Wednesday, January 2, 2008
the bel-loc diner
Before I write anything else, I have to say that I'm really loving Scrapple. In all my years living in Baltimore, I've never disliked it, just never had the chance to eat it very often. It's hard to describe exactly what it is without turning some stomachs, but once you get over the ingredients, it's not so bad. There are far worse things out there for you, I'm sure. For someone who's grown up eating a lot of pork, Scrapple really isn't very startling. It's mostly cornmeal flavored with miscellaneous pig parts, the leftover pieces, hooves, skin, and innards, then shaped into a grayish block. How does this the go from packaging to your plate? Well, it's sliced thin, pan-fried until crisp, and served alongside eggs or on some toast, oftentimes drizzled with some maple syrup. (This has become my favorite way of ingesting this stuff.) To me, it has a strong livery taste, spiced with onions, and a slight sweetness of the cornmeal. Think of it as a blue-collar version of paté.
The most common brands you'll find in the supermarket are Esskay and Rapa (presumably most locals prefer Rapa brand). I'm partial to the original flavor, but you can also find hot and spicy, Scrapple with bacon, and beef Scrapple.
Mr. S and I both had fried eggs, over easy, with hash potatoes and toast. He ordered an additional piece of Scrapple, which was sliced to the perfect thickness and fried crisp on the outside, soft in the middle. The potatoes had pieces that were well-browned and other huge chunks that were almost like they'd been boiled, all soft and buttery in texture. We ended up being too full to order any of their homemade desserts, namely apple and blueberry pie, lemon meringue pie, and carrot cake. The cakestands were also full of large tender muffins, from Costco. (If you've ever had a Costco muffin, you know they are pretty good and huge!) Next time we go, I'll have to try one of their milkshakes, which I hear have a following of their own.
1700 E. Joppa Road
Baltimore, MD 21234