Food

The Art of Scrapple

Scrapple is a meat product of the pig variety that is typically considered a breakfast food. It’s not known in a lot of places but in Delaware, especially Sussex County, it’s not only well-known but has multiple brands. It’s also eaten in Pennsylvania but from my experience is usually cut thicker and often comes deep-fried when you get it in a restaurant. Like a lot of meats, people have their own preferences as to how they like it cooked and the thickness of the cut. Personally I don’t want it too thin because it can be like a credit card, but I don’t want it too thick and be too mushy on the inside. Just a perfect crisp on the outside and slightly soft on the inside. I like to eat scrapple just with a little maple syrup drizzled on it or in a scrapple, egg, and cheese sammich with syrup.

Scrapple, Egg, & Cheese Sammich with maple syrup

Yes, sammich. I do, in fact, know how to spell sandwich. This, however, is not a sandwich. I like a good sandwich, but a sammich is a sandwich that’s so yummy it makes you do a little happy dance when you eat it. This particular creation is my comfort food.

It’s not really a recipe, more of a how-to for people who have never cooked scrapple or that have and it never turns out right.

If scrapple isn’t the norm in your area (some areas of the east coast and Midwest, where the pigs are), you may be able to still find it but it will be in the freezer. I live in Florida and get it from Publix in the breakfast meats freezer section. I usually buy a few and take one out of the freezer a day or two before I want it and let it thaw in the fridge. Keep it nice and cold in the fridge until you’re ready to slice and cook it and it will be easiest to work with. I do NOT recommend defrosting it in the microwave, which I do with most meats since I don’t plan ahead very well. It will get crumbly and mealy and just don’t.

Ingredient List:

Per sandwich:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 slice of a melty cheese – I’m using White American Cheese
  • 2 slices of bread
  • 1 tsp – 1 tbsp Maple Syrup
  • 1 tsp – 1 tbsp butter or margarine

Preheat your griddle or pan to 350 or medium/high heat. You want your surface nice and hot before the scrapple goes on.

When scrapple is made it’s fully cooked, seasoned, then molded and cooled so it’s basically a little meat brick. I swear it’s more appetizing than that sounds. Slice it with a good, sharp knife that is large enough to make a slice straight through. You can slice it in long slices and fewer pieces or slice it on the short side into more pieces. I like more.

I find that if you hold it together as you’re slicing through it’s much easier to keep the slices fairly even as well as the slices not crumbling very much. Use your knife to transfer each slice so they have a flat surface to prevent crumbling. Be sure that the slices aren’t touching, if they are they will fuse right together! Any crumbles left on my cutting board or plate I put in a little pile and cook them, it’s my husband’s favorite part.

Be sure that the slices aren’t touching, if they are they will fuse right together! Any crumbles left on my cutting board or plate I put in a little pile and cook them, it’s my husband’s favorite part.

Place the slices evenly. If you don’t have a griddle like this then cook it in batches, don’t crowd the pan. Now for the most important part of cooking scrapple. DON’T TOUCH IT! Don’t push it, don’t try to pry it, don’t press on it with the scrapple. Forget about it for a while. This is when I get everything else together and lined up ready to go.  Once the scrapple is cooked it’s short order cook time and everything else goes fast!

Go ahead and toast your bread for all your sammiches. My husband, son, and I all like a bit of a variety on our toast, so you do you. Once it’s done I let it cool for a bit, then butter one slice per sammich.


How  long it takes depends on the size of your slices. It’s like cooking a filet of fish in a pan, if you try to move it before it’s ready it’s just going to fall apart. It will start to look a bit brown around the edges, when you can easily slide your spatula under a slice flip it over. It should look like the picture above. Flip the rest. My griddle pan isn’t the best around the edges so sometimes I need to rotate the slices or move them around. Once they’ve cooked on both sides you can move them around to finish up if needed.

Once they are a beautiful brown transfer them to a plate and set aside. I slide the plate under the griddle to keep them warm and hide them from my husband.

Turn the heat down to about 325 or 5/6. Put a little bit of butter or whatever you prefer to cook your eggs in. That red container on my stove is what my husband likes to use, bacon grease. We’ll just go with butter here. Keep in mind this is how we like our eggs, if you don’t then I would recommend making whatever kind of egg you like to eat on a sandwich

.

I cook our eggs so that the yolk is runny but the white is  thoroughly cooked. A runny white gives me the shudders. Salt and pepper the eggs, one per sammich. I flip them when they are lightly browned.

Salt and pepper the other side then put a slice of cheese on each egg then top with the buttered toast, buttered side down on the cheese and egg. By then the eggs are typically done, slide your spatula under and use your hand on the toast to flip it over on to your plate. Break each yolk and spread as evenly as possible on the egg. Top with scrapple.

You can be done and just put the toast on top and dig in or you can add maple syrup. I’ve always loved scrapple with syrup and that’s also how we’ll finish off the rest of the scrapple that didn’t go on a sammich. It was my youngest son’s idea to add syrup on the sammich and it’s definitely an improvement in my opinion. Some people like ketchup on their scrapple, if you do, feel free to use it instead of syrup.

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