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Rad

30 May

Oh Radish, why so angry? Why are you making your face so red by screaming at the top of your lungs? You’re so spicy for a spring veg. You just got here.
These little guys lend their peppery bite to yogurt for souvlaki or tandoori skewers.

RADISH SAUCE

1/2 cup (125 ml) yogurt
1/3 cup (75 ml) mayonnaise
1/4 cup (50 ml) shredded or chopped radishes
1 tbsp (15 ml) chopped fresh cilantro or dill
garlic
1/4 tsp (1 ml) freshly ground pepper
1/4 tsp (1 ml) salt

Combine all ingredients. Cover and refrigerate up to 1 hour. Yield: 1 cup (250 ml).
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Tandoori Chicken With Radish Sauce Bamboo Skewers

1/2 cup (125 ml) yogurt
1/4 cup (50 ml) fresh lemon juice
1 tsp (5 ml) paprika
1 tsp (5 ml) turmeric
1/2 tsp (2 ml) ginger
1/2 tsp (2 ml) coriander
1/2 tsp (2 ml) cumin
1/4 tsp (1 ml) cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp (1 ml) salt
2 cloves garlic, crushed
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 in. (2.5 cm) pieces

Soak bamboo skewers in hot water for 30 minutes. To prepare marinade, combine next 10 ingredients (yogurt through garlic) in a heavy zip-lock plastic bag. Add chicken and squeeze bag to coat chicken with marinade; seal bag. Let stand 30 minutes. Remove chicken from marinade and thread onto soaked skewers; discard marinade. Grill chicken skewers over medium heat on natural gas barbecue, turning occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Serve with radish sauce. Serves 4 to 6.
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MINTY RADISH TZATZIKI SAUCE

3/4 cup (175 mL) plain yogurt
1/4 cup (50 mL) sour cream
1-2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tbsp (25 mL) chopped fresh mint
1 tbsp (15 mL) lemon juice
1 cup (250 mL) coarsely grated red radish (about 5-6 medium radishes), squeezed of excess moisture
Salt and white pepper to taste

Place the first 5 ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine. Mix in the radish, salt and pepper. Cover and store in the fridge until needed. Can be readied several hours in advance.

Makes 2 cups.

Lazing on the lanai

10 May

Truly this is the last of the Lilly-obsessed inspired posts.
We can’t stop longing for loungetime on the lanai with these fresh-tasting, yummy bites.

GRILLED SHRIMP AND PINEAPPLE SKEWERS
Recipe from “Essentially Lilly: A Guide to Colorful Holidays,” by Lilly Pulitzer and Jay Mulvaney.
Use mango in place of the pineapple, if you like.

20 12-inch soaked bamboo skewers
1 cup (loosely packed) fresh basil leaves
1 cup orange juice
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup chopped fresh ginger
60 large shrimp, deveined, tails left intact
1 fresh pineapple, peeled, cored, cut into 60 chunks
Soak bamboo skewers in pan of water until ready to use.

Finely chop basil; set aside half of basil to sprinkle over skewers after grilling. Place remaining half of basil in large bowl. Add orange juice, oil and ginger; whisk well. Add shrimp to marinade and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 and up to 4 hours.

Remove shrimp from marinade and thread onto skewers, alternating with pineapple chunks, for a total of 3 shrimp and 3 pineapple chunks on each skewer.

Prepare grill (medium high heat). Grill skewers until shrimp are opaque and brown in spots, turning once, about 3 minutes per side. Sprinkle with reserved basil and serve. Makes 10 servings.

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BEER AND LIME MARINATED FLANK STEAK
Skirt steak would also work well with this marinade.

2 cups light Mexican beer (such as Corona)
2 cups (loosely packed) fresh cilantro leaves
1 cup fresh lime juice
1 cup vegetable oil
6 cloves garlic
4 pounds flank steaks
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Process beer, cilantro, lime juice, oil and garlic in food processor until ingredients are finely chopped. Place steaks in large resealable plastic bags. Divide marinade between bags. Seal and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 8 hours.

Prepare grill (medium high heat). Remove steaks from marinade and place on grill; sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper. Grill to desired doneness, turning once, about 6 minutes per side. Transfer to cutting board. Slice steak diagonally across the grain and serve. Serves 10.

Turkey talk

6 May

Oh, Internets. You know how obsessive we are when it comes to pairing food with dreamy destinations. If we can’t afford to jet away to some exotic locale right this minute, surely we can transport ourselves to a happy place with a little bit of delish. Can we help it if the sight of honeydew melon balls paired with pink grapefruit, freshly torn mint, honey and lime makes us think of Lilly Pulitzer sundresses and Palm Beach?

We’d like to pair that preppy fruit salad with this luscious turkey burger:

Oprah found a new favorite food when she tried this turkey burger at Mar-a-Lago, Donald Trump’s private club in Palm Beach. “I believe [it] may be the best turkey burger in the entire world,” she says. The Mar-a-Lago Turkey Burger will be permanently available at the Trump Bar and Grille in Trump Tower in New York City, open to the public for lunch and dinner. It will also be served during lunch in Chicago at Sixteen, the Trump International Hotel restaurant.

MAR-A-LAGO TURKEY BURGER
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
3 Granny Smith apples, peeled and diced
1/8 cup canola oil
4 pounds ground turkey breast
2 Tbsp. salt (this seems excessive, so we used less than half this amount. They were fine.)
1 Tbsp. black pepper
2 tsp. Tabasco® chipotle pepper sauce
1 lemon , juiced and grated zest
1/2 bunch parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup Major Grey’s Chutney, pureed

Sauté the scallions, celery and apples in the canola oil until tender. Let cool.

Place the ground turkey in a large mixing bowl. Add sautéed items and the remaining ingredients. Shape into eight 8-ounce burgers. Refrigerate for 2 hours.

Season the turkey burgers with salt and pepper. Place on a preheated, lightly oiled grill. Grill each side for 7 minutes until meat is thoroughly cooked. Let sit for 5 minutes.
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Serve with a side of Mar-a-Lago Pear Chutney (see below) and your favorite toasted bread, pita or hamburger roll.

Mar-A-Lago Pear Chutney

1 Anjour pear , peeled and diced
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/2 cups Major Grey’s Chutney
1/4 cup dried currants or raisins

Preheat oven to 350°. Toss the diced pears with the cinnamon and salt. Bake on a parchment-lined cookie sheet for 10 minutes. Cool and mix with the chutney and currants or raisins.

Bacon slinky

4 May

We were recently treated to a fantastic night out and have a huge food debt to repay. After stuffing ourselves silly at a Brazilian rodizio, we got the idea to whip up a dinner of bacon-wrapped stuffed chicken to show appreciation for our hosts.
After assembling these little bacon slinky logs, chilling them helps keep the filling together for barbecuing.
Once the logs have cooled, they look lovely sliced into rounds. Perfect finger food for summer patio cocktail parties, tasty comfort in the winter months.
The filling itself is open to all sorts of tweaks. Roasted vegetables, chopped nuts, herbs — all are good here.
An ’80s trifecta of pesto/sun-dried tomatoes/feta or lemon zest would be a dreamy filling.
As would a Greek spinoff of feta, oregano, lemon, chopped spinach and green onion.

BARBECUED BACON-WRAPPED CHICKEN THINGS
Recipe: Julie Zwillich, Summer’s Best

8 large boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
8 ounces cream cheese or goat cheese softened (250 grams)
1 bunch green onions, chopped
24 slices bacon

Combine cream cheese and onion.
Butterfly chicken breasts from the thinnest edge towards the thickest (thick edge will be the middle when it is opened). Working one piece at a time, open breast on a piece of plastic wrap. Cover with a second piece of plastic wrap and pound to 1/4″ (6 millimetres) thickness with a mallet or rolling pin.
Spread an equal amount of cream cheese mixture evenly over the 8 breasts. Roll up the chicken enclosing the cheese completely. Wrap 1 strip of bacon, end to end around chicken, stretching it slightly. Add a second piece of bacon, wrapped to cover any exposed chicken. If necessary, continue wrapping with bacon until most of the chicken is covered. Secure with toothpicks. Chill several hours or overnight.
Cover grill with sheet of aluminum foil to help prevent flare-ups. Preheat to high. Place chicken on the foil. Reduce heat to medium and close lid. Turn chicken every 5 minutes until golden brown and cooked through, about 30 minutes.

Special sauciness

21 Apr

Dear Diary Saucy Cherie,
We need to talk. While it is true that you enjoy all things saucy, your willingness to consider, nay, encourage, the use of thousand island-type dressing on hamburgers needs to be addressed.
Is it the nostalgia of McDonald’s Big Mac secret sauce?
The tang of Manhattan’s Shake Shack topper? In’n’Out’s legendary spread? Or your latest obsession, Pink bike sauce from Pink Bicycle?
Thousand Island (a variant of Russian dressing) is a lardy, artery hardening melange of mayonnaise, ketchup, Tabasco sauce and finely chopped vegetables; most often pickles, onions, bell peppers, and green olives. Hold the hard boiled egg, please.
Some have said McDonald’s secret sauce is simply tartar sauce with mustard and ketchup.
Here it is revealed in its horrible chemical state:
Big Mac® Sauce: Soybean oil, pickle relish [diced pickles, high fructose corn syrup, sugar, vinegar, corn syrup, salt, calcium chloride, xanthan gum, potassium sorbate (preservative), spice extractives, polysorbate 80], distilled vinegar, water, egg yolks, high fructose corn syrup, onion powder, mustard seed, salt, spices, propylene glycol alginate, sodium benzoate (preservative), mustard bran, sugar, garlic powder, vegetable protein (hydrolyzed corn, soy and wheat), caramel color, extractives of paprika, soy lecithin, turmeric (color), calcium disodium EDTA (protect flavor).

Makes sense. Tartar sauce is a thick white goop made from mayonnaise and finely chopped pickled cucumber, capers, onions (or chives), and fresh parsley. Chopped hard-boiled eggs, olives, and horseradish are sometimes added, and dijon mustard is often used as an emulsifier.
Vinegar adds bite.
We’d have to say the secret lies in the proportions.
Too much ketchup and it’s a sticky, cloying mess: 1/2 cup mayonaise-1/2 cup ketchup-1/2 cup yellow mustard-1/4 cup sweet pickle relish.
Too much mayo and you’ve got a bland goopy slop.

We vow to rev up our burger season sauce with some inspired mixology. First stop: chopped sirloin patties with dreamy melted cheese on toasted English muffins.
And of course, one of these delectable sauces:

AMERICA’S TEST KITCHEN’s CLASSIC BURGER SAUCE
from Episode: Best Burgers and Fries
Makes about 1/4 cup
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon ketchup
1/2 teaspoon sweet pickle relish
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Whisk all ingredients together in small bowl.

SHACK SAUCE
from Shake Shack– makes about 3/4 cup sauce –
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
4 slices kosher dill pickle
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon paprika (We like the idea of adding smoked paprika.)
pinch cayenne pepper

Ingredients
Combine all ingredients in blender until smooth, scraping down sides of blender with rubber spatula as necessary.

Big Mac Special Sauce
• 1/3 cup mayonnaise
• 2 tsp pickle relish
• 2 tsp ketchup
• 2 tsp sugar
• 2 tsp yellow mustard
• 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of finely chopped onion
Stir all ingredients together and refrigerate.

Oh. So. Saucy.

7 Sep


True to our name, we are saucy. We also have an ongoing tie for best burger sauce. And we have a recipe for neither.
Sigh.

We still swoon over the dynamite green apple barbecue sauce served atop our burgers at Victoria, B.C.’s Blue Fox Cafe.

New York’s Shake Shack has a secret sauce, but we have yet to successfully replicate its velvety goodness. Oh well, at least we knicked their tomato-simmered onions recipe, below.

UPDATE!

The Fake Shack (or the Shack Burger at Home) by J. Kenji Lopez-Alt who posted at A Hamburger Today

– makes about 3/4 cup sauce –

1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
4 slices kosher dill pickle
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon paprika
pinch cayenne pepper

Ingredients
Combine all ingredients in blender until smooth, scraping down sides of blender with rubber spatula as necessary.

—————

Shake Shack Tomato-Simmered Onions
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 yellow onions, halved and thinly sliced
1/3 cup champagne vinegar
1/2 cup tomato puree
salt to taste
In a large saute pan over medium heat, heat oil until shimmering. Add onions and season with a large pinch of salt. Cook until very soft but not browned, about 15 minutes. Add vinegar to pan and simmer  for 10 minutes. Add tomato puree and simmer for another 10 minutes. Remove from heat and serve over hot dog and burgers.

Todd Wilbur’s In-n-Out sauce

1/2 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons finely minced white onion
1 1/2 tablespoons finely minced dill pickle relish
3/4 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
1/4 teaspoon yellow mustard
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/8 teaspoon salt
Deluxe Mayonnaise
2 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp barbecue sauce

Big Mac Special Sauce
• 1/3 cup mayonnaise
• 2 tsp pickle relish
• 2 tsp ketchup
• 2 tsp sugar
• 2 tsp yellow mustard
• 1 and 1/2 tablespoons of finely chopped onion
Stir all ingredients together and refrigerate.

another version:
½ cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons of French dressing
4 teaspoons sweet pickle relish
1 tablespoon finely minced white onion
1 teaspoon of white vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt

Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl. stir well.
Place sauce in a covered container and refrigerate for 4 hours (or overnight), so that the flavors blend.

Stir the sauce a couple of times as it chills.
Makes about ¾ cup

Labour Day, burger day

7 Sep

Labour Day gives us the last kick at the cat for summer long weekend burger barbecues.

We love our restaurant recipes down below, but this burger combines flavours from pub favourites. You can coast on this one all year round. We formed these into mini patties. The perfect mini bun to go with? In a pinch, hot dog buns sliced into thirds. Voila!

1 lb ground chicken

4 hot Italian sausages

1/3 cup either barbecue sauce, or Franks Red Hot Sauce blended with melted butter

Squeeze sausage out of casings and mix with chicken. Add sauce and gently mix together with your hands. Shape into patties (either six large or as many mini as you can stand making.) To prevent the burgers from puffing up, make a shallow depression using your thumb in the centre. We pan fry ours.

We have bathed our mini patties in extra doctored hot sauce to give them a buttery glaze. Just heat the combo (or barbecue sauce) in a sauce pan and take the patties in for a swim.

Other famous local burgers:

The Living Room

Unusual additions, such as miso, capers and sweet gherkins, give the burgers a complex, full flavour.

Servings: 4

1 egg

1/4 cup (50 mL) dry bread crumbs

1/4 cup (50 mL) finely chopped sweet gherkin pickles

2 shallots, finely chopped, or 1 small onion, grated

2 tbsp (25 mL) capers

2 tbsp (25 mL) light-colour miso

2 tbsp (25 mL) dijon mustard

1 clove garlic, minced

2 tsp (10 mL) minced gingerroot

2 tsp (10 mL) chopped fresh thyme

1/2 tsp (2 mL) each salt and pepper

1 lb (500 g) lean ground beef

4 Onion or hamburger buns

2/3 cup (150 ml) crumbled blue cheese

Half small red onion, thinly sliced

In bowl, beat egg. Stir in bread crumbs, pickles, shallots, capers, miso, mustard, garlic, ginger, thyme, salt and pepper; mix in beef. Shape into four 1/2-inch (1 cm) thick patties. (Make-ahead: Cover and refrigerate for up to 6 hours. Or layer between waxed paper in airtight container and freeze for up to 1 month; thaw in refrigerator.) Place patties on greased grill over medium-high heat; close lid and cook, turning once, until no longer pink inside, about 10 minutes. Cut buns in half; place, cut sides down, on grill and toast until golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Layer burgers, blue cheese then red onion on bottoms; sandwich with tops.

Buchanan’s Burger

Buchanan’s uses lean Alberta AAA sirloin, coarsely ground, for their burgers.

3 lbs (1.5 kg) coarsely ground sirloin

1/2 tsp (2 mL) sea salt

1/2 tsp (2 mL) onion powder

1/4 tsp (1 mL) ground white pepper

1/4 tsp (1 mL) garlic powder

1/4 cup (50 mL) ketchup

1 egg, lightly beaten

Vegetable oil, to oil patties or grill

Cheddar slices

8 hamburger buns, sliced open and toasted

Burger sauce (recipe follows) Preheat barbecue to medium high. Break up ground sirloin in a large stainless steel or glass bowl. Thoroughly mix next four ingredients together in a small bowl and then mix into sirloin. Stir in ketchup thoroughly. Mix in egg, being careful not to over mix. Divide meat mixture into 8 equal portions and form into 1- to 1 1/4-inch-thick (2.5- to 3-cm-thick) patties. Spray patties or brush preheated grill with vegetable oil to prevent burgers from sticking. Cook patties on the preheated, covered grill for 5 minutes. Flip each patty with a spatula and/or a pair of tongs and cook 3 more minutes. Top each patty with cheddar slices and cook another 2 minutes, or until patties are cooked through. While burgers are cooking, spread burger sauce on toasted buns. Add cooked patties and your favourite toppings (e.g., cooked bacon, roasted onion) to buns. Serve straight from the barbecue. Serves 8.

Cook’s Notes: Ground meat should be kept as close to refrigerator temperature as possible until the patties are placed on the barbecue to cook. If you overmix the meat mixture when you add the egg, the meat will become gluey and stick to your hands when you form the patties.

Variation: Spicy Burgers. Add 1/2 tsp (2 mL) paprika, 1/4 tsp (1 mL) chili powder and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) cayenne to the salt, onion powder, white pepper and garlic powder, and set this seasoning mixture aside. Follow instructions for adding the ketchup and egg, but do not add any of the seasoning mixture yet. Form patties as directed; with a pair of tongs, dip raw, unseasoned patties into seasoning mixture to coat. Proceed as directed, but replace the cheddar with a medium jack-jalapeno cheese. The cooked patties will have a blackened crust. For an even crustier burger, cook them in a skillet (remember to either spray the patties with vegetable oil or brush the cooking surface with vegetable oil.) Burger Sauce Mix together equal parts mayonnaise, seeded mustard, sweet pickle relish and chili sauce. Store, covered, in the refrigerator.

 

The Fake Shack (or the Shack Burger at Home)
Posted by J. Kenji Lopez-Alt at A Hamburger Today

– makes 4 burgers –

Ingredients
8 ounces beef sirloin, trimmed of gristle, and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 ounces well-marbled beef chuck, trimmed of gristle, and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 ounces well-marbled beef brisket, fat cap intact, trimmed of gristle, and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 tablespoons butter, melted
4 Martin’s Sandwich Rolls
4 tablespoons Shack Sauce (recipe follows)
4 leaves of green-leaf lettuce, clipped
8 center-cut slices ripe plum tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
Kosher salt and fresh-ground black pepper
4 slices yellow American cheese

Procedure
1. Place feed shaft, blade, and 1/4-inch die of meat grinder in freezer until well-chilled. Meanwhile, place meat chunks on rimmed baking sheet, leaving space between each piece and place in freezer for 10 minutes until meat is firm, but not frozen.

2. Combine meat in large bowl and toss to combine. Pass meat through grinder twice. Form into four disks, about 2-inches tall, and 2.5-inches wide. Refrigerate until ready for use.

3. Open buns but do not split hinge. Brush lightly with butter, then place under broiler or in toaster oven until golden brown, about 1 minute. Spread 1 tablespoon Shack Sauce on top half of each bun (for true authenticity, squirt out of squeeze bottle into three lines, three passes on each line). Place 1 leaf lettuce and 2 slices tomato on top half of each bun.

4. Using wadded-up paper towel, rub inside of heavy-bottomed 12-inch skillet with vegetable oil, then place over medium-high heat until just beginning to smoke. Season beef pucks on top side with salt and pepper, then place, seasoned side down, in skillet. Using back of heavy, flat spatula, press down on beef pucks firmly to form 4-inch round patties, being careful not to let it stick to bottom of spatula. Season top side with salt and pepper. Cook until crisp brown crust has formed, about 2-minutes.

5. Carefully scrape patties from skillet, and flip. Top each patty with 1 slice American cheese. Cook until cheese is melted, about 1 minute longer. Transfer patties to burger bun bottoms, close sandwiches, and serve.

Shack Sauce

– makes about 3/4 cup sauce –

Ingredients
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon ketchup
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
4 slices kosher dill pickle
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon paprika
pinch cayenne pepper

Ingredients
Combine all ingredients in blender until smooth, scraping down sides of blender with rubber spatula as necessary.