We've all scrolled through social media and come across a recipe video so crazy,, we've thought, "surely no sane person would make that." Or, if you're me. "No sane person would cook that. I should cook that." This is how I ended up with a diabetes-inducing Lucky Charms cheesecake in my refrigerator for a week before I wisely tossed it into the trash..
Well, People food editor Shay Spence is clearly a child after my own heart, because he decided to take on a ridiculous food concoction of his own. After seeing a viral video making the rounds this weekend on Twitter, he documented every step of the very complicated recipe for a deep-fried, deep-dish BBQ chicken-stuffed pepperoni pizzadilla.
1. Our intrepid food pioneer
Why would Shay do this, you might ask? Because he could, I guess. And because he is a self-professed recipe truther who wanted to see just how complicated this monstrosity was and whether it was delicious or abominable. To the delight of Twitter users — whether they were intrigued or disgusted by the promised end product — he documented every step.
2. First, if you haven't yet seen the video that inspired his project, steel yourself.
Just when you think they're done, the crazy turns up another notch. First they make pulled BBQ chicken, then they sandwich it between two tortillas with a liberal amount of cheese. I was with them, honestly, until they chilled that, battered it, and deep-fried it.
But they still weren't done, reader. Then they topped each slice with pizza sauce, mozzarella, and pepperoni, and baked it. What's most astonishing about this is that a British site is behind this extremely American side show. This is honestly a fascinating but ultimately upsetting window into how foreign countries view our food habits.
3. The shopping trip
After jokingly tweeting that he might make the food abomination, Shay got thousands of likes and tweets egging him on. As he admitted on his Instagram story, he's "really susceptible to peer pressure," so before he knew it he was at the grocery store filling a basket with the ingredients he'd need for this project.
4. The total
After sharing his receipt, Shay told those following along they owed him for this, and the offers to Venmo him came rolling in. After all, this is was more entertaining than most weekend programming. Once he got home from the market, he began documenting the whole saga on his Instagram story with highlights on Twitter.
5. The cracks begin to show
Right out the gate, Shay called foul on the spice measurements, noting that his chicken looked pale and under-seasoned compared to the video's bright red BBQ rub. Nevertheless, he stuck to the letter of the recipe and popped these sad pale cutlets into the oven for an hour.
6. Sadly, he was right about the spices...
Here's what came out an hour later, after shredding. "A buncha bland-ass chicken," he remarked. Not to worry, though! He'll soon be mixing that with BBQ sauce, onions, and cheese. Oh, and 12 strips of bacon. Once the filling was done, it was time to build the quesadilla portion of the multi-step food dare. There he ran into another hiccup...
7. The portions don't seem right...
Very concerned about getting all that in there pic.twitter.com/MbBvLFjcrR— Shay Spence (@chezspence) August 26, 2019
First, his tortillas seemed too small for his springform pan, but Shay got around that "roadblock" with some aluminum foil. Second, however, was the matter of the chicken, which seemed like it might be too much for those two tortillas and that dinky pan to take on. Nevertheless he persisted, and four hours after leaving the store, the mega quesadilla was chilling in the fridge — for a full hour. "I’m still alive just waiting while it chills and watching 90 Day Fiancé," our hero updated nonchalantly at 10 p.m.
8. But wait... there's still more steps!
So it's now nearly 11 p.m. and it's on to the next stage: battering and frying. I'm tired just watching this. But he carefully cut each slice, dredged it in flour, then coated it in egg batter and breadcrumbs, but before he puts those into the oil for frying he has to chill them yet again. At this point you really have to stop and admire Shay's commitment to following the recipe to the letter, on a Sunday night, no less.
9. Shay's big mad
While he didn't keep his poise the entire time, I can't blame him for lashing out at his following. The things we do for likes. "It’s taking longer than anticipated bc you have to freeze these bastards after every step so they don’t fall apart. Thank u for staying with me on my journey, he tweeted at nearly midnight. Reader, he had several more steps left to complete.
10. Almost done?
Thankfully, he had an excellent diva-packed playlist to keep him company as he moved on to deep frying his six wedges to prepare for the pizza stage of this food hellscape.
11. Wait, are you kidding me?
Yep, that's right. He's topping those golden brown wedges with tomato sauce, mozzarella and pizza. Is it possible for a video to clog your arteries? I think I'm about to find out.
12. Finally, it's ready to try!
At nearly 1 a.m., Shay's hard work is finally done. And to be honest, it looks pretty scrumptious, It basically looks like a Chicago deep dish pizza. Who knows, maybe pepperoni pizza and BBQ chicken can compliment each other — who can really say without trying it. Well, Shay did try it, along with the ranch-style dipping sauce (made from scratch according to the original video's specifications).
13. So, how was it?
Guys... I don't think he liked it. After taking one bite of the final product, dipped in the ranch, poor Shay couldn't even bring himself to swallow it. "I expected to like it in a gross-good kind of way. But the mixture of the sweet bbq sauce, the pizza sauce and the dill sour cream," he explained. "Truly one of the most vile things I’ve ever eaten."
14. The final verdict.
Despite all that labor resulting in a basically inedible heart attack on a plate, Shay seemed to feel the journey was all worth it. I would agree. Without knowing what his follower count was before he embarked on this experiment, he stands at more than 15k on Instagram and 17K on Twitter as of this writing. He'll be pimping fit tea and waist trainers in no time!