Category Archives: Wisconsin

Nueske’s Ham Steak – Product Review

It wasn’t too long ago that Nueske’s had mentioned on Facebook that they had been trying new jerky and that prompted me to ask them if they were interested in my doing a product review. They immediately reacted and showed me a bunch of love and sent me not only the steak strips, but products I’ve never seen or tried. These included their bacon cheddar brats (which were awesome), along with some excellent bacon, and then their ham steaks. I’ve never seen the ham steak so I was very curious on how it was going to taste.  The ham steak by itself, warmed in the oven, was excellent. It was perfectly smoked and extremely addicting, and with that said I figured I would try grilling the next one, and lathering it in barbecue sauce.

Grilled Nueske's Ham Steak with Barbecue Sauce

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 1 whole Nueske’s Ham Steak
  • 1 cup of your favorite barbecue sauce

Start by heating your coals. You can do this on a gas grill if you prefer, but it has been so long since I last used my gas grill. Once the coals are heated, add to the outer, inside ring of your grill as we will cook the Nueske’s ham steak over indirect heat, and then lightly oil your clean grill grate.

Nueske's Ham Steak - Product Review

Place the ham steak on the grill over indirect heat, and cover. Cook for about 5 minutes per side, and then start brushing on your favorite barbecue sauce. Cover, and cook another few minutes, then turn the ham steak over and lather more barbecue sauce on that side. Cover, and repeat until you are out of sauce.

The end result is nothing short of amazing, and everything I would expect from Nueske’s. The ham steak got some nice grill marks, and embedded some of that barbecue sauce into it that just made it even better.

I know I show all the love for Nueske’s and there is good reason for that as I haven’t found a better smoked product then theirs. If you are looking to try any of their products, you can find them online.

Nueske’s Bacon Cheddar Bratwurst – Product Review

A few years back, my colleagues and I decided to go to the Milwaukee Brewers game and do some tailgating. The theme of the tailgate was to really have a blind brat tasting contest. Yes, we Wisconsinites love our brats. We had an array of brats from local butchers to the ring leaders such as Johnsonville and Klements. Johnsonville brats came out the winner, but recently there is a new winner in town. Nueske’s bacon cheddar bratwurst.  I have always been a fan of their products and hands down they have some of the best bacon out there. I was fortunate to get the love from Nueske’s and they sent me a care package if you will. It was loaded with products I have never seen in our local stores. Products such as ham, beef sticks, and their smoked sausage. I was excited to say the least to try everything.

Nueske's Bacon Cheddar Bratwurst - Product Review

The brats themselves look awesome. The package consisted of 5 brats, fully cooked and ready to heat and serve.

I decided to heat mine on the grill. After I got the coals going, I placed the brats on the grill, and cooked them a bit low and slow as I did not want to burst the casing with higher heat. Once cooked, I plated them. I was excited (I know I live a boring life) to say the least, and my wife who does not typically like some textures of brats decided to have one as well.

Nueske's Bacon Cheddar Bratwurst

I served mine on a bun with a light coating of yellow mustard, and some chopped shallots on top.

First bite, was just this awesome taste. I loved the casing. It has this great snap to it, almost like you would get with a great weiner, and then the flavor of bacon and cheese just took this bratwurst over the top. My wife was in total agreement. I wanted another, but decided to hold back and save some for my kids. The following day, my sausage loving kid dug in, and was just was thrilled by the taste of these brats as well.

So a note to my local supermarkets, put these in stock. They are probably the best brats I’ve had to this date, and I’m not saying that because I love Nueske’s. I’m saying that because it is the truth. Head on over to Nueske’s and try them for yourself. I know you will not be disappointed by any of their products.

Habanero Cheddar Brat Pizza

If you have never been to Wisconsin, you should. I know that sounds selfish and everything, but Wisconsin is so awesome for about 5 months out of the year. I say that from an outsiders viewpoint, but being from Wisconsin, it is fairly OK, the remaining 7 months if you can survive the cold and often times harsh winter months. But during the summer months, grilling brats are a big deal. I’ve known people to say ‘I ate so many brats this past weekend that I can’t even think of eating another brat’. Brats as we know them, or bratwurst are a big deal when it comes to grilling in the summer months, and it is almost as stereotypical as it is the cheese curd or beer association for this state, and we are all OK with that. With that said, I’ll admit, I love the bratwurst. A few establishments around the city are twisting up versions of brats whether that be Philly cheesesteak brats, or chicken and feta brats. There is one brat that I totally love, and that is the habanero and cheddar brat. When grilled, it has the perfect heat, and with that said, I decided to slice a couple of them up and top them on a pizza. It was freaking killer.

Habanero and Cheddar Brat Pizza

Now if you cannot find a habanero cheddar brat, try and find a jalapeño and cheddar brat as they are equally as good, but the habanero packs in a bit more heat, with I love.

Let’s get started.

  • 1 habanero cheddar brat, grilled and sliced into 1 inch rounds
  • Your favorite pizza dough, about 14 inches in shape
  • 1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup of shredded cheddar jack cheese
  • 1/4 cup onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup pizza sauce

I’ve been playing around with pizza dough for some time now. It feels like years, trust me, it does. I think I’ve found my go to pizza dough now as I have been using my Kettle Pizza, and my pizzas are turning out fairly well. They still need work, but I’m coming close to a great dough. Regardless, use or make your favorite pizza dough.

If you do not have a Kettle Pizza, preheat your oven to 500 degrees with a pizza stone inside.

Toss and shape your pizza dough, then add the pizza sauce, just a thin amount. If you want more sauce, go for it. Top with the cheeses, and the sliced brats. Shower the top with the sliced onions.

Add the pizza to the preheated stone. I used a pizza wheel for this, lightly coated with semolina or fine cornmeal so it slides right onto the stone.

How to make a Habanero Cheddar Brat Pizza

Cook in the oven for about 15-20 minutes or until the crust is nice and cooked, and the cheese is nicely melted. If you are using a Kettle Pizza, well that is done in about 5 minutes (hence why I love that thing).

Slice and serve.

The result is everything you love in a pizza. Heck, I could even just go with the cheese and onion pizza, but the addition of the habanero cheddar brat just set this thing over the top. You think it might be a regular Italian sausage until you get that great heat from the habanero. It’s not too hot in heat, it’s just perfect and makes this pizza possibly one of my favorites.

 

If you are looking for something different to put on your pizza, give this one a shot. It’s a winner in my book. Hope you enjoy, and hope you give the brats a try, especially when visiting Wisconsin!

Soda Fountain® Malted Milk Powder – Product Review

I’m always open to trying out new products and giving my honest opinion. I think it is helpful to all of you, as well as the product provider. It was not long ago when I was approached to try a product from CTL Foods, Inc. based out of Colfax, Wisconsin. I was all for trying their Soda Fountain® Malted Milk Powder, and granted they are not local in the sense, however four hours north of me, so even more excited to try another Wisconsin product.

Soda Fountain Malted Milk Powder

I was sent 2 pounds of their malted milk powder, which was based on all natural ingredients. A cute product shot of some classic kids sharing a malt was on the front of their label, which immediately reminded me of a great classic malt. Now if you have never been from Wisconsin, we are known for a few things, and custard is one of them. Custard like you will not find anywhere else in the country, and this season is ice cream, and custard season in my house. My kids pretty much have it for dessert a few times a week, so this was a great time to have them taste what a classic malt tastes like.

Malted Milkshake using Soda Fountain Malted Milk Powder

One of my lucky kids got my good old mustache drinking class, actually it was my daughter, just to add a bit more fun into the mix.

The recipe calls for the following, of which I stuck to, however you can get as creative as you want as noted on their label.

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 scoops of any flavor ice cream (I used vanilla)
  • 3/4 cup of cold milk
  • 2 heaping tbsp of Soda Fountain® Malted Milk Powder

Start by adding everything to a blender, and blend until thick and smooth.

How to make a Malt

I made one for each of my kids and got their reactions. It took them a while to react because they sat there slurping and spooning the delicious malt for about 5 minutes, rarely coming up for air.

Their result was a two thumbs up. It was really their first malt (I think) they have ever tried, and they fell in love. Something they will continue to drink whether summer, fall, winter, or spring. If you are looking for a great malt product, give this a shot. Their products are sold online at http://www.ctlfoods.com/malted-milk-powder/.

For one lucky, and random winner, I have a 1 pound Soda Fountain® Malted Milk Powder to give away. Send me an email to daxphillips@gmail.com no later than August 24, 2014. I will then provide a random drawing and get one shipped out to you.