Lately, as I sit up watching late-nite TV, I stop paying attention to the show itself and concentrate on the advertising to try and work out what demographics advertisers think are watching.
So far, I’ve learned that advertisers believe quite strongly that women in need of sexual aids are watching Aziz Ansari stand-up specials that air at 2AM. Tonight, I’m trying to figure out Dance Moms, which I had heretofore assumed was watched by hardcore dance fans who have suffered high-frequency hearing loss.
So far, I’ve got “older women who love chocolate and care a lot about their skin texture.” I’ll keep you up to date as I pin things down further.
Personally, I feel that more television should target the “25 to 35 year old woman who wishes she could wear yoga pants to formal occasions and loves breakfast sausage sandwiches” demographic. It’s severely underrepresented in late-nite. There aren’t even infomercials aimed at us. What we do NOT want: P90x. What we DO want: another pint of Chunky Monkey and some intravenous Benadryl. If I’m going to confuse my muscles, it’s going to be by shifting positions on the sofa.
Since the television would not tell me how to obtain a breakfast sausage sandwich, I had to make my own.
I know that some of you are probably looking at the photos and thinking that I’m not completely serious about sausage-making because I’ve purchased pre-ground pork. I know that I should grind my own, and be anal about the lean-to-fat percentage and the fineness of the grind. I also know that I’m NEVER EVER going to do that, and homemade breakfast sausage from pre-ground pork is better than Jimmy Dean.
For me, breakfast sausage should be a little sweet and maple-y, a little savory and a little spicy. I poured a bit of maple syrup into the pork and added sage, thyme, granulated garlic, onion powder, ginger, red pepper flakes and salt.
(FYI, Dance Moms fans are apparently also prone to financial mismanagement.)
(I wonder: what is the TNS demographic? Leave your best guess in the comments.)
I suppose you could let the resulting pork mixture sit to let the flavors meld, but I (1) do not plan ahead to that extent and (2) am not convinced that it makes a difference anyway. I shaped the pork into six patties – I’m all about sausage that does not require me to deal with intestine – and fried them up. I also threw together some buttermilk biscuits and jerry-rigged a system to cook up eggs the same size and shape as my biscuits.*
A more diligent sausage-maker (sausagiere?) would have cooked a mini-patty of the pork mixture to test out the seasoning and adjust the raw mix if needed. If you’ve been reading me for more than seventeen seconds, I assume you know that I didn’t do that.
*If you want to know: Cast iron skillet on the stove. One-cup stainless steel measuring cup in the skillet. Beaten egg in the measuring cup. Voila!
Damn, I love sausage, egg and cheese on a biscuit. The sausage was juicy, nicely caramelized on the outside and hit all the right flavor notes. (If anything, it was a little too spicy for me as a breakfast item. Brian loved it though, so the recipe gives a range for the red pepper flakes.) Possibly I ate two of these sandwiches and felt a little overfull, but I am not ashamed of my decision.
In conclusion, Dance Moms is a terrible show full of awful people, even worse that Cupcake Wars or Chopped. Long live sausage breakfast sandwiches.
(If you would be so kind: could you throw TNS a vote over at Apartment Therapy’s Homie awards? A quick registration, and then your vote could help propel TNS past “beloved by dozens” to “beloved by a full gross.”)
(Also, for those who care: I’ve quit the painkillers completely because the lack of sleep was melting my brain. Slowly, slowly returning to a normal sleep schedule; powering through the pain.)
1 lb. ground pork
1/4 c. real maple syrup (I like grade B)
2 tsp. rubbed sage
1/4 – 1 tsp. crushed red pepper, depending on your heat tolerance
1 tsp. dried, crushed thyme
1 tsp, kosher salt
1/2 tsp. granulated garlic
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
Put everything in a bowl and mix it up good.
Shape into six patties of equal size.
Cook. (You might do this by putting a bit of veg oil in a saute pan over medium heat and cooking the patties for 5-7 minutes per side, being watchful of the heat so the sugars in the syrup don’t burn.)
Many thanks for the homemade sausage recipe ; the recipe and the pictures look wonderful. I think the Dance Moms are all strange, either to put their kids through that, or to NOT get out considering the insults that flow. Ballet class was terrible enough when I was 7 or 8, without tv, competition, on mothers who argued. Voted? yes.
Come for the food, stay for the snark.
Actually, I think I was more, come for the Top Chef snark, stay for the food snark.
Ok, FINE, I’m really only here for the sausage porn.
(And now your google search hits will probably get even weirder. You’re welcome.)
(So, more precisely, the demographic would be sarcastic people who like food and pictures of food and need sleep. And also really need a sausage, egg, and cheese biscuit right now.)
40+ southern men who like to hear a cussin’ crazy yankee accurately describe in words and pictures the joys and tribulations of cooking in the real world.
Bonus points for intending to open a BBQ restaurant in the south, visiting the outer banks, and makin’ yer own breakfast sausage in patties.
High five for Grade B maple syrup love! It’s all there is as far as I’m concerned.
I’m a little sad to say it, but I even prefer it over the bourbon barrel aged maple syrup I’ve had so far. Likely because the base syrup was grade A… It’s just too thin for my tastes. When I want some maple syrup, I want some fuckin’ maple syrup.
32 year old original Ohioan who’s lived in New York for almost ten years. Personally, I’m here for the sausage. And the balsamic vinegar strawberries.
My demographic: Over-35 year old, who needs p90X to fix her ever-sagging ass, who loves Dance Moms in a weird twisted way because she envies the ways those incredibly talented kids can move their bodies when she herself struggles through beginner jazz and tap class but hates the mothers themselves with a passion, who takes no issue with people who make their own sausage from pre-ground pork, and whose diet plan sadly, tragically, does not include sausage and egg biscuits. Also the demographic that generally avoid late-night TV because it’s not very helpful for insomnia (at least that’s what the insomnia experts always say -flickering lights and all that).
You had me at maple-y.
I just purchased and ate a breakfast sandwich at our local eatery called Ye Olde Student Union, and I have to tell you, it was not nearly as delicious as yours. But it was good, none-the-less.
So you just put the stainless steel measuring right onto the stovetop? Could you, like, use a cookie cutter? Like a stainless steel cookie cutter shaped like Laura Ingalls Wilder?
@melissa, i’ve tried cookie cutters, but the egg always leaks out and makes a mess. the measuring cup was too small to sit right on the stove, hence the cast-iron pan as heat mediator.
Great idea for the egg! I’ve been using a tuna can with both ends removed, whisking the egg while holding the can down tight to the pan with one of those “ove-gloves” — but no matter how firm of a death grip I use it still leaks a bit.
@heather, thank brian for the idea. he’s not only a rocket scientist, he’s an egg scientist!
Also, my demographic is 41 yr old sarcastic punker with a penchant for Cure Tshirts and crock pot beef recipes. Errrr…….wow I’m pathetic.
I will save this recipe, I love a spicy sausage!
Dance Moms – they don’t get paid if they don’t bring out their most shitty selves. Like a train wreck, almost can’t turn away… but there is always Hoarders to drag me in.
My demographic – 50 something beer drinking watcher of crappy tv before bedtime.
Mmmmmmmmm maple. My fiance is Canadian and sometimes I could swear he smells like maple syrup.
Demographic: 60 yo, female, loves to cook, but don’t cook as much as i like, or used to cook. Married, have 2 dogs, none of whom are picky about eating anything. Here because i like you attitude in cooking AND writing.
@ everything, thanks for providing such detailed demographic information. i’ll be sure to pass it on to my advertising team so we can target the pop-up ads i plan to implement. don’t worry, i’m sure they’ll enhance the user experience.
50-something who aspires to semi-gourmet chefdom from time to time, when not making mac-and-cheese and burgers for the teenaged son. And who appreciates red wine and snark equally, but your snark more than most.
I was going to say your demographic was people who like delicious food and painkillers, but you just ruined that. I guess I will say food and snark like another person commented 🙂
Since I watch “Let’s Make a Deal” at the gym, I’m apparently dying from my NuVa ring but newly liberated by my scooter (covered by medicare!). Hopefully those nice trial lawyers can get me a settlement so I can buy some air freshener. Which I won’t need since I found your blog via the kitchn. Sorry to say I’ll be hanging around from now on. I don’t get out much.
@sharon, welcome! glad you dig it here and look forward to your comments. so, when you’re at the gym, do you just put your hoveround right on the treadmill?
Demographic data point: Mid-twenties liberal and engineer with severe food restrictions (and severe laziness about finding substitutions) who reads this blog for the food porn she can’t consume herself and for the cussing she can’t say (aloud) in her too-conservative community.
Love food but can’t take it too seriously.
also an engineer (weather satellite systems)
and although I love your text, I saw the pictures first, and think they must be part of why I come back.
and awesome shit that I want Monday is always dead on.
Sorry I’m a vego … sausages are not my thing!
Are you the Michelle who is facilitating our comments course?
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