Ok, it’s time to get these recipes started. . .
Every once in a blue moon, we kids would be home on a Saturday with Dad left in charge to make us lunch. I think it was often a case of Mom and Kelly at a horse show or something, so my memories of this are mostly Dad with the boys: Danny, Sean, Timmy, and Pat. (Sounds like an Irish joke: “So Danny, Sean, Timmy, and Pat walk into the bar, and . . .”) Dad made some great grilled cheeses – mostly because he used lots of butter – but his singature dish was fried bologna.
Frying bologna is a delicate, complicated endeavor. The result, of course, tastes likely slightly carmelized unfried bologna, but the slight change in texture and added smokiness does increase the fun factor considerably. The BEST thing about fried bologna, however, is the shape: If done correctly, each slice will assume the shape of a little greasey, flesh-colored sombrero. (When you’re a young boy, this is close to being the coolest thing in the world.) So, here it is:
bologna (preference for good old-fashioned Oscar Mayer – it’s got the right thickness.)
butter or light oil for the pan
If your pan is not well seasoned, then heat a small amount of butter or oil in a cast iron frying pan or on a flat griddle top. Use just enough to make the surface a little slick – bologna doesn’t require much added fat.
Fry slices on both sides over medium heat. When the surface is hot, the slices will very quickly begin to pucker in the middle to form the sombrero shape. If too hot, a dark rim will form on the bologna. That’s OK, but not really desirable. The best way to proceed is to watch the slices carefully and cook them gently.
Serve warm. They’re great by themselves, with mustard, or as part of a fried bologna sandwich. If serving as a sandwich, I recommend lightly toasted Wonder bread. Enjoy! This is definitely a recipe that needs to be handed down from dads to sons forever.