Category: Made It

Burgers from the Grill Get Me Every Time

grilledburger2One of my favorite things about living in the ‘burbs of Boston is having real outdoor space. Not a stoop, or a fire escape or a porch that seems nice but you’re too afraid to go out there because it leans just a little too much. A real-life, backyard outdoor space. We’re fortunate that ours came with a nice patio that has turned out to be a great parking spot for a grill. While we haven’t fired it up as often as I would like, we have tossed a few burgers on there this summer. And they have been nothing short of awesome.

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Burger #18 : Burgers on the Grill

THE INGREDIENTS:
for the burgers (makes 3 obnoxious burgers or 4 regular ones):
1 lb ground beef
salt & pepper (according to your tastes)
+ your favorite buns + toppings (cheese, mustard, ketchup, tomato, etc.)

THE DETAILS:
The easiest ever. (This is nowhere near a recipe. Just too delicious not to share.) Turn on the grill so it gets all nice and heated. Form 3 or 4 patties with the ground meat. Sprinkle salt and pepper on each side. Put on grill. Cook. Pile on toppings. Eat.

** This year, I’m making (at least) 20 burgers. See ‘em all. **

Burgers & Fries Get Me Every Time

fries5Here is my confession. This was supposed to be a post about Burger #18. And that’s the burger right there. Sitting on my gluten-free lettuce “bun.” But I have since forgotten about the burger. Sure, it was tasty. But what was in it is beyond me anymore. That’s because, on this night, I was all about the fries.

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I picked up a bag of these Alexia Straight Cut Fries because I had a coupon but they quickly, we’re talking two fries in, became my new favorite fry fix. I found that they got and stayed crispier than most store-bought oven-baked fries. And the texture was right on for me.
fries4And they look so pretty next to that burger, right? I think it might have been a “fajita burger” with some sautéed red and green peppers thrown in there, but who can remember when the fries look like that?

fries3I promise that I will give you the real burger #18 soon. (We’re almost to 20!) But for now, do yourself a favor and make these fries. Then, do me a favor and invite me over to help you eat them.

PS. I wasn’t paid or perked to mention these fries. I really just love them and think you should try them.
Don’t forget the ketchup!

 

Roasted Garlic Burgers Get Me Every Time

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Earlier this year, my fellow Boston Blogger Kate posted an easy recipe for some roasted garlic butter. I jumped at the chance to make it when we had family over soon after, but I ended up roasting a little more garlic than I needed to have enough butter for five adults.
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So, naturally, when taking stock of my fridge one night, it seemed logical to combine my ground beef with roasted garlic and create a burger Mr. GMET wouldn’t be able to pass up. (His love of garlic is only second to his love of yours truly.)
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The result—a roasted garlic burger that tasted great with ketchup (me), mustard (he) and as leftovers two nights later.
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We’re inching our way closer and closer to that 20th burger. Maybe I’ll be able to get one of these bad boys on the grill in a couple weeks. (fingers crossed.)
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Burger #17 : Roasted Garlic Burger

THE INGREDIENTS:
for the burgers (makes 4):
1 lb ground beef
salt & pepper (according to your tastes)
3 cloves roasted garlic, diced
1 tbsp diced onion
2 tbsp bread crumbs (mine are GF, of course)
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
+ your favorite buns + toppings (cheese, mustard, ketchup, tomato, etc.)

THE DETAILS:
Mix the ground beef with the salt and pepper plus the garlic, onion, Worcestershire + bread crumbs. Don’t over-mix your meat though or it will get a weird texture. Keep it meaty! If it’s falling apart or too juicy, add an extra spoonful of breadcrumbs. Now, throw em on your grill, in the oven, in a frying pan, etc and watch them carefully, turning about 8 minutes in to get both sides nice and grilled (more or less, depending on how well you like ‘em done.) Oh, and be sure not to press down on them, that lets out the juices that keep your burger extra tasty.

Make some onion rings, or toss a salad while the cooking is going down. Then pile on your toppings and enjoy.

** This year, I’m making (at least) 20 burgers. See ‘em all. **

BBQ Chicken Burgers Get Me Every Time

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You ever have that “want two things at once” feeling? You know. Like you want chocolate, but something salty and so you compromise with yourself and go for the chocolate covered pretzels? Or you want to sleep in, but you know you should get up so you grab your favorite blanket and move that party to the couch? Or when you don’t want to shovel that 6 inches of snow, but someone has to so you send your husband? Yeah. That.

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Well, sometimes my dinner menu is all over the map. I want Chinese take-out and the Mr. wants Buffalo chicken. OR, I want Chinese take-out but I also want Buffalo Chicken. Still with me? Well, I think that’s what this burger experiment was created for. For dinner, I thought BBQ would be great, but burgers also sounded delicious. And so, we’ve arrived. This is burger #16 out of 20. (When did we get here?!) The BBQ Chicken Burger with Onions.

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This burger is similar to one I’ve made before (the BBQ cheddar burger) but, as I’ve mentioned more than once, the ground chicken burger is so adaptable. And here, it really lets the BBQ smoky/sweet flavor shine. I sautéed up some onions to pile on top and we had the best of both BBQ & Burger worlds.

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Burger #16 : BBQ Chicken Burger with Onions

THE INGREDIENTS:
for the burgers (makes 4):
1 lb ground chicken
salt & pepper (according to your tastes)
2 tsp diced garlic
1 tbsp diced onion
2 tbsp bread crumbs
4 tbsp cheddar cheese, grated + a little extra for the toppings
3 tbsp your favorite BBQ sauce + an extra dollop for the toppings
1/2 medium onion, roughly chopped
+ your favorite buns

THE DETAILS:
Start with the onions. Heat about a tablespoon of oil in a small sauté pan over low heat. Add your roughly chopped onion and mix so the oil is spread evenly throughout. Then, let them do their thing and caramelize while you fix up those burgers.

Mix the chicken with the salt and pepper plus the  garlic, onion, BBQ sauce, bread crumbs and cheese. Don’t over-mix your meat though or it will get a weird texture. Keep it meaty! If it’s falling apart or too juicy, add an extra spoonful of breadcrumbs. Now, throw em on your grill, in the oven, in a frying pan, etc and watch them carefully, turning about 8 minutes in to get both sides nice and grilled (more or less, depending on how well you like ‘em done.)

Make some onion rings, or toss a salad while the cooking is going down. Then pile on the onions, some more cheddar and a little squeeze of BBQ sauce. Enjoy!

** This year, I’m making (at least) 20 burgers. See ‘em all. **

Jalapeño Cheddar Burgers Get Me Every Time

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Brussel Sprouts. They’re one of my two new veggie obsessions, the other being cauliflower, of course. So, what better to go with a Jalapeño Cheddar Burger than some sprouts. Some spicy, iron skillet Brussel Sprouts.

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OK. Maybe onion rings. If you’re Mr. GMET and you can eat those kind of things. (GF onion rings are for special occasions only.) Either way, these burgers have a spicy kick.

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I added a little diced cheddar in the burger itself. And then, obviously, more on top. With a dollop of Hidden Valley Ranch dressing. (Is there any other kind?)

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THE INGREDIENTS:
for the burgers (makes 2):
1/2 lb ground beef
salt & pepper (according to your tastes)
2 tsp finely diced garlic
1 finely diced jalapeño (with the seeds if you can handle the heat.)
4 tbsp cheddar cheese, 2 tbsp diced, 2 tbsp shredded
+ your favorite buns

THE DETAILS:
Mix the beef with the salt and pepper plus the diced garlic, jalapeño and cheese. Don’t over-mix your meat though or it will get a weird texture. Keep it meaty! Throw em on your grill, in the oven, in a frying pan, etc and watch them carefully, turning about 8 minutes in to get both sides nice and grilled (more or less, depending on how well you like ’em done.) Make some onion rings, grab the sprouts or get out your favorite chips while the cooking is going down. Then pile on your favorite toppings (roasted red peppers, avocado slices, etc.) and dig in.

** This year, I’m making (at least) 20 burgers. See ‘em all. **

Black Pepper Burgers Get Me Every Time

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Growing up, I never got the need for freshly ground pepper. At a restaurant, I always just thought it was for show. That the waiter coming over with a larger than life pepper mill meant we were at a nice restaurant or something. To me, a kid, pepper was pepper.

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But I get it. And these burgers get lots of it. Get your grinding arm in good shape. Set it to coarse. And go. You’ll need a good amount of pepper. (Note, my favorite pepper mill had just run out of peppercorns so I used some pre-ground too.)

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Now wise beyond my years I’m sold. And I’m quite possibly under the impression that every restaurant, no matter how fancy, needs freshly ground pepper. Maybe it can be a new job. The name tag will read “pepper grinder.” Creating new jobs. Helping the economy. One pepper mill at a time.

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BURGER #14: Black Pepper Burger

THE INGREDIENTS:
for the burgers (makes 4-5):
1 lb ground beef (or turkey, or whatever makes your heart and belly happy)
1 tsp salt
1 clove diced garlic
1 tbsp tamari (or soy sauce)
3 tbsp freshly ground coarse pepper
+ your favorite buns

for the fixins:
tomato, onion, etc
ketchup, mustard, etc
cheese, if you prefer cheeseburgers.

THE DETAILS:
Mix the first four burger ingredients together to make 4 extra large or 5 regular size burgers. Now, take all that freshly ground pepper and make sure it’s in a sizable bowl, or on a small plate. Carefully place both sides of each burger in the pepper, coating them with a nice crust. Throw em on your grill, in the oven, in a frying pan, etc and watch them carefully, turning about 8 minutes in to get both sides nice and grilled. Top as you see fit and grab a seat. We had these peppery burgers with a salad and it was just the right side. But please, go crazy… fries, onion rings, whatever gets ya goin.

** This year, I’m making (at least) 20 burgers. See ‘em all. **

Spinach & Artichoke Dip Gets Me Every Time

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Recently, for a little holiday party, I made this tasty, gluten-free Spinach & Artichoke dip. It’s so tasty, pretty easy to pull together and you can eat assured knowing that everything you put in is pretty natural (I mean, for as natural as mayo can ever seem.)

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I followed this recipe pretty closely the first time I made it. But the second time, I thought it could use a little extra crunch. So, I added a can of chopped water chestnuts. That’s it. It looks so good I could dig in again right now.

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This Little Wreath Gets Me Every Time

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This is it. The Craft-Up success* I promised in follow-up to last week’s serious fail. It’s nothing to write home about. But from a distance, this DIY wreath doesn’t look too bad.

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I started with some foam leftover from the headboard project. I shimmied it on to a coat hanger and bent the whole thing into a loop.

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This is where things got interesting. Because the original plan was to wrap the whole thing in yarn. But, that didn’t work out too well. I devised a plan, first, I’d wrap it in gauze, and then in yarn. That was a no go as well. I decided to wrap it in some left over fabric instead.

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From there, The initial idea was that the wreath would be an ever-changing, all-season thing. So, I then wrapped some festive ribbons around the wreath and pinned them in place.

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Who knows, maybe in the spring, the red and green will come off and some nice pastel ribbons will turn this into an Easter wreath. Autumnal ribbons for fall? We’ll see.

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Louise is even enjoying the new holiday look. (Actually, she’s simple sitting on the radiator cover to stay warm. She could care less about the decorations.) The tree was on sale at Target last year after Christmas, so as much as I’d love to say I made it, I didn’t.

*success is a relative term. In this case, it means I successfully made something.

A Craft-Up Fail Gets Me Every Time

CraftUpFail

Remember at the beginning of the year when I started The Great Craft Up 2013? Well, I didn’t get very far in using up my craft supplies. It might have even demotivated me to craft, if that’s possible. And it was especially hard to go to the craft store for shop supplies and not buy everything anything else. I did pretty well for the first oh, three-quarters of the year. But then. You guys. Coupons. The canvas in the above picture was on sale. And then, I had a 40% off coupon on top of it. So they were around $11/each and I. couldn’t. resist. (I bought 2!) Craft-Up Fail!

P.S. I do have big plans for these canvasses. A winter project for sure. AND, to make up for my huge fail, I made a wreath over the weekend, which I’ll share soon. (It’s nowhere near spectacular, but you gotta know when to walk away, right?)

Bacon & Cheese Burgers Get Me Every Time

BaconCheeseBurger2

These burgers, are out of control. They’re not any regular bacon cheeseburger. They’re bacon and cheese burgers. With the cheese and the bacon carefully stuffed into the middle. It’s burger 13/20. And I’m calling it the Bacon & Cheese Burger, just so you don’t get confused with a Bacon Cheeseburger. There is a huge difference.

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Like first, you take leftover bacon from Sunday morning and chop it up . Then you take some cheese and shred that right in a little dish with it. Then you make 2 little ground beef patties and put your cheese and bacon mixture between those patties to make one real (oversized) stuffed burger. And that is what the hokey pokey is all about—these burgers.

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These burgers are juicy and flavorful and as good as any burger you’ll get at the restaurant down the street. The bacon imparts wonderful flavor throughout and the cheese, I used cheddar, really balances it all out.

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I really just can’t say enough. Or, apparently show you enough photos. I loved these burgers. Mr. GMET loved these burgers. We will be making these burgers again. Alright. Enough of it all, one more photo and the rest of the details.

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THE INGREDIENTS:
for the burgers (makes 2):
1/2 lb ground beef
salt & pepper (according to your tastes)
2 tsp of both finely diced onion and garlic
2 tbsp of your favorite cheese, shredded
2 tbsp bacon, cooked & chopped
+ your favorite buns

for the fixins:
romaine lettuce, tomato, onion, etc
ketchup, mustard, etc

THE DETAILS:
Mix the first four burger ingredients together but don’t over-mix your meat and form four small patties. Take the bacon and cheese, mix it together into two little piles and put each in between two patties. Throw em on your grill, in the oven, in a frying pan, etc and watch them carefully, turning about 8 minutes in to get both sides nice and grilled. Make some fries, throw together a salad or get out your favorite chips while the cooking is going down. Then pile on your favorite toppings and dig in.

** This year, I’m making (at least) 20 burgers. See ‘em all. **