by Blake Stilwell
We’ve been getting down to some really great food lately, from some really great viewing. I think it’s time for two things: First, a return to some quality junk food. Second, an homage to one of the dearly departed shows from last season. A lot of TV left us last season, and they ranged in quality on a scale of “Whitney” to “The Office” (which should have been put out of its misery long ago, actually).
Though I’m not as heartbroken about most of them as I was when NBC cancelled “My Name Is Earl” (WELL before it’s time and the primary reason for my grudge against Ben Silverman), I do miss 30 Rock. I didn’t love the show at first, because the first season was just not that great, in my opinion. But it got better. So much better. Comedy, when used to point out flaws in a society, is the highest form of art. This is what 30 Rock became and deserves it’s inclusion with other comedic classics, like Archie Bunker, M*A*S*H and everything George Carlin ever said, did or wrote. It should also be part of our one-stop visit to junk food, because it’s the holiday season and we’re expected to gain a few pounds. We can’t disappoint.
Season four of 30 Rock begins with a jab at the trend of unhealthy food in America. This first scene actually takes a jab at so many things that 30 Rock would come to address throughout the season, such as the perception of the “Real America.” Below is just the appearances of the Cheesy Blasters, from two different episodes.
The recipe, as mentioned by Liz Lemon, is pretty straightforward. This is good for me because my cooking means are limited until next year. It’s good for you because this cheesy delight is also pretty easy to make. (And I have to admit… they’re pretty good.) So this recipe isn’t so much as what ingredients to use, but more so how to cook them into the best Cheesy Blaster one could muster.
For the jack cheese, I went with Monterey Jack, because it’s all I could find where I am. But it was a good choice. If I were in the States, I would have gone for Pepper Jack, because I’m spicy like that. Monterey, while a little less flavorful, is still a perfect accompaniment to the beef franks.
I’m going to come right out and announce that I don’t like to boil hot dogs. I don’t eat them a lot, but when I do, I want them to at least have a little flavor (without knowing what went into them). As we all know, unless you’re adding something to the water, boiling sucks the flavor right out. This is probably why Liz Lemon uses cheese instead of water when making stew.
So I cut the (all-beef) dogs length-wise and stuffed the cheese in there, so as to cook them while melting the cheese.
Next, I cooked up a pizza. It surprised me how popular as pizza is here in the Palestinian Territory, but it was still very difficult to find a hot dog-sized one. I recommend a smaller, personal pizza in retrospect, because cutting up awkward slices of pizza to wrap around a hot dog takes more time than you want to use on this. Also, cook the pizza first and then start the hot dogs when the pizza has about five minutes left. Doing it the other way around just allows the cheese to congeal. It’s important to remember that Time is not on your side.
Once the cheese is good and melty and the hot dogs are done, take those dogs and wrap it in the pizza. You got Cheesy Blasters.
Due to the awkward nature of the pizza, I had to go for a less burrito-style and more of a taco-style wrap. Burritos are a guaranteed disaster at certain times anyway.
These are like the McGangbang, they look revolting and are definitely not something you should eat regularly, but they taste surprisingly good, and even more surprising, the texture is good as well. Definitely high-grade junk food.