Classic Cheeseburger

I’ve had a cheeseburger on the brain for a while now, it’s just something that i can’t get out of the system until i have one. For most people, and even in the past myself; to satisfy that cheeseburger craving you’d just hit McDonalds. Not tonight though.

I’ve been reading about what goes into the patty, what’s the best cheese to use, how to construct the burger. There are plenty of opinions and i’m going to have to subdue my own as well to keep to the rules that best allow me to say, ‘classic cheeseburger’. ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s actually been a lot of fun reading random articles with the comments that follow, studying pictures on Google images. I’m now educated on cheeseburgers.

This is the basic structure on how to build a classic cheeseburger which i’ve stolen from here, it’s actually a good read and the comments are also worth looking at.

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Firstly with the patty; the simplest method and most common is do not add anything to your mince other than salt and pepper. I shaped my patty gently, not working the meat too hard into a round and cleaned up the edges with my thumb. A light seasoning of salt and pepper after you’ve formed the patty, you season the other side when you flip your meat.

I’ve made some BBQ sauces recently but keeping to the objective i’ve stuck with the classic ketchup. Fortunately i can use my home made pickles though ๐Ÿ™‚

What cheese to use is another hot topic, i had some edam on hand so decided to use that, it melts well and that’s what you want here. Next time i’m going to try a Gruyere.ย IMG_9859

All the salad and condiments ready. I didn’t believe mayo was part of the classic cheeseburger so left it out.

I wanted to do a side dish for this and onion rings had also been a recent craving for me so cooked up a batch. Very messy and quite fiddly, at times i was wondering why i decided to do it. But in the end it was worth it , they were brilliant and the perfect accompaniment to my burger ๐Ÿ™‚

Onion rings

The meat should be flame grilled in my opinion, it just adds that smokiness, ย colour and char that a pan cannot give. Although i used the skillet it’s still not authentic enough, next time ๐Ÿ™‚

Arrange your burger as per template and you have a mouth watering meal to dive into.

All the work and research payed off.
All the work and research payed off.

 

Texas Tailgate Burger

Ange is out for the night and you know what that means? Burger time! When you’re cooking for two you’ve go to cater for the other person, you can’t simply cook everything you want, you have to take into consideration what they enjoy too. I don’t have to worry about that tonight haha ๐Ÿ˜‰

I have a folder of recipes which i print out, it’s another sort of addiction, print.. print..print… I have a tonne of burger recipes. This recipe was the first one in my folder, one of many. I kept skipping past it not even bothering to read it….finally i did…. hmmmm…. wow… this looks great. I’ve made my own pickles, my own BBQ sauce, i know where i can get these Kettle BBQ chips, let’s get the ground chuck, i have salad, sorry, was getting carried away there in my semi-9:37pm-drunken stupor ๐Ÿ™‚

So many elements of this burger poked me in the eye with excitement. Let’s start off with the burger pattie itself. Ground chuck, with finely chopped pickled jalapeno, chilli powder, salt and pepper. Nice, that’s my kind of pattie.

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Makes 2 large patties or 3 smaller ๐Ÿ˜‰

1pound, 400g ground chuck. I asked the butcher to ground the chuck up for me and he said that the beef mince they use was in fact chuck, so just mention it. It was like $5 for that.

2 tbs finely chopped pickled jalapenos.

1/2 tsp each of kosher salt, ground black pepper and chilli powder.

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Mix gently and form into patties.
Mix gently and form into patties.

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I’d never seen a BBQ sauce applied this way. Finely grated smoked cheddar, your favourite BBQ sauce and some diced brown onion mixed together and left at room temperature. This will be slathered on your burger pattie half way through cooking.

Cheesy, onion BBQ sauce, snnnn.
Cheesy, onion, BBQ sauce, snnnn.

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3/4 cup BBQ sauce.

1 cup finely grated smoked cheddar.

1/4 diced brown onion.

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Meanwhile we had a massive storm, ahhhh....
Meanwhile we had a massive storm, ahhhh….
Home made, i love it :)
Home made, i love it ๐Ÿ™‚

I made these pickles a couple of months ago, specifically for a burger when needed. I also made a couple of BBQ sauces. I have been meaning to post them on here but i wanted some labels to put onto the bottle to add some ‘coolness’ hah. Anyway, regardless, they both came in handy tonight and that’s why i made them ๐Ÿ™‚ The pickles were so sweet and crunchy, very impressed!

The thought process is much longer than the cooking process. I spent more time thinking about it than eating it, probably no surprise to most. ย I enjoy thinking about food, reading, watching food programs, once you start eating, it’s all down hill, you get full, possible disappointment, whatever ย In my case here, it was, ‘i want another burger’, but i know it will ride me off. Oh well, it was a quick climax and then a long downer, that’s how good it was. Is that a bad thing? hehehehe ๐Ÿ˜‰

There’s endless possibilities with burgers and that’s so exciting. I wonder what’s next? It could very well be this one, it was sensational.

Its bark is worse than its bite :)
Its bark is worse than its bite ๐Ÿ™‚

This really should be done on the BBQ, that’s the inspiration to make this burger again. It’s a bit extreme to get the BBQ heated up, (all those coals) for one person. Am i justifying my laziness??

This is the original – Texas Tailgate Burgerย recipe.

I still don’t understand the Texas Tailgating thing though ๐Ÿ™‚

Buffalo wings with blue cheese sauce.

I’d been collecting all sorts of wings, fried chicken, etc recipes and said to Ange ‘feel like something like that?’, and she said ‘how about Buffalo wings?’. We hadn’t had them in so long and i thought ‘why not!’. After eating them i do not know why it’s been so long. OMG, they are so good!

It really isn’t an expensive dish to make, wings are cheap as, make sure you get good quality ones. If you have some of the other staples, the blue cheese will end up being your most costly purchase. Chop the wings up into 3 pieces, they say discard the wing tip, but i think it’s the best part, if cooked correctly you can eat the entire wing!

Unloading all the goods from the fridge and pantry.
Unloading all the goods from the fridge and pantry.

You can use whatever blue cheese matches your pallet, from a white castello for mild, Italian Gorgonzola dolce for medium or for my first time, i used a strong French Roquefort. Tingle tingle!

French Roquefort.
French Roquefort.

You can make your blue cheese dip beforehand, keep chilled in the fridge. Bring it out 15mins before serving so it comes to room temperature.

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3 tablespoons blue cheese, rind removed, at room temperature.

1/4 cup mayonnaise.

1/4 cup sour cream.

1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice.

1 small shallot/scallion, trimmed, white part minced, green parts finely chopped.

Course salt and freshly ground black pepper.

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In a nonreactive mixing bowl, mash to a paste the blue cheese, gradually stir in the mayonnaise, sour cream, lemon juice and the minced white shallot. Season slightly with salt and pepper.

Transfer dip to serving bowl and garnish with the chopped green shallot.

Serves 2 (with leftovers)

 

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For the wings –

12 chicken wings cut into 3 pieces each.

1/2 tablespoon of vegetable oil.

1/2 teaspoon salt.

1/2 cup flour.

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In a bowl toss the wings with the oil, and salt. Place into a large plastic shopping bag, and add the flour. Shake to coat evenly. Remove wings from the bag, shaking off excess flour, and spread out evenly on lightly oiledย baking paper-lined baking trays. Do not crowd. Bake for about 20 minutes, turn the wings over, and cook another 20 minutes, or until the wings are cooked through and browned. Rotate pans, change the shelves of the trays so pieces cook evenly. Important to keep an eye on them so pieces don’t burn and others aren’t under cooked.

Serves 2 (with leftovers, depending on how hungry you are!)

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Meanwhile, get your sauce going.

3 musketeers
3 musketeers

3/4 tablespoon of white vinegar.

1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.

1/8 teaspoon of garlic powder.

1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce.

1 teaspoon of Tabasco sauce.

1/4 teaspoon salt.

3 tablespoon of Louisiana hot sauce.

3 tablespoons of unsalted butter.

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Mix all the ingredients for the sauce in a pan, and over low heat bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, and then turn off.

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Ange's setting the table and the mood :)
Ange’s setting the table and the mood ๐Ÿ™‚

After the wings are cooked, transfer to a large mixing bowl. Pour the sauce over the hot wings and toss with a spoon or spatula to completely coat.

The smell........ ugh.....
The smell…….. ugh…..
The time to feast is upon us!
The time to feast is upon us!

Serve with blue cheese dip and celery sticks.

Shortly after this photo the phone/camera was slung across the room and like a wild beast i hoed into some wings! The second serving was even better, as the wings cooled the sauce thickened, so another toss to coat and i had to find more room in my belly.

Thanks to this link for the original recipe.

Buffalo chicken wings

 

 

 

Texas double cheese burger with Old Bay triple chilli cheese fries.

Ange is out tonight so i automatically think ‘burger’! I’ve also had cheesy fries on my brain for quite a while, think tonight we’ll combine the two ๐Ÿ™‚

Getting the fries ready. Thinly cut, i blanched them for a couple of minutes in boiling, salted water, not wanting them to fall apart, done. Tossed gently with some olive oil and Old Bay seasoning and then placed on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Placed in a preheated oven at 180degC for about 20minutes.

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While the chips are cooking get the slaw ready. Grate some carrot, thinly chop some onion and shred some cabbage, i also added some parsley. Whisk up 1/2 cup mayonnaise, 1 1/2 tbs of cider vinegar, 1 tbs caster sugar. Add this to the vegetables and toss to coat adding some salt and pepper, set aside to soften for like 25mins. This slaw is amazing, so easy and quick to whip up.

Go to slaw, perfect for burgers.
Go to slaw, perfect for burgers.

My triple chilli combo – sliced pickled jalapeno, chopped red chilli and salted Chinese capsicums. You can just substitute anything you want really.

Mmmmm, chillllly...
Mmmmm, chillllly…

Two slices of vintage cheddar for the burger, cooked chopped bacon for the fries. Also extra cheddar to grate over the fries.

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It’s all pretty hectic now and timing is essential! Oil and season your patties and cook them on a high heat until nice and brown, brush with some good quality American BBQ sauce and caramalise. Place halved buns under grill to brown and spread one side with extra BBQ sauce.

View from the chopper.
View from the chopper.

Stack the burger patties alternatively with the cheese. Pile on slaw with sliced dill pickles. Spoon on the chilli fries and dig in. I had the lights on for these pics, afterwards the lights went off, i knelt in front of the coffee table and was just in awe of this; the fries were unbelievable, i think i’ll just make a big batch of those next time and eat them on their own. The burger was exceptionable. Bit too big though haha, eyes bigger than belly ๐Ÿ™‚

I think i’ve opened a bag of worms with chilli/cheese friesย ย The possibilities are endless.

The first of many.
The first of many.

friesrec copy

bug

 

Beer Can Chicken

I haven’t done a beer can chicken for quite a while now and we had a chicken sitting in the freezer so what better way to put it to use than to stick a beer can up its rear and roast it ๐Ÿ™‚

This is where we start :)
This is where we start ๐Ÿ™‚

Next we need to prepare the spice mix to rub over the chicken.

1/4 cup of brown sugar, sea salt and paprika, ( i used hot paprika) and then finally 2tbs of freshly ground black pepper. This makes quite a bit and you will have heaps left over but if it’s stored correctly it will last 6 months.

I couldn't help but dip my finger in several times to taste it.
I couldn’t help but dip my finger in several times to taste it.

Prepare the chicken by cleaning out the cavity, cutting the skin around the neck and rear end and then patting dry inside and out. Sprinkle some spice mix inside the chicken, pour over 2tsp of vegetable oil and rub 1tbs of spice mix into the bird, (i used a bit more). Drink half of the beer in a speedy fashion then add 1tsp of the spice mix to the can and then place the chicken onto the can.

hehe, funny huh :)
hehe, funny huh ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m also doing two types of potatoes; one wrapped in a few layers of foil with some butter, salt, pepper and garlic powder placed over the coals on the BBQ and the second batch roasted in some duck fat in the oven. I par boiled the potatoes before roasting.

We got these 'emma' potatoes from the markets the other day.
We got these ’emma’ potatoes from the markets the other day.

Angela demanded we have greens, ย kale we bought on the weekend with some broad beans and peas. I blanched each one up separately and i will put them all in the fry pan with some extra virgin olive oil at the end to warm them up. We also got some corn and i am going to roast that over the coals just before serving with some of the best butter i’ve ever tasted.

Greenery.
Greenery.
As green as it gets.
As green as it gets.

I cooked the chicken for a bit over an hour, turning it a couple times so it didn’t burn on one side. Looking pretty yummy i reckon ๐Ÿ™‚

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How good do the roast potatoes cooked in duck fat look? ๐Ÿ™‚

So crispy and fluffy in the middle.
So crispy and fluffy in the middle.

I put myself under the hammer with this meal, luckily Angela helped me out here and there, way too many dishes but when i get started it’s hard to stop haha. Anyway, the whole dish was amazing. I really pigged out. Angela bought some fresh bread rolls. Opened mine up, spread some butter on it, put on some chicken breast meat, some of the vegetables and also some of the potato roasted on the BBQ and had a stunning sandwich.

Leftovers today, WOOHOO!

Very scenic :)
Very scenic ๐Ÿ™‚
Time to dig in :)
Time to dig in ๐Ÿ™‚

Something a little simpler tonight, pasta ๐Ÿ™‚