Thursday, July 14, 2011

Brats and Bungs and Mortadella Charcutepalooza!


I am in it for the long haul. This is Charcutepalooza July Challenge It is all about emulsification. This means blending meat into hotdog like texture. I smugly thought it would be a cinch but I was wrong. Dr Food and I decided to make the brats the day before a BBQ we were having with friends. Between grinding and being nervous that everything was being kept cold enough and stuffing and cleaning, I was tired. Sunday came and I could imagine my butt parked by the pool having my pool boy (ok, so I don't have a pool boy but Dr. Food is pretty good about getting up) serve me frosty adult beverages.


The grinding. I thought about using the same ONE grinding picture we took for all the challenges and meantime be sitting by that POOL, but nooooo. I had to be honest.


Pretttty brats.


They look like they are happy.


They filled the bill for our BBQ and I loved the taste of them. But that is not all! I decided to put them in a dish that I found on the Intertubes. It was completely up my alley. It is called Hadrian Style Strata. It was beyond good.


Some good rye bread.


Some good Sauerkraut. I could lie and say I made this, but I didn't make it myself this time.


Of course the star of the show, Mr. Brat.


I have to stop here to say that the Brats were suppose to be sliced thinly. I never could do this with my sausages. It oozes out and so I just end up crumbling it in the dish. That makes me think that stuffing was a waste of time but I won't say that outloud because I want to be a good Charcutepaloozer. Oh wait, I did say it out loud.


A strata is layers of yum with an egg mixture thown on top and all the layers submerged. Best part is it is made the night before and refrigerated.


Here it is ready to be put away for the night. Onto the Mortadella!


Hehe... and let me just say that I did not take MORE pictures of grinding, emuslifying and stuffing. First off it was a two person effort with no hands free for a camera. Second off you can see by Dr. Foods shirt that it was a bit intentse to begin with (look at the schmootz on his shirt)


As any proud mama I was thrilled when the process was all done.


Here is Mort in his water bath.


What did we have for dinner after that whole mess and dishes and a day of meat?


You got it! We had the Brat Strata that was patiently waiting in the refridge.


I really have to get some lighting in this house. The shadow effect only goes so far.


Ok, so there ya have it! Oh wait. I need to finish up the Mortadella fiasco.


We got out the slicer and began to slice. I popped a piece into my mouth and I was transformed from a meat loving woman into a gagging person. EWWWWWW. Not my favorite.


Dr Food said "It taste like Baloney". Good for Baloney I still hate it. I have 6lbs of this stuff and I started having an anxiety attack. What am I going to do? Well, called our neighbor Jeff to come over "Hey Jeff, you like baloney?" He did and he is the proud owner of about a pound of Mortadella. Dr. Food took some to work for the folks he works with. "Honey, you did take it work didn't you?"


I even tried frying. Nope, I still feel like a 1 year old trying broccoli for the first time. Spit.


Anyone want some Mortadella?

Wait! There is more. Since I am no damn quitter I decided to make this Mortadella and Cheese Studded Bread. What the heck did I have to lose other than all that perfectly good cheese.


I still can't get over what a thing of beauty the Prosciutto is. That also went into the bread. So did Emmental cheese and Fontina.

The dough is split and put into two pans.


They rise in a 1 quart plastic bag.


When they come out they look like this.


I have two of them. I haven't tasted it yet because I am waiting for Dr. Food to come home. I will let you know if it is good. I will let you know if I am a Mortadella convert. On the other hand I will let you know who I give it all away to.

Hadrian Style Strata
adapted from

4 slices rye or white bread
1/2 c. well drained sauerkraut, snipped
1/2 tsp. caraway seed
1/2 lb. cooked Polish sausage or bratwurst, thinly sliced
1/4 c. sliced green onion
4 oz. thinly sliced Mozzarella cheese
4 beaten eggs
2 c. milk
1 tbsp. all-purpose flour

Diagonally halve bread slices to make 8 triangles. Arrange half of bread triangles in an 8"x8"x2" baking dish.
In a small mixing bowl stir together sauerkraut and caraway seeds and set aside.

Cook bratwurst sausage and onion for 3 to 4 minutes. Drain. Spoon sauerkraut mixture over bread, top with sausage mixture and cheese slices. Arrange remaining bread on top of cheese. Beat together the eggs, milk and flour; pour over strata. Cover and chill in refrigerator for 3 to 24 hours.
Bake, uncovered in a 325 degree oven for 1 hour. It is done when knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before serving.

Cheese-and-Mortadella-Studded Bread
Gourmet | September 2006
Ronnie Venturoli, Bologna

Read More

7 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces and softened slightly, plus additional for greasing pans
1 cup warm water (105-115°F)
1 (1/4-oz) package active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1/2 teaspoon sugar
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 oz finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (1 cup)
1 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
3 1/2 ounce Emmental cheese, cut into 1/4-inch dice (2/3 cup)
3 1/2 ounce Italian Fontina, cut into 1/4-inch dice (2/3 cup)
3 1/2 ounce sliced imported mortadella (preferably from Bologna), cut into 1/4-inch pieces (3/4 cup)
3 1/2 ounce sliced prosciutto cotto or baked ham, cut into 1/4-inch pieces (3/4 cup)

2 (8-inch) round cake pans (about 2 inches deep) or 1 (12-inch) round cake pan

Butter cake pans, then line bottoms with a round of parchment or wax paper, and butter paper.

Stir together water, yeast, and sugar in a small bowl and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. (If mixture doesn't foam, start over with new yeast.)

Blend flour, parmesan, softened butter, salt, eggs, and yeast mixture in a food processor until combined well.
Transfer mixture to a large bowl and stir in remaining ingredients with a wooden spoon until evenly distributed. Divide dough between pans, spreading evenly, then enclose each pan in a large (1-gallon) heavy-duty sealable plastic bag and seal bags. Let stand at warm room temperature until dough has risen to about 1/2 inch from rim, about 1 1/2 hours.

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F.

Remove pans from bags, then bake bread until tops are golden and bread begins to pull away from side of pans, 30 to 45 minutes.

Transfer tortas in pans to racks to cool to warm, 1 to 2 hours. Run a thin knife around edge of each pan and invert rack over pan, then invert bread onto rack. Remove paper and use same method to invert bread onto a platter. Cut into wedges.


  1. That all looks incredible. And that picture of you kissing Mort is priceless. Too bad you didn't like it! I would have helped you out, you know.

  2. I feel so much better reading your post, I thought I was the only one that didn't really like what I made this month. I'm not a bad charcutepaloozer after all! Gad I didn't make the Mortadella too, I had a hard enough job getting rid of excess hot dogs!

  3. I love the way you write. I was really looking forward to reading this post when you tweeted your response to the mortadella.That bread looks really good.

  4. Lori at RecipeGirlJuly 15, 2011 at 8:44 AM

    Wow, what a project that was!!  I haven't gotten into any of the challenges myself... just kind of watching from afar.  I just love your writing style... you had me giggling :)

  5. Love this! Looks so good, definitely wished I had this for breakfast!

  6. This post was like a rollercoaster ride for me. It was thrilling until the bologna reference and then my stomach turned. Haha! I'm all for the prosciutto. Yummy!

  7. Janis, you kissed the bung! Love your post!

  8. Hysterical & lovely :-) Of COURSE you kissed the bung! My sister :-) I'm nearly done with hot dogs. Down to wire. On market day no less. Wheeee!

  9. a) I loved that you kissed "Mort" even if you didn't like him.
    b) Your brats and that strata look amazing, me want.
    c) I'm glad I stuck to my hot dogs :-)

  10. You are a very good sport. Thanks for playing along.

  11. I'm sorry, but nothing that looks that much like an incredibly magnified man's privates could taste good. I don't know a woman alive that would say, "mmm, that tastes like a good steak." Bologna is the absolute best that Hindenburgish could ever hope for.

    Your brats, however, held me in awe. I'm from the Midwest. We love brats. Yours look better than any I've found up there.

  12. That picture of you and Mort just popped up (via Punk Domestics) on my FB feed and made me so totally happy.  I'm also happy that a lady as game as you are also had some mortadella issues.  I have half of mine in the freezer - might toss it into that bread.  And might stick with those brats next time...

  13. This was hysterical! I adore mortadella. It's my favorite cold cut. I don't eat it often but when I do it's and occasion. I was really hoping it turned out good. It looked good...well, maybe not in it's little tummy casing thing, but sliced it looked delish. If I was nearby I would take some.

    So fun. hugs!

  14. I want you to adopt me and let me live with you and you can make me all of this every single day. What do you say??? :-D Sooooooo buzzed this (and drooled a lot*)

  15. Janis,
    You are too funny. After that big kiss, I am so sorry you and Mort didn't get along! Btw I am never blending meat again...blech.

  16. Um, I really could not love you more for kissing the bung. You are awesome!

    Kim xo

  17. Aw, love you too.

  18. Wow, what an adventure there.  Love it!

  19. Concerning Jaden Haire, check this out:

  20. Wow - very impressive effort, particularly the mortadella!  And great idea on the bread.  No words for the horrific state of Dr. Food's shirt, other than how hilarious and fitting that it's a CIA shirt...