Music, for me, can be as much about the people behind the songs as the songs themselves. Because of this, I've always loved interviews that share more than album details and what trashy horror film a band picked their name from. Grindcore's street-level, everyperson sensibilities make it perfectly tailored to this interest of mine, and I, like many others love when a band mentions being influenced by something I love, or simply liking to do the same things that I do.
For these reasons, I've decided to put together a feature where members of grindcore bands (and some others along the way) share their favorite recipes, to celebrate a universal, community aspect of everyone's lives that seems to get lost among hand-screened album covers and basement-painted t-shirts in the punk ethos: cooking. I'm starting the feature off with my own favorite recipe for cheesy bacon potato cakes (yeah, they've got to be terrible for you, but they make up for that by being fantastic), and you can expect some awesome recipes from actually talented people very soon.
Bacon Deluxe Potato Cakes
2 Medium potatoes
1 Cup onion, diced
3 slices uncooked bacon, sliced into 1" (2 1/2 cm) pieces
1 cup grated New York Sharp Cheddar cheese
oil for frying
Salt, pepper and other seasonings to taste
Wash and shred potatoes into hashbrown-sized strings. Carefully strain off excess liquid (yeah, you might lose some nutrients, but your potato cakes will stick together that much better). Set potatoes in a bowl and set aside.
Fry bacon in a pan or skillet, cooking until halfway done. Set aside.
Crack eggs, and separate yolks from whites in a cup, immediately depositing yolks into your potato mixture. [Feel free to add a portion of the egg whites for an eggier texture; don't add too much or your patties won't adhere properly.] Freeze your egg whites in a baggy (marked with the number of eggs and the date you froze them) for future use in a mousse or egg white omelet.
Add onion, bacon and cheese to your potato mixture. Add ground pepper, salt, dried chilies or other seasonings to taste. Using your hands, combine ingredients thoroughly.
Add about 3/4" (2 cm) of oil to a clean skillet, or enough to halfway submerge your patties. Turn your burner to around medium and begin heating up your oil.
Begin forming patties around the size of the palm of your hand, and once your oil is hot enough, start frying several of these patties. Cook each side around 2 minutes, or until each side is golden brown and fully cooked.
After each is cooked to your taste, remove to a paper towel-covered plate, and sponge off any excess grease with another paper towel. When finished, plate with spiced sour cream or Sriracha mayonnaise dipping sauce and serve.
Veganize It: This recipe can be easily made vegan by using a vegan cheese of your choice, substituting store bought fake bacon or homemade tempeh bacon for its meat counterpart, and using vegan egg replacer or vegan mayonnaise as a binding agent in the place of eggs. Vegan ranch or Sriracha mayo made with one of the many varieties of eggless, vegan mayonnaise will both work great as a dipping sauce.
Note: Different vegan cheese products melt at different times and temperatures. If you know you have a softer, quicker-melting product, consider initially leaving the cheese out, frying the first side and then removing the patties from the oil and combining the cheese with the uncooked second side before returning your patties to the pan.