermarket, and get your hands on the following:
- 1KG of Middle Rasher Bacon
- 1KG of Lamb Sausages (if you can get the mint and rosemary gourmet ones, they are the best)
- 1 small tub of Greek Natural Yoghurt
- Rosemary Leaves
- Thick Mint Sauce (or Mint Jelly)
- Aussie Flag from Woolworths
Step 1: Prepare the bacon wrapping
This step is exactly the same as the original Bacon Explosion recipe. The goal here is to great a lattice of Bacon, that will encase the rosemary and minty lamb goodness. Take your middle bacon rashers and lay them out on top of each other. Cut the rashers so they form long rectangles. Doing this will ensure that we can get the squarest Bacon lattice possible. Keep the off cuts though, we will use them later.
Now that we have our strips of bacon, start weaving the bacon lattice together. The easiest way to do this is to lay down 2 pieces first, turned 90 degrees away from each other, with the end of one piece overlapping the other. Now lay down another piece parallel to the bottom piece, but with an end overlapping the second piece. Now fold the bottom piece back, and lay down another piece of bacon parallel to the second piece. Replace the folded back bacon. Repeat this process (just like in the pictures) until you have a nice bacon lattice!
Dust the bacon lattice with rosemary leaves. You can use fresh ones, or ones from a jar… because seriously, this isn’t Master Chef, so who cares
Chop all the left over bacon into reasonably small pieces, and then fry them in a pan until they are nice and crispy! If you can multi task in the kitchen, get this on and move to step 4 whilst they are cooking
Skin your Lamb Sausages and place the sausage meat into a bowl. Using your hands, mash them together so they no longer look like sausages. Now spread the lamb sausage meat across your bacon lattice, ensuring you get as much coverage as possible. Try to maintain an even thickness across the entire lattice.
With a dessert spoon, take three or four big dollops of yoghurt and then with the back of the spoon spread the yoghurt across the lamb sausage meat. Don’t be afraid to add more yoghurt – remembering it is better to have an even coverage across all the lamb.
By now your bacon pieces should be nice and crispy. Take them out of the fry pan and evenly distribute them all over the yoghurt. Feel free to eat a few at this stage, as you will be hungry from all the awesome smells!
This can get a little messy. Very slowly, roll the front edge of the lamb meat (not the bacon, just the lamb). Continue to slowly roll the sausage away from you, ensuring that the lamb doesn’t tear away as you do it. Once you get about 3/4 of the way along the lattice, stop rolling the lamb, and now roll the bacon back towards you. Doing this step slowly is the key, you don’t want to ruin the structural integrity of the bacon lattice, or the lamb/yoghurt/bacon roll. Once you are done you should have an awesome looking Lamb Explosion, almost ready to go in your Weber BBQ, or the oven.
Get your bottle of Mint Sauce, of Mint Jelly, and cover your Lamb Explosion with as much minty goodness as you want. Just make sure you get some on every surface, otherwise the bacon will burn.
Step 9: Drop it in the oven, or onto your BBQ
If you are totally Aussie, and have an old school Webber BBQ (not the new Webber Q ones, but the real old school ones) just drop the Lamb Explosion in for about an hour and a half with the hood on. If you are not as extremely Aussie, or just prefer to cook in the oven, put the Lamb Explosion onto the middle rack of your fan forced cooking machine. You should have preheated the oven to 230c – as soon as you put the Lamb Explosion in, drop the oven temperature to 180c.
Step 10: Beer
At least one, if not two beers will be required to be consumed before progressing to the next step (it is for Australia Day after all!). Having a round of totem tennis with your family is optional
A heap of mint sauce will now be surrounding the lamb explosion, mixing with all the lamb and bacon fat. Get your spoon and reapply that glaze to the Lamb Explosion, ensuring you don’t miss out on any of the fatty minty goodness!
After about 90 minutes the Lamb Explosion will be perfectly cooked, with the mint sauce caramelised to give the dish a nice golden brown finish. Take it off the heat and onto a chopping board ready to cut. There is no need to rest the meat like they say on Master Chef, but if you are afraid of burning your fingers whilst cutting the dish, best leave it for a few minutes.
Slice the Lamb Explosion just like you would a meat loaf. Make sure your friends gather around so they can see the unveiling of the beautiful lamb and yoghurt spirals
Step 13: Eat it
Lamb Explosion is best served with cold beer, and someone else doing the dishes.
If you love the look of this recipe, make sure you become a fan of the Lamb Explosion on Facebook – and post your Lamb Explosion photos for the world to see! If you really like it, feel free to buy me a carton of beer next time you see me.
Happy Australia Day!
PS. If you ever do this yourself and take photos, make sure you get a waterproof case for your camera… my DSLR now smells like raw meat!