Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Taco Rubbed Burgers

I have to be honest here - I love Tex Mex.  So any time that I get to incorporate it into something else that I love - like these burgers - I'm so happy.

And instead of incorporating the spice mix into the meat, we're going to coat the patties in the spice mix like a rub.  

You might worry that it won't work to flavour the meat - but I wouldn't be sharing this with you if I didn't think so.

The first thing you're going to do is combine five spices in a bowl, whisk it all together, and dump it into a vessel of your choosing.  Something flat bottomed and large enough to hold a burger patty.

I have a functional style breading station from Pampered Chef that I like - but I thought I'd class it up and use this pretty square dish.

I's so fancy.

Now - the original recipe just says to throw salt and pepper into the meat.  But I still prefer my method of hamburger patties - so I did that instead.  I also think that it would have been delightful to fine crush up tortillas and use them in place of the breadcrumbs.

Plus then there wouldn't be any leftover tortilla chips to stuff in my face after supper.  

So make the patties and then dredge them in the spice mix.  I tried to make sure I got all around the edges as well.

Then grill and top with Monterey Jack cheese slices.

Then assemble.

You're going to want some lovely, ripe, and creamy slices of avocado - sliced as thick or thin as you desire.

Put the patty on the avocado and top with salsa.

And maybe some salsa verde too.  Definitely salsa verde.

Then tortilla chips.  Jessica recommends blue tortilla chips - but I couldn't find any.  So regular chips had to suffice.

You could crush them up if you want.

But then you could eat these without making a huge mess. 

How boring.

You could absolutely add a teaspoon of the mix into the meat mixture.  I also highly suggest using crushed up tortilla chips instead of bread crumbs in the mixture too.

Truthfully - I'm not sure what is not to like about these burgers.  The spice rub has a ton of flavor that is offset by the creamy avocado.  And then factor in the salsa - the burgers are a variety of flavours that all happen at once.

Not to mention that they aren't wildly over-complicated - so the easy factor is high here.

If you need another Tex Mex burger in your rotation - this one is an EXCELLENT choice!

Stay classy - Heather

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Strawberries and Cream Pie

There is truly no fruit quite as wonderful and precarious as the strawberry.  Here in Northern Alberta, it's difficult to get good strawberries - even when they are in season. 

But when you can get GOOD strawberries?  How do you enjoy them?  Slightly macerated and with cream?  That was how my grandpa liked them (I think).  On angel food cake with whipped cream?  How about grilled?  (we'll talk about that one later!)  How about in a pie?

What if we combined the ubiquitous strawberries and cream and pie and topped it with a delicious brown sugar streusel?

I think that would be a lovely way to enjoy strawberries!

Start by making a single pie crust.

In a large bowl, combine the flour,

Add the sugar and salt,

Add the shortening (make sure it's very cold) and cut the shortening into the flour using a pastry blender or fork,

and finally, the egg and water (make sure both of these are very cold).

Normally, when you bake, everything is supposed to be at room temperature.  However, when you make pie crust, everything needs to be ICE COLD.  I believe it has something to do with the flour absorbing the fats or liquids?  Either way - it's a well established fact that lard, water, etc should be ice cold for the best pie dough.

Using a spatula, press and fold the flour/shortening into the water and egg.  Then turn out onto a lightly floured counter and press/fold until combined.

Shape into a disc and chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours.  Then go sit on the deck or watch a movie!

Next, make the filling.

Combine the sugar and flour.

Add the eggs and combine.

Add the sour cream and the vanilla and combine.

Make the streusel.

Combine the granulated sugar and brown sugar,

Add the cinnamon.  Combine.

Add the melted butter.

Then stir in the flour.

Now - it's time to put it all together.

Roll out the pie crust and fit it into a pie plate.  Trim and flute the edges.

Add the sliced strawberries.

Pour the sour cream mixture over the strawberries.

The strawberries will kind of swim in the mixture.

Then top with the cinnamon streusel mixture.  I kind of tore it into chunks and covered the pie with it.

Then bake.  It kind of puffs up.  It actually is very cool!

Then serve.  I suggest with whipped cream!

Truth be told - I'm not an "a la mode" person.  I don't put ice cream on pie or cake.  I WILL eat it at the same time - but separately.  Ice cream in a bowl, pie or cake on a plate.  It's a texture issue. 

But if you'd like this with ice cream - you go right ahead.

This was the perfect summertime pie.  Sweet, but not cloying.  Light and fresh.  It was everything you could want on a warm summer evening.

Enjoy! - Heather

Wednesday, 30 May 2018

Dorito and Monterey Jack Cheese Stuffed Burgers

Okay.  Let's do these messy, cheesy, slightly obscene Dorito and Monterey Jack Cheese Stuffed Burgers.

So you don't REALLY need the giant bag of chips.  But you may want to snack on them after supper.  Or before.  Or during - whatever your heart desires.

Drop the chips you're not shoving in your mouth into a food processor (mini or the big one if you want).

Crush up the chips into fine crumbs - you'll need 3/4 cup - and put the crumbs into a large bowl.

Add the beef,

the egg,

salt and pepper,

Mix everything together until combined (don't overwork the meat!), then split the beef evenly into 5 portions.  Split those 5 portions in half.

Divide the shredded cheese between half of the patties, place another half on top of the cheese, and pinch to seal the cheese into the beef.

In the picture below, two of the patties on the right are stuffed.

Continue until all 5 burgers are pinched and sealed.

Cook until done.  Don't worry if the beef pulls back and the cheese inside spills out.  They'll still be delicious!

Top with more cheese, more Doritos, and mayo.

I'm not going to lie.  These are NOT the healthiest burgers on the planet, in case you were unsure.  But they ARE good for your tastebuds and your soul.  So everything evens out.

My god these were obscene.  And delicious.  And obscene.  And should totally go on your meal plan ASAP.

Did I tell you that I love putting Doritos and Tortilla chips on burgers?  I love how crunchy they make the burger!

If you're a Nacho Cheese Dorito fan, then these burgers are totally going to rock your world.

I bet you could talk your kids into eating anything if they knew it was chockfull of chips.  And that you would promise to top it with chips.

Chips are life.


Sunday, 20 May 2018

Southwest Burgers

It's TIME!  Time for BURGERS!  Which means it's summer time.  *sigh*  I'm so happy!

I started making fancy burgers a couple of years ago - and I have to say that I never get bored of doing them!

I make the buns from scratch each burger day.

I've started incorporating more fun sides rather than just fries and salad.

It makes me HAPPY!  Like summer makes me HAPPY!

I highly recommend that you take a moment and peruse the list found on my Recipe Index page.  There are some AMAZING burgers that I've made that you shouldn't miss out on.

Let's get going on these Southwest Burgers.

There aren't very many ingredients - but they all pack a punch.

First, in a large mixing bowl, combine a couple of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (chopped really well).

Then add some adobo sauce.  And grated onion.

And the onion powder.

Then the cumin.

Salt and pepper to taste.  And then the ground beef.  Then mix it together - don't over mix! - and divide and shape into four patties.  Don't overwork the meat or the burgers will be tough.

So there's no pictures here because I probably forgot or got busy or distracted by my cute niece or my brother's dog.  It happens.  Fret not.

The sauce for this burger is going to be a mix of mayo, adobo sauce, lime juice, and cilantro (which isn't present in this picture).

Combine everything in a medium bowl and store in the fridge.  This could be made earlier in the day so it has time to come together.

Cook up the burgers with Monterey Jack cheese on top.  But you could also do a cojita or queso fresco if  you wanted.

Top with the sauce.

And avocado and lettuce.

The avocado is the perfect accompaniment to the smoky flavor of the burgers.

I loved these burgers - I love the creamy avocado, the smoky meat, and the brightly flavored mayo is fantastic. 

If you like southwest tex mex - then this is the burger for you!