As if that wasn't enough to churn your stomach, we took it a few steps further and actually purchased a meat-based product (or at least that's what the label said) to review. Unfortunately, we bought and fixed this sometime in Mid February 2009, I just hadn't gotten around to actually review it. The details may be a little hazy by now.
For some reason I still find purchasing edibles from any "Value" store a bold and brave move left to those who've no other option. I have a hard time even bringing myself to put some of these products in my mouth even though I am not an excessively picky eater. When I first saw the product below I knew it would be a great item to review. I also knew that, just like any other edible product, I would not try it myself. Fortunately Becky was around and immediately agreed to try it despite its dubious appearance.
From what little I can remember and matching the logo and barely legible name on the pic I took with my phone this culinary delight was concocted by the masters at Chef's Requested Foods who boast of taking "the best raw materials, process them with skill and precision to the highest standards, and are committed to uncompromising customer service..." in addition to being "the cook's best friend." I wonder if they fetch sticks....
At first glance, looking at it through the back of the packaging, the product itself looked very appealing. Unlike many other similar products my bacon wrapped beef steak had no discernable properties that made it a pefect candidate for the Mecklenburg County Jail (trust me, I know, I've been there!).
The meat itself looked like any other regular pre-packaged ground beef and had a nice dark reddish color which I commonly see in ground meats. The bacon also looked like any run of the mill candidate from any of prepackaged name brand types. At the time I thought that as long as my filet mignon wannabe disc looked as decent when cooked as it did now I would even be willing to try it.
Then the problems started...
The second I freed my processed-carcass-and-swine meal the whole thing practically became a failed science experiment. Obviously, coming right out of the freezer my meat-disc was frozen solid but as you can see above from the picture above, the ripples created by the plastic wrapping adhering to the meat during the freezing process gave the meat a fake gelatinous look. The once reddish meat now had a nauseating browinsh color while the bacon turned a toxic yellow.
At this point I actually wondered if what I was about to pan-fry in my kitchen was once a living, breathing organism or a scientific monstrosity created in a lab. As I turned my disc around I made a startling discovery embedded dead in the center of my "meat"-disc which sent shivers down my spine...
The sign of the Beast itself!!!! the dreaded "Dubya" was staring at me with the same hell stare I catch from Barbara Streisand every time I watch Yentl! I immediately threw on my oven mitts and the standard issued Hazmat suit that came when I bought the meat and threw into the fiery pits of Hades (aka, my hot iron skillet).
Notice, the sign of the Morning Star himself is facing downwards? Coincidence you say? I think not!
After a few minutes of frying I flipped the disc over and everything seemed to be going according to plan. Except for the faint smell of sulfur and nalpm in the air. The meat and bacon were browning nicely.
After a few more minutes my once-beautiful disc-o-meat looked more like a lump of charcoal. The bacon was nearly burnt and the meat just didn't seem to cook. I sliced it open while still in the skillet only to witness the spewing of melted fat from the center of the disc.
The sight made me jump back and shriek like a little girl with a skinned knee. I retreated to a dark corner of my kitchen and curled up in a fetal position sobbing uncontrollably... then Becky came in and made fun of me. I mustered the strenght to get back up and plate the disemboweled piece of "meat" on a place for Becky to examine. The entrails of the now-pac-man-looking disc still oozing onto my plate and all!
Upon further inspeaction Becky, ever so matter-of-factly said, "just cook it longer, it still looks raw". Voila!!! And with that revelation I threw the butchered bovine back into my iron skillet.
Finally, after another 10 minutes the disc was ready for consumption... granted, not by me, but thank God Becky was there.
Now, I am a God-a'dreadin', non-practicing Catholic but fortunately I am dating the Winged Spawn of Satan herself who was more than willing to sample the charred remains of what was once, not one, but two of God's beautiful creatures.
Becky claims the "meat" wasn't all that bad; it simply tasted like un-condimented ground beef and cheap bacon. Despite several efforts she was unable to make me join her unholy allience with Chef's Request Food and Lucifer himself by trying the forsaken cow and pig remains. I guess I just have to take her word for it.
Becky rated this product 2 out of 5.