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Traegerized Pepperoni Pizza Pockets

Posted by sbulloch on November 2, 2014

Traegerized Pepperoni Pizza Pockets

Looking for a simple weeknight meal/afternoon snack/party food/crowd pleaser type of recipe? Then look no further, these Traegerized (yeah, it's a word) Pizza Pockets fit the bill! Super simple to prepare and quick to bake, these fresh pizza pockets put those microwaved wanna-be's to shame. Packed full of warm, melty cheese and kissed with that signature Traeger smoky goodness, these little handheld bites will disappear faster than you can whip them up.

The secret to making the perfect pocket is the type of dough you use. Look for "seamless crescent dough sheets" for the best result. If you can't find them, regular crescent dough will work great, just pinch the seams closed so your filling doesn't leak out.

 

Traegerized Pizza Pockets

 

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10-12 minutes
Serves: 8 people
Recommended Pellets: Any

INGREDIENTS:
2 cans refrigerated crescent dough sheets
1 cup marinara sauce
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Your favorite pizza toppings
Garlic salt (to taste)
Italian seasoning (to taste)
4 tablespoons Parmesan cheese

PREPARATION:

Start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open for 4-5 minutes. Place a pizza stone or an insulated baking sheet on the grill grate and close the lid. Turn the temperature setting up to 375 degrees and allow the grill to preheat. While the grill is preheating, assemble your pizza pockets.

On a large work surface, unroll the first can of dough.

Using a pizza cutter, lightly press on the dough to divide the sheet into 8 equal pieces. Don't cut all the way through the dough.

Spoon 2 tablespoons of the sauce onto each portion of dough. Top with 2 tablespoons of mozzarella cheese and your desired toppings.

Gently unroll the second sheet of dough and lay directly on top of the bottom sheet and fillings.

Using the side of your hand, press the top dough down around the filling to create 8 equal pockets. Top each pocket with the Italian seasoning, Parmesan cheese, garlic salt.

Cut the pizza pockets out with a pizza cutter.

Place the pizza pockets on the preheated pizza stone and bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.

Serve immediately.

Traegerized Pepperoni Pizza Pockets

Traegerized Pepperoni Pizza Pockets

Printable recipe:

Traegerized Pizza Pockets.docx (14.11 kb)

Bacon Wrapped Mushroom and Wild Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs

Posted by sbulloch on November 2, 2014

Bacon Wrapped Mushroom and Wild Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs

Our local butcher constantly taunts us with a long shiny glass case of beautifully prepared meat dishes just begging to be taken home and Traeger'ed. One of our favorites from said case is a mushroom and wild rice stuffed chicken thigh wrapped in bacon appropriately dubbed a "Cowboy Griller." Now, our butcher plays it pretty close to the chest when it comes to recipes so we had to do our best to recreate this dish for all you fantastic members of Traeger Nation. Lucky for you, we're pretty dedicated when it comes to kicking out killer recipes and we wouldn't rest until this one was mastered. Mission accomplished! For your eating pleasure, we present Traeger's take on the Cowboy Griller.

Rich and hearty portobello mushrooms and wild rice pair with melty parmesan cheese for a filling that is out of this world (try not to shovel forkfuls into your mouth before putting it on the chicken.) The filling is wrapped up in a tender, juicy package by boneless, skinless chicken thighs and then secured by long strips of man's best friend: bacon (and maybe a couple of toothpicks.)

 

Cowboy Grillers

 

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes to an hour
Serves: 4
Recommended Pellets: Hickory, Cherry, Pecan, Oak

INGREDIENTS:
8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
8 strips bacon
For the stuffing:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup diced white onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1 8 oz package baby portobello mushrooms, diced
1 cup prepared wild rice
1/2 dry white wine
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and black peppers to taste

PREPARATION:

In a large skillet, melt the butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced onions and cook until they are soft and starting to brown, about 5-6 minutes.

Stir in the garlic and mushrooms and cook for an additional 3-5 minutes, until the mushrooms start to release their juices and soften. Stir in the wild rice and turn the heat up to high.

Pour the wine into the hot pan and using a spatula, scrape the bottom of the pan while stirring the stuffing mixture. This gets all of the yummy browned bits from the bottom of the pan and concentrates the flavors of the filling. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cheese and salt and pepper.

To assemble the grillers, start by laying two pieces of bacon across one another.

 

 

Season the chicken thighs liberally with salt and pepper.

Place a chicken thigh on the intersection of the bacon. Mound approximately 1/3 cup of the filling mixture onto the center of the chicken thigh.

Place another chicken thigh on top of the mixture in the opposite direction of the first chicken thigh so when the bacon is brought together over the top, the thighs don't overlap but interlock forming a seal around the filling.

Bring each end of bacon around the chicken thighs and secure with toothpicks. Repeat the assembly procedure with the remaining chicken thighs and filling.

When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4-5 minutes). Close the lid and turn the temperature setting up to 325 degrees. Allow the grill to preheat for 10-15 minutes.

Place the assembled cowboy grillers directly on the grill grate and close the lid.

Grill for 25 minutes, flip and grill for an additional 25-35 minutes or until an internal thermometer reads 165 degrees F.

Remove from the grill and let rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. Big eaters can typically eat one whole cowboy griller, but we were plenty full by sharing one between two people. Enjoy!!

Bacon Wrapped Mushroom and Wild Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs

Bacon Wrapped Mushroom and Wild Rice Stuffed Chicken Thighs

Traeger'ed Smoky Beginner's Brisket

Posted by Traeger Service on November 2, 2014


Traeger's Beginner's Brisket

Don't let the name of this recipe fool you. Although it may be called Beginner's Brisket, it will seriously make you look like a brisket award-winning champion. And there's no reason why you need to tell anyone how easy it is. That can be our little secret.

This recipe bombshell is in our Traeger's Everyday Cookbook.

BEGINNER'S BRISKET

Recommended Pellets: Hickory, Oak
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time:10-12 hours
Serves:6-8 people

INGREDIENTS:

1 6-pound brisket flat, trimmed
Traeger Beef Rub
2 cups beef broth, beer or cola (I used cola for a little added sweetness)
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
Traeger Texas Spicy Barbecue Sauce

Season the brisket on both sides with the Traeger Beef Rub. Make the mop sauce by combining the cola (or broth or beer), apple cider vinegar and Worcestershire sauce in a clean spray bottle.

Seasoned Brisket

When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4-5 minutes). Arrange the brisket on the grill grate fat-side up.

Smoke for 3-4 hours, spraying with the mop sauce every hour.

Cooked Brisket

Set the temperature to 225 degrees F and continue to cook the brisket, spraying it occasionally with mop sauce until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the meat reads 180-190 degrees F. This will take close to 6 hours longer. But be patient because it's definitely worth the wait and we all know that low and slow is the way to go.

After you take it off the grill, wrap it up in foil and let it rest for 30 minutes. This process will yield even better results if you put the foil-wrapped brisket in an insulated cooler or wrap it additionally with thick bath towels. The fat and outside of the brisket is so much hotter than the inside, wrapping it helps the brisket to come to a uniform temperature.

Unwrap the meat and cut off the fat cap.

Use a sharp knife to make thin slices, approximately the thickness of a pencil, across the grain of the brisket.

Traeger's amazing beginner's brisket

Serve with Traeger's Texas Spicy Barbecue Sauce and it will look and taste like a pro.

Easy brisket recipe

For more handy brisket tips and pics check out this site.

Southwestern Flank Steak Pepper Jack & Poblano Pinwheels

Posted by Traeger Service on November 1, 2014

Anything that can be stuffed with a variety of cheeses, vegetables, meats and of all things BACON and rolled up into a neat 'lil package deserves to be in our bellies!

But this here ain't no turkey! Our stuffing of choice for this inexpensive but remarkably impressive butterflied flank steak is... (wait for it) BACON and roasted poblano peppers with a smothering of some spicy pepper jack cheese. It may burn a little but the burn tastes so good!

SOUTHWESTERN FLANK STEAK PEPPER JACK & POBLANO PINWHEELS

PREP TIME: 20 minutes
COOK TIME: 35 minutes, total
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Mesquite, Hickory or Maple
SERVES: 4 to 6

INGREDIENTS

1 flank steak, about 2 lbs
3 whole Poblano or Pasilla chiles
8 to 10 slices pre-cooked bacon (cooked but still pliable)
4 ounces thinly sliced pepper jack cheese
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoons ancho chile powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more to oil the steak
3 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

PREPARATION

Trim the flank steak, removing any silverskin or excess fat. Then butterfly the steak by holding your free hand flat against the top of the steak and inserting the knife in the middle of the trimmed edge of the steak. Start slicing it horizontally through the middle. Slowly cut with the grain from one side to the other, leaving the back edge intact like the spine of a book.

Keep working the knife across slowly and carefully cutting through the meat, keeping the knife parallel to the board and gently pulling it open as you go. Stop when you are about 1/2- to 1/4-inch from the other side. If it doesn't lie flat, gently pound the seam with the palm of your hand.

Get starting roasting those peppers. Start the Traeger on Smoke, lid open, for about 5 minutes or until the fire is established. Preheat to High heat, lid closed, for about 15 minutes.

Place the chilies directly on the grill grate and roast until they blacken and blister on all sides, turning every 3 to 5 minutes. (10 to 15 minutes total)

If you haven't already partially cooked your bacon, now is a great time to throw it on the Traeger and cook it until the fat has rendered but the slices are still soft.

Put the roasted peppers in a plastic bag and let them rest for 10 minutes. Take them out of the bag and carefully peel off the skin and open the chiles flat and remove the stem and seeds.

Combine the chile powder, smoked paprika, cumin, garlic, olive oil, salt, and black pepper in a small bowl and mix to form a paste. Add more oil if it seems too thick to spread.

Rub the chile paste into the steak, reserving a couple of teaspoons to season the outside.

Layer the flank with the bacon slices, pepper jack cheese and flattened chilies, leaving a 1-inch border at the top and the bottom.

Carefully roll the steak away from you (the grain should run width-wise), tightening as you go until it is rolled into a cylinder. Let it rest with its seam-side down.

Use butcher twine to tie the beef tightly, spacing the ties evenly every 2 inches.

Place the flank steak directly on the grill grate and cook at High heat for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until the internal temperature registers 125 to 130 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer, rotating it a quarter turn every 3-5 minutes.

Transfer to a platter, let rest for five minutes, and then slice it into rings about 1 1/2 inches wide. Serve 'em up!

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Southwestern Flank Steak Pinwheels Recipe.docx (13.06 kb)

Traeger'ed "McRib" Sandwich

Posted by mmillet on November 1, 2014

Traeger'ed

The brilliant thing about McDonald's McRib Sandwich is that it's all of what we love most - the meat! - and none of what takes up valuable space and time - the bones. One of the downsides is that the McRib comes and goes as it sees fit. (That selfish little snot!) For any fast food aficionados it can make you a bit heartsick. Well, cry no more, my dear!

We can definitely Traeger that!

The other stomach-lurching downside is that technically we don't really know how much meat IS actually in that patty. According to McDonald's website the ingredients are "pork, water, salt, dextrose, BHA, BHT, propyl gallate and citric acid."

Yeah.

Any time you have to "google" words listed as ingredients there is a problem. And by their description it's most likely composed of plain ole' ground pork instead of the more flavorful, expensive and mouth-watering cousin: rib meat. Their meat is doctored and enhanced with who-knows-what's-in-there chemicals, frozen, and then reheated just for you.

We believe in using the best additive around - SMOKE. Simple yet euphorically effective.

TRAEGER'ED "MCRIB" SANDWICH

COOK TIME: 6 hours if preparing the ribs the day of
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Oak or Hickory
SERVES: 6 to 8

INGREDIENTS

PICKLES
1 1/2 pounds of small pickle cucumbers, about 3 to 5" long
2 tablespoons pickling spices
1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
1 1/2 cups distilled white vinegar, 5% acidity
1 1/2 cups sugar

RIBS
1/2 to 1 rack leftover barbecue ribs (or use our 321 Rib recipe to make some)

HOMEMADE BARBECUE SAUCE
1 cup ketchup
¼ cup water
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
⅛ cup brown sugar
1½ tbsp. yellow mustard
1½ tbsp. onion powder
1½ tbsp. garlic powder
1 tbsp. mesquite liquid smoke
1½ tsp. cayenne pepper

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
6 to 8 buns

PREPARATION

If you don't happen to have leftover ribs on hand, follow our easy and easily addictable 321 Ribs recipe adding 1/4 cup of brown sugar and a sprinkle of chile powder into the rub on both sides of the ribs.

If you already have the ribs prepared, get started on the pickles. (Or feel free to use your favorite store-bought pickles.) These pickles can be made several days or weeks in advance.

Peel the cucumbers and slice them into 1/8" disks. Place the cucumber slices in a bowl. Sprinkle with the salt, and mix it all together. Put the bowl in the fridge for 30 minutes up to 3 hours. (The salt will pull water out of the cucumbers and help them absorb more of the pickling flavors.)

Put the vinegar and sugar in a saucepan, and add the pickling spices. (This smells pretty strong so may may want to turn on the exhaust fan while it boils.) Bring to a boil and back it down to a simmer and let the spices steep for about 30 minutes.

Drain the cucumbers in a colander, rinse off excess salt and shake off excess water. Pour the spiced vinegar mixture through a fine strainer or cheesecloth to strain out the spices. (Discard the spices but reserve the syrup.)

Pour the spiced syrup over the cucumbers while it is still hot until they are submerged.

After you've devoured your Traeger'ed rib sandwich and your fill of pickles, put any remaining pickles in a clean jar, seal tight and chill. They can be used immediately but it takes a few days to reach peak flavor. Keep the pickles in the refrigerator.

We love a good homemade barbecue sauce but of course we have some pretty darn incredible barbecue sauces that you could use as well. Combine all of the barbecue sauce ingredients in a saucepan over low heat. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.

If you are making the ribs the day of, allow the ribs to cool before cutting them into individual rib bones and cutting the meat off of the bones. Carefully run a sharp knife along the bones to remove the meat but try not to hack off any cartilage. Chop the meat into 1/2" chunks.

You can either reheat the meat on the Traeger/microwave with a little barbecue sauce or go sauceless and just squirt some barbecue sauce on top when you assemble the sandwich.

Give the buns a good toast for about 5 minutes on the Traeger set to High heat.

Traeger'ed

It's time to put together your Traeger'ed McRib sandwich and enjoy those tasty fruits of your labor. Spoon a heaping pile of the chopped rib meat onto the bun. (No, we didn't form the meat into an additive-loaded patty but we think you're better off for it and it'll certainly taste better!)

Top the meat with a few squirts of the barbecue sauce, the sliced onions, homemade pickles and the top bun. And there she is, folks! Open wide and enjoy!

Traeger'ed

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Traegered McRib Sandwich Recipe.docx (12.91 kb)

Brady Is No Chicken Cordon Bleu Fatty

Posted by mcastaneda on November 1, 2014

Brady Is No Chicken Cordon Bleu Fatty

Let's go ahead and be real right now. No one is going to read this. This is generally where I would explain the dish, maybe give a little back story on it, but after seeing this picture you're going to just scroll right on by and get started on this recipe. I can say whatever I want. Tony Romo is the best QB the NFL has ever seen. Cowboys will be undefeated this year and win the Super Bowl. People don't even really like bacon. Ok, that one was just ridiculous. Anyway, when I told the boss man I wanted to do another take on a "fatty" he just said, "Let's do it!". This man shows no fear. This is "Brady is no chicken cordon bleu fatty". 

 

Brady Is No Chicken Cordon Bleu

 

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40-50 minutes
Serves: 4-6
Recommended Pellets: Pecan, Cherry or Hickory

INGREDIENTS:
1 lb ground chicken
1 pack bacon
1/2 lb thin sliced deli ham
2 c shredded Italian cheese mix
Dash of Salt, Pepper and Oregano

PREPARATION:

Let's start by getting our ingredients assembled and turning our Traeger to the "Smoke" setting and opening the lid for 3-5 minutes. In the meantime we have a weave to create.

 

Start off by taking your bacon apart strip by strip and laying it side by side until you're around 5-6 slices deep on a cutting board or a sheet of plastic. Once you have them laid out start by pulling the odd or even strips from left to right about 1 inch it start your weave. Only do odds or evens though, this will start your weave. Once you have the bacon slices pulled back just a touch, lay a piece of bacon across the exposed slices and the gaps, then fold the bacon you originally peeled back on top of the strip you had just laid. Then its just a matter of doing the same thing, just the alternate. If you started with the odds do the evens but now that the first strip is established, instead of pulling from the left to the right, do the right to the left until you can lay another strip. It should look like this.

 

If you continue to alternate and lay strips you'll have a full out bacon weave and this is the easiest method I've found to use. Once you do it a time or two you'll become a pro.

 

That looks pretty amazing. We can go ahead and set this off to the side and we can get this fatty assembled. This would be a great time to get your Traeger set to 375 degrees. Now you can take your ground chicken (or turkey) and smash it out in a rectangle on plastic or foil.

 

Go ahead and season your chicken with a little salt, pepper and oregano. You feel free to do whatever you want, this is what I did and it was fantastic. I practically had people beating down my door to get a sample. Next we add the ham.

 

Just layer your ham around until it's pretty equally distributed around the chicken. Now we can add the cheese!

 

I used a store bought package that had mozzarella, asiago and parmesan. It was pretty much the best thing I could have imagined for this project. Now using your foil or plastic, go ahead and roll the chicken meat pile into a log. Once you have it all set together set it on your bacon weave.

 

 

This is looking too good already. Let's go ahead and roll this chicken up in the bacon and get ready to throw this on the grill.

 

You're going to want to cook your fatty for 40-50 minutes depending on the heat level on your grill. You'll notice a good amount of juice and cheese coming out when it's ready as well as it will look golden brown and delicious. Let it cook around 30 minutes then flip it over.

 

Now that we've flipped the fatty, let it cook another 10-20 minutes.

 

Brady Is No Chicken Cordon Bleu Fatty

That looks amazing. Hurry and call everyone that you know to come over so they can see you cut this sucker open. You're not going to want to miss this view.

 

Brady Is No Chicken Cordon Bleu Fatty

There you have it folks. Try not to eat this one all on your own, but hey, I'm not going to judge you. This is so good. You're not going to want to share. As always take a picture of your dishes and tag us on our social media. We love to see you cook! Find us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @traegergrills

Printable recipe: Brady Is No Chicken Cordon Bleu.docx (15.77 kb)

New Year's Smoked Pork Loin with Sauerkraut and Apples

Posted by Traeger Service on October 30, 2014

It's an old Pennsylvania Dutch tradition to cook a pork loin with sauerkraut and apples on New Years Day to bring luck in the coming year. Now, I'm not Pennsylvania Dutch by any stretch, but I'm not dumb enough to turn down slow smoked pork for any occasion. Especially when that pork is lovingly braised in a flavorful medley of sauerkraut, apples, onions, and beer.

With simple recipes like this one, the quality of the few ingredients you are using is absolutely key. We recommend using refrigerated sauerkraut (typically found by the deli counter) opposed to canned, crisp baking apples (like granny smith or honeycrisp), and a good dark ale. Every bite is a perfect medly of savory, tangy goodness that will bring luck to anybody lucky enough to be invited to your New Year's Day celebration.

 

Smoked Pork Loin with Sauerkraut and Apples

 

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour on smoke, plus
Serves: 4-6 people
Recommended Pellets: Apple, Hickory

INGREDIENTS:

1 pork loin roast (2 to 2 1/2 lbs)
1 1 lb bag of refrigerated sauerkraut
2 cooking apples (peeled, cored, and sliced)
1 sweet onion, thinly sliced
1 cup dark beer
2 tablespoons butter
2 bay leaves
1/3 cup brown sugar
Traeger Sweet Rub or salt and pepper

PREPARATION:

Start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open for 4-5 minutes to establish the fire. 

Season the pork loin on all sides with Traeger Sweet Rub or salt and pepper.

Place the roast directly on the grill grate, close the lid and smoke for 1 hour.

In a large Dutch oven or glass baking dish, layer the sauerkraut, apples, onions, brown sugar, beer, butter, and bay leaves.

Lay the smoked pork loin directly on top of the sauerkraut mixture. Top the pan with a lid or a layer of foil.

Turn the temperature of the grill up to 350 degrees and return the pan to the grill. Close the lid and roast the pork for an additional hour or until the internal temperature on an instant-read meat thermometer reads 160 degrees.

Transfer the roast to a cutting board and let it rest. Meanwhile, gently stir the sauerkraut mixture and arrange on a serving platter. Slice the pork roast and layer on the sauerkraut and apples. Serve and enjoy!

Printable Recipe:

Smoked Pork Loin with Sauerkraut and Apples.docx (14.07 kb)

Molasses & Chile Marinated Tri Tip

Posted by Traeger Service on October 29, 2014

Tri tip is a flavorful, sometimes overlooked cut taken from the bottom sirloin of the cow. In case you couldn't infer from the name, it's shaped like a triangle. Due to its tapered shape, it's perfect for that brood of folks who each like different doneness. Serve up the tip to the "medium"/"medium-well" lovers and the wider base to those "rare"/"medium-rare" peeps. Everyone is happy!

Most importantly, the tri tip is lean but tender and quite delicious, in our well-seasoned opinion.

For this take on the tri tip we decided to give it a sticky sweet marinade, slipping in some of the chile heat that we love so much. Then we finished it off with some smoke and a quick, high heat grilling to keep those juices and flavors locked in tight, where they belong.

MOLASSES & CHILE MARINATED TRI TIP

PREP TIME: 1 to 2 hours to marinate
COOK TIME: 1 hour & 10 minutes, including smoke time
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Cherry, Maple, Apple, Mesquite or Hickory
SERVES: 4

INGREDIENTS

1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup molasses
3 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoon rice vinegar
5 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
1 tablespoon peeled and chopped fresh ginger
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 lbs tri-tip roast

PREPARATION

In a large glass bowl or container, whisk together brown sugar, molasses, soy sauce, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger, chili powder, ancho chile powder, olive oil and freshly ground black pepper until the sugar is dissolved.

Place tri-tip steaks in the marinade and turn until completely coated. Let marinate for about 1 to 2 hours, covered, turning the steak over halfway through.

Start the Traeger on Smoke, lid open, for about 5 minutes or until the fire is established.

Place the steaks on the grill (do not discard the marinade) and smoke for 1 hour.

Take the tri tip off the grill and turn the heat up to High and let it preheat for about 10 minutes.

After it's preheated, dip the tri tip back into the marinade and put back on the Traeger and cook until the internal temp registers 130 degrees F, about 5 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of the tri tip.

Remove steak from the grill and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Transfer the marinade and any juices collected from the cooked steaks to a small bowl. Heat them up in the microwave until it comes to a boil and then serve with the steak.

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

Molasses Chile Tri Tip Recipe.docx (11.64 kb)

DIY Applewood Smoked Bacon

Posted by Traeger Service on October 29, 2014

Traeger family, nothing makes us more happy here at Traeger than a nice, thick slab of delicious bacon. However, when you're trying new bacon it's always a gamble (although I've never met a bacon I won't eat). I have had some that were very sweet and I've also had some that were incredibly salty, again, they were eaten with pleasure anyways. Now let me introduce you to a whole new realm of bacon goodness, the do it yourself bacon! I know some of you may be thinking already that you don't have the time or know how, but I assure you, if you've ever dry rubbed a butt (and I know you have) then you're already there. With a little know how and a LOT of self control, you can make amazing bacon at home.

Best thing about, well, let's go top three: 

1. You get to decide the flavor of your bacon!

2. You determine how thick!

3. For around $4 a lb, pork belly is a lot cheaper than buying premade bacon!

Prepare yourselves Traeger family, your world is about to change.

 

 

DIY Applewood Smoked Bacon

 

Prep Time: 10 minutes, plus 8 days to cure
Cook Time: 2-3 hours
Serves: 8-10 (or 1, if you catch my drift)
Recommended Pellets: Apple

 

INGREDIENTS 
2 lbs pork belly (skin removed)
1/2 c kosher salt 
1/2 c brown sugar
1 tbsp crushed black pepper

 

Preparation: 

Start by mixing equal parts salt and brown sugar in a bowl, then add your black pepper. I prefer crushed black pepper, when pepper is left in the peppercorn state, it holds onto its flavor better. By all means, if you already have the pre ground stuff, use it. It just won't have that punch. By now you have been to your local butcher (or Mexican meat market in my case). Best thing to do is to ask the butcher to cut you a 2 lb slab (or more if you want to make of a ton of this stuff) just make sure to ask him to remove the skin. With all of the tools and saws they work with, it'll be a much easier task for them than to do it at home, trust me...

 

Great, now that we have our pork belly out and ready to go, just take your bacon cure mix, or dry rub, whatever you want to call it, and start to cover it like a competition butt! 

 

I know what you're thinking, let's eat. Unfortunately there is still more to do. This needs to go into a plastic bag and remove as much air as possible. This will need to sit in your fridge for 8 days. I know, I know. Every 2 days you'll want to turn this over to make sure the juices go to both sides of the meat and make sure it's equally cured. After our 8 days is up, we're ready to go! Now, start your Traeger by opening your lid and placing your grill on the "Smoke" setting. Let this run for 3-5 minutes so the smoker can warm up. In that time, we can throw our belly on a rack and throw a little ice under it to help it not cook too hot.

 

When your grill is ready, place your belly on the smoker, ice and all, and let it smoke for 2-3 hours, depending on how much smoke you want and how hot your grill is running. I went with 2 hours and got beautiful results. You want your internal temperature to get around 150F. 

 

That looks good enough to eat already, but not yet. Now wrap your bacon in plastic wrap and throw it into the freezer for 30 min - 1 hour depending on your freezer. We don't want this frozen, just near that. If it's nice and firm it's a lot easier to cut. Whether you're using a knife or a meat slicer, you want this as firm as possible without it being frozen. I have a meat slicer so that's what I went with. All there is to do is determine the level of thickness you want and get to slicing.

 

NOW we're ready to dive into this delicious goodness, of course you still have to cook it, but I will guarantee you it will be fantastic and is very worth the wait! 

Bacon Buttered Jalapeno Chicken

Posted by Traeger Service on October 27, 2014

Time to face the facts. Fat is the key to keeping any bird, from guinea hen to turkey to ostrich, moist and as far from resembling a well-worn saddle as possible. And what better fat source is there than our trusty one-two punch?

Butter and bacon.

Sliding a little butter under the skin of the chicken is that oft much-needed insurance to keep those breasts from becoming dry masses clinging for dear life to the middle of your throat. And to add fuel to that tasty fire, we mixed in a few pieces of chopped bacon.

There is so much yum crammed into that fowl! Between the jalapenos, bacon and butter this chicken will certainly not be lacking in flavor or juices!

BACON BUTTERED JALAPENO CHICKEN

PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: about 1 hour
RECOMMENDED PELLETS: Hickory, Cherry or Mesquite
SERVES: 4

INGREDIENTS

1 whole chicken
2 diced jalapenos, omit seeds if you don't want it as hot
4 to 6 slices of bacon
4 tablespoons butter, softened
1 teaspoon Traeger Cajun Shake, plus more for seasoning the chicken
Traeger Sweet Rub

PREPARATIONS

Start by mixing together the softened butter, diced jalapenos, and 1 teaspoon of Traeger Cajun Shake. Dice the bacon and mix it in.

Start the Traeger on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (about 5 minutes). Preheat to High heat, lid closed, for about 15 minutes.

Take about half of the butter mixture and put it under the skin on the breast of the chicken and smear the butter around to distribute it evenly.

Season the outside with a mixture of the Cajun Shake and the Sweet Rub. (Make sure you throw a few shakes inside the cavity of the bird too.)

Put the chicken directly on the Traeger and cook for about 1 hour or until the internal temperature registers 140 degrees F. Then smear the rest of the bacon butter on the outside of the chicken and cook until it reaches 165 degrees F.

After you take that bird off the Traeger let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing it up.

PRINTABLE RECIPE:

 

Bacon Butter Chicken Recipe.docx (12.08 kb)


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