Scrapple Confounds the "Chopped" Chefs as a Mystery Ingredient

Posted by Adam Gerard

April 15, 2012 at 7:00 AM

Scrapple is the Mystery Ingredient on ChoppedDo you watched the Food Network show Chopped? I don't. But about a week ago I got a few messages that I should be watching at that exact moment because the chefs on the show were cooking with scrapple!

So what the heck is Chopped and why aren't they always cooking with scrapple?

In short, Chopped is another one of those cooking competition shows. Each episode, four chefs are pitted against one another doing their best to cook a fantastic dish in 30 minutes that is created from "mystery ingredients" discovered only seconds before the clock starts ticking.

Normally the ingredients, I imagine, are chosen by some expert chef who is a show consultant. But this specific episode was a "Viewers' Choice." Fans of the show were allowed to vote on what crazy ingredients they wanted to see the challengers using.

Naturally, when the public is given a voice they make wise decisions, and that's how scrapple made it on the show. Awesome, right? The chefs did not agree.

"The ingredients were put together out of a combination of sense of humor and sort of sadism," said one chef who clearly has never truly experienced good food. Said another, "Thanks a lot viewers."

YOU'RE WELCOME! Now get cookin'!

Each round of the competition is a food course and we didn't have to wait long for the scrapple, which was part of the appetizers ingredients list:

    • Artichoke Hearts
    • Scrapple
    • Corn Nuts
    • Truffle Honey

Ewh, artichoke hearts. Gross. That must be why the chefs were so angry...

According to Michael Scotty's recap of the Viewers' Choice Chopped episode, the chefs did their best with those frustrating artichoke hearts and delicious scrapple. The judges got to taste:

    • Grilled Scrapple w/ Artichoke Gremolata
    • Grilled Scrapple Salad w/ Honey Vinaigrette
    • Honey Crusted Scrapple w/ Herb Crusted Artichoke
    • Pan Seared Scrapple w/ Grilled Radicchio Salad

"Pan seared." I'll use that in my description next time I'm introducing someone to scrapple. We'll see if it goes over better.

So what did the judges think?

No sir, they didn't like it. And according to Scotty, they complained a lot about the chef's not "transforming" the ingredients. What the eff does that mean? If I buy scrapple, I want to eat scrapple. I'm not expecting someone to come out of the kitchen 20 minutes later with the pig alive and squealing again.

But don't worry, the chefs didn't enjoy themselves either. A quote from one of the chefs that a Scrapple Facebook Fan sent me: "I've never worked with scrapple before. I find it revolting. Like a funky petrochemical." 

Makes me think I've gotta see this episode!

Unfortunatley, all they have online is a vague description of the episode, but no video yet.

But we're in luck. It will be airing again soon:

  • Apr 14, 2012
    12:00 PM ET/PT
  • Apr 17, 2012
    6:00 PM ET/PT
  • May 19, 2012
    10:00 PM ET/PT

If anyone gets their eyes on the Viewers' Choice Chopped episode featuring scrapple as the mystery ingredient, definitely let us know!


Topics: scrapple creations

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What is Scrapple?

You take the pig and make bacon, ham, pork and so on. What do you do with all the left over pig scraps? You boil 'em, chop 'em up and turn them all into a mush. That mush is combined with some pork stock and grains and then allowed to thicken into a loaf. You typically slice off about a 1/4" piece of the loaf and cook it in a pan so it's crispy on both sides. And that, my friends, is scrapple. Watch this 5-minute video presentation for a bit more scrapple detail.

This blog is a love note to scrapple.

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