Wednesday, December 1, 2010

What You Should Have Eaten #19

Bacon and Cheese Stuffed Hamburgers

I normally wouldn’t post about a dinner like this. It’s burgers, frozen tater tots and a bag salad. Great, right? But two things make this post-worthy.

First, this is the first time I’m actually grilling the burgers. Before, I made them on a Foreman Grill or, when that died, a skillet. I recently got my first ever grill, though, and these are the inaugural burgers for it. I was so excited.

Second, I’m doing something with the burgers that a friend recommended. The last time I made burgers, I chopped up some cheese and mixed it in with the ground beef. He suggested that instead I make thin patties and use them to make stuffed burgers. I was intrigued, and I’ve been thinking about these stuffed burgers ever since.

The burger recipe pictured is the base recipe I always use, but I almost always tweak it in some way. This time, I added some coriander and some of the beer I was drinking (Terrapin Moo-Hoo chocolate milk stout).

I decided to go all out with the stuffing. I fried up some applewood smoked bacon and bought some smoked gouda.

I was making four burgers, so I began with eight patties, roughly 1/3 of an inch thick. I then placed a bit of cheese in the middle of each patty, a chunk of bacon on top of the cheese, and another slice of cheese on top of that. I put another patty on top of all that and sealed the edges. If you didn’t know that there was something inside of this mouthwatering mound of meat, you wouldn’t be able to tell just by looking.

My first-ever attempt at starting a mound of charcoal didn’t go all that smoothly. I used crumpled up newspaper instead of lighter fluid (as recommended by the little pamphlet that came with the grill), and the first time I lit everything, it didn’t stay lit. The second  time it stayed lit, but the coals weren’t even lit after the 30 minutes I let the coals burn; some fell too far away from the middle of the pyramid. I was only cooking four small burgers, though, so I wasn’t that worried.

The burgers took 20 minutes to cook, and I flipped them every five minutes.

Parker wanted some input in the creation of this wonderful burger, so he decided we should put a tater tot on top. Who was I to argue?

This was without a doubt the best burger I’ve ever made. I can’t NOT make it this way from now on. In the future I’ll be experimenting with different types of fillings, different cheeses and such, and I’ll be including different beers and maybe a splash of whiskey or wine in the meat. The possibilities are endless!

Oh, and Parker loved it, too. Bella only ate her tots and salad, and Bobby at his tots and the buns. Sigh, you can’t please everyone, I guess.

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