I hope you’re having a great Memorial Day weekend. Naturally, this is a pretty big grilling holiday around this part. Memorial day is right around the time the weather takes a turn for the warm and sunny in Chicago. Just today, we had a brisk morning, a warm early afternoon, a super quick thunderstorm, and now bright and humid weather. It’s a pretty big mix, but you can see why everyone goes out in droves, charcoal grill and burger flipper in tow.
Just in case you’re looking for something new to top your burgers with, I’ve put together 3 burger sauces and staged some burgers for you, dear reader. Hopefully this post inspires you to mix and match flavors on this grilling holiday.
Read more after the jump!
For my last birthday, we took a weekend trip to New Orleans. New Orleans is a fantastic weekend destination and a food and drink lover’s dream – but that’s another post. We decided we would wing most of our dining there and see where the jazz took us, but one thing was for certain – I wanted to eat at Pêche, and it did not disappoint. Aside from the best tartare I’ve ever had, I could not resist ordering the Ground Shrimp Noodles. They were saucy, spicy, savory and completely unique – and that brings us to today’s recipe….
Of course you’ve had an idea gets stuck in your head and you just can’t seem to shake it – In the process of searching for something “breakfasty” to feature on this blog again, I just kept coming back to Shakshuka. The thing is, I’d never had it before. I have all of Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbooks, I’ve watched many-a middle-eastern tv show, and heard from many friends how great this dish could be. It just seemed to be in my head. During the week, I sat back down with Yotam’s Jerusalem cookbook and started flipping through the pages. Shakshuka was back and it needed to be done. My take on this is closer to Deb Perlman’s version, we both agree on the zucchini and squash. I’ve paired mine with Yotam’s suggestion of zhoug and a few of my favorite ingredients from my line-cook days.
The best part about this dish, though, is the impression it made on me before I even tried it. I started with broiling the vegetables for extra depth of flavor – the combinations of smells and filled the kitchen before anything even hit the pan. After that, I added some posh canned tomatoes and topped it exactly the way I wanted it – full of toppings. In tasting the dish, I noticed that the version I’ve crafted here today really has a strong backbone. It could stand up to even more intense flavors – the mild acidity, lingering burn, and creaminess from the egg would do great sitting next to some deeply browned lamb patties or roasted game. I present to you a Roasted Shakshuka paired with Zhoug Sauce. Dip your favorite pitas in the remnants of the runny egg yolk and sauce, sit with some friends, and enjoy this dish.
Bao. Enough said? Okay, maybe not. Maybe you haven’t had your bao initiation yet – if you’ve never heard of these pillowy, slightly sweet tiny loaves of ‘bread’, we wouldn’t be totally shocked. I had my first bao from a lettuce-entertain-you chain restaurant called Wow Bao – the Chinese version of the bao usually has a rich filling enclosed in the bao dough, then steamed off. They’re a delight, so you should definitely seek some out! You can even buy them frozen from a specialty foods store and cook them off in your rice cooker. While those are amazing, sandwich bao are even more fun because you can enjoy them as a group and cook up a lot of different toppings to enjoy in different combinations.
The thing is, they’re a bit of a project to tackle if you can’t pick some up from the store. To save time, check out an asian grocery store and buy them by the pack! If you’re entertaining, we can easily see you bringing out a plate of the bao buns, the fixings, and pairs of chopsticks for everyone. Have at it, friends!
Hi everybody! I hope things are well – as I recover from the holiday season, I can firmly say that I’m ready for a new year in food. Over the holiday, I received quite a few cookbooks as gifts and have been hurriedly leafing through the pages. Naturally, eating and cooking inspiration comes and goes, but I’ll never get tired of flipping through beautiful glossy photos and overflowing ingredient lists. One book I received is The Silver Spoon, famed Italian cookbook-bible. I won’t even pretend I’ve gotten through half of the book yet – but somehow, I landed on the page about lentils.
I’ll be honest, lentils are something that my family never cooked while growing up and weren’t part of my early adult years at all. I love them now, though. To make up for lost time, here’s a quick and easy Italian sausage and lentil dish – it comes together in a snap and would be great as a main dish, a side, or even breakfast! If you end up making it, consider leaving us a comment or sending us an email! We’d love to rap about lentils with you.
Hash Brown Breakfast Burgers are the ultimate Saturday afternoon food. You wake up late, you assemble a few items, and you’re set! While this dish can easily impress the most discerning of brunch guests, it’s truly easy to put together and hardly requires a recipe. Regardless, it’s definitely worth sharing here. Dress this burger up with our salsa macha, make an aioli, or drizzle some hollandaise over the top – or dress it down with some ketchup or hot sauce.