My friend Howard Lewis undertook the ambitious task of making sausage balls this past weekend. Howard is the travel agent to the stars in Beverly Hills, but of course he never talks about his clients. Howard is the embodiment of discretion in all things. He is also earnestly embracing Southern culture, of which sausage balls is a major player. I would venture to say that nobody in Beverly Hills has ever heard of a sausage ball. What a pity.
Howard relates to me that he journeys to the super market, no doubt in his jaunty bow tie and button down shirt, to acquire the exotic bulk sausage (Jimmy Dean, but that’s O.K.), grated sharp Cheddar cheese and Bisquick. He finds the first two ingredients, but the Bisquick eludes him. He asks for assistance and is told the Bisquick is in the pancake batter section.
And when he locates it, he discovers it is gluten free! That is the only kind of Bisquick this store carries. Where is the regular Bisquick that all of America loves? Apparently, all of America except Beverly Hills. So Howard takes his gluten free Bisquick home and proceeds to make sausage balls.
You have to understand the profound transformation Howard is going through. This is a man who wouldn’t eat bacon for years and just ordered a case of it from Benton’s. This is a man who writes a blog called Appetite for Excess, but who almost needs to make an appointment with a therapist after eating a sausage biscuit.
Perhaps, I am being too hard on Howard. After Terrell’s funeral, he ate an entire Southern breakfast at the Cracker Barrel and didn’t seem at all bothered by that.
But I digress. Howard e-mails me after his sausage ball making foray. He is distraught that all the Bisquick was not absorbed by the sausage. I briefly consider if gluten free Bisquick could react differently to sausage. Perhaps sausage actively repels gluten free Bisquick. I make a note to put a box of real Bisquick in the mail to Howard. I don’t want to lose any momentum here as Howard discovers the joy of pork fat.
At the end of the day all that matters, though, is that Howard was happy. He loved the sausage balls. They’re supposed to be the size of walnuts, but he got carried away and made some of them the size of golf balls. Perhaps that is why he had to take a nap at his desk after polishing off the leftovers this morning.
Next, Howard, we will tackle the quintessential Southern holiday treat, artichoke dip. It involves mayonnaise. Lots of it. I’ll be putting some Duke’s in that care package, too. Brace yourself.