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In today's Media Mix, Prince finally pays up, plus McDonald's expanding chicken wings nationwide
Would you try these pizza burgers?
Check out these headlines you may have missed.
Pizza-Wrapped Burger: Today in burger mash-ups: Boston's Restaurant & Sports Bar's "pizzaburger," a burger wrapped in pizza with pizza and burger toppings. Stuffed with a beef patty, bacon, mozarella, and pizza sauce, topped with pepperoni and mozzarella, and topped with lettuce, tomatoes, and a pickle. [Delish]
Prince Pays for Dinner: Finally; after Prince walked out of Costata without paying the bill, his manager called the restaurant yesterday to pay, leaving a $500 tip. [Grub Street]
McDonald's Expanding Chicken Wings: The Mighty Wings are going national this September. [Bloomberg]
Behind Heinz: How much do you know about your favorite ketchup brand? Let's start with the number of varieties: 57. [Fast Company]
3/4 pound 80 percent lean ground chuck
3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
6 slices Muenster, Gruyère, Monterey Jack or pepper Jack cheese (optional)
6 toasted hamburger buns (do not use large buns see Note)
Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, pickles or other condiments, to taste
Place pork, ground chuck, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl. Using clean hands, mix ingredients, being careful not to overwork the mixture. Divide into 6 portions toss each portion back and forth between your hands until it forms a ball. (This is better than rolling them into balls, which makes them too dense.) Flatten each ball into a 1/2-inch thick patty.
Using your thumb, press into the middle of each patty to make a 2-inch wide indentation (this will prevent it from mounding high in the middle as it cooks, and promotes even cooking). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to cook.
Grill over medium-high heat until grill marks appear, about 4 minutes flip and grill for another 4 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers 160 F. Top with cheese, if using, and immediately remove from grill.
Spread bottom and top halves of buns with your choice of condiments. Place each patty on a bottom half and cover with a top half.
Note: If you use large hamburger buns, make 4 patties from the meat to fit the buns.
Epicurious drops beef recipes, drawing ire from the pro-burger crowd — and some food activists
Beef was already the red-hot topic du jour this week when food website Epicurious on Monday made some meaty news: It would no longer publish recipes using beef, citing the environmental harm caused by cattle farming.
“Our shift is solely about sustainability, about not giving airtime to one of the world’s worst climate offenders,” senior editor Maggie Hoffman and former digital director David Tamarkin wrote in a post announcing the decision.
Reaction was swift and illustrated the meaning of the metaphor about tossing red meat to a crowd. Some praised the decision, noting that tastes have changed and that readers are looking for more plant-based, less meaty dishes. Others slammed Epicurious for “canceling” beef.
Much of that backlash had to do with the political moment red meat already was having. Over the weekend, conservative media had pushed stories falsely claiming that the Biden administration’s plan to halve greenhouse gas emissions in a decade would require Americans to drastically reduce their meat consumption. Fox News ran breathless coverage of it, with chyrons blaring “BYE BYE BURGERS” and “UP IN YOUR GRILL.”
A graphic falsely claimed that the Biden plan required people to “cut 90% of red meat from diet, max 4 lbs per year, one burger per month.”
Epicurious declined to comment, but its editors portrayed the choice to eschew beef as a small but significant step toward a more sustainable food system. “It might not feel like much, but cutting out just a single ingredient — beef — can have an outsize impact on making a person’s cooking more environmentally friendly,” they wrote.
The platform, which is owned by Condé Nast, had actually stopped publishing new recipes containing beef about a year ago, the editors wrote. They decided to make the announcement now, they said, with beef consumption “slowly creeping up” after a long decline. “The conversation about sustainable cooking clearly needs to be louder this policy is our contribution to that conversation,” Hoffman and Tamarkin wrote.
Although Fox News host John Roberts admitted that the graphic that ran during his show was untrue, there was no putting the genie back in the bottle, and it had already taken off on social media, prompting some lawmakers to vow they would defend their beloved steaks and patties from the clutches of the White House.
While many people commenting on the Epicurious move seemed to be motivated by the partisan pro-beef sentiment circulating on social media, the announcement also disappointed many people in the food and animal-welfare world.
“I love Epicurious, but this seems a little short-sighted,” said Danielle Nierenberg, a food activist and the founder of Food Tank, a nonprofit focused on sustainability and equity.
She notes that not all beef is equal and that there are options for more sustainable beef, including regenerative farming methods and pasture-raised cattle. “It might be good to reduce our meat consumption, but it could mislead consumers into thinking that all beef is bad,” she says. “There are small-scale producers who need consumers’ support.”
Others noted that beef isn’t the only food whose farming has environmental costs.
In the editor’s note, Epicurious acknowledged that beef isn’t the only potentially problematic ingredient to be found in recipes. “All ruminant animals (like sheep and goats) have significant environmental costs, and there are problems with chicken, seafood, soy, and almost every other ingredient,” they wrote. “In a food system so broken, almost no choice is perfect.”
And although Epicurious explained its reasoning as purely an environmental one, animal advocates were disappointed that the publication didn’t take other factory farming into account. Lewis Bollard, the farm animal welfare program officer at Open Philanthropy Project, said he welcomes the increasing attention to the environmental impacts of meat, but he hopes people adopt a more inclusive definition of “sustainability.”
The greens varied and the cheeses were extremely different, but both were wonderful
Ramsay's American-style recipe called for sharp cheddar cheese, while the Euro burger highlighted the flavors of both Gorgonzola and brie.
While the cheddar lent more of a classic burger flair, the Gorgonzola and brie added an explosion of saltiness and creaminess that I've never gotten from a burger before. Both melted beautifully.
The classic American recipe called for an intact leaf of bib lettuce while the European recipe called for a bed of arugula. Turns out, arugula makes for a much better, more sturdy base. The bib lettuce slid around once it got wet from the moist patty juices and the burger completely fell apart. The arugula, though, stayed put and held the sandwich together.
And to Drink …
Vegetable-based burgers like this one tend to replace the tang of beef with a heavy dose of umami. For the combination of black beans and brown rice that gives this burger its heft, we can go in two directions. First would be a fresh, lively red, with plenty of acidity and few tannins, the kind of red that benefits from a slight chill. A lot of wines fit this description, beginning with the original vins de soif, Beaujolais and Beaujolais-Villages. I would also be happy with the many thirst-quenching reds, made all over the world from myriad grapes, some of which are called natural wines. The other option would be a so-called orange wine, whites produced using the technique for making reds. These are generally amber in color, with a mild rasp of tannin and often go well with umami-rich dishes. ERIC ASIMOV
How to Make the Best Grilled Sliders
Choose your patty ingredients
Just like with full-size burgers, sliders can be made with just about any meat or meat substitute: try ground beef, turkey, chicken or lamb, or go for a vegetarian ground meat substitute. Then add seasonings—you can go as simple as salt and pepper or amp things up with all manner of fresh and dried herbs and spices. Think about the flavors in your planned toppings when you are choosing how to season your patties. For example, the Pizza Sliders are blended with fresh parsley and oregano and later topped with marinara and mozzarella cheese for a crowd-pleasing take on classic pizza flavors. Use any one of our healthy slider recipes or healthy burger recipes for inspiration.
Customize your toppings
Letting kids choose their own toppings for their sliders will help ensure that they&aposll actually eat their dinner. Anything goes, of course, but when considering toppings we like to have something saucy or creamy (mayo, ketchup, special sauce, BBQ sauce, pizza sauce), something crunchy or juicy (pickles, crisp lettuce, raw or caramelized onions, tomato slices, cooked mushrooms) and𠅏or those so inclined𠅌heese (Cheddar, mozzarella, provolone, feta, Gouda, etc.). And while matching the seasonings in your sliders to your toppings will give them a delicious gourmet spin, it never hurts to also put out a bottle of ketchup for those who like to keep things simple.
Form and cook the patties
Once you&aposve chosen your burger ingredients and toppings, it&aposs time to form the patties𠅊 perfect task for kids to help with (just have them wash their hands well before and after working with the meat). "The key to even cooking is equal patty sizes that are the same thickness throughout," says Joy Howard, EatingWell&aposs Cooking with Kids columnist and a frequent contributor to the magazine and website. "Another tip: Shape the patties a little larger than the size of your buns—they&aposll shrink as they cook!" Kids can also help grill the sliders, with adult supervision, of course. Using an instant-read thermometer is the best way tell if your burgers are done. Kids can help with this too! Insert the tip of the thermometer in the center of the burger. For beef, it should read 135ଏ for medium-rare (about 3 minutes per side), 140ଏ for medium, 150° for medium-well and 160° for well-done (the USDA recommendation).
Serve and enjoy
Set out the toppings and let everyone assemble their own sliders. Gather around and compare your creations before digging in—you can even have a fun game of naming your customized sliders (in one EatingWell staffer&aposs family, a "Mom Burger" is one with absolutely EVERYTHING on it).
After you&aposve all enjoyed the meal, it&aposs time for another fun lesson for your kids: How to Clean a Grill!
TV personality, chef and restaurateur Andrew Zimmern prefers to put a South of the Border spin on his pork burgers. “In this recipe, I infuse ground pork with bold Mexican flavors to create an irresistible burger,” he explains. “For the best results, it’s essential that you allow the pork to sit overnight with all of the seasonings to develop complex flavor.” Those seasonings include onion, garlic, and jalapenos, plus oregano, chile powder, cilantro, and chipotle chiles in adobo. Zimmern’s burger is topped with a quick tomatillo-avocado salsa that’s the perfect complement to the rich patty, plus a thin slice of tomato and melty cheddar cheese.
Unlike his heavily seasoned pork burgers, when it comes to salmon burgers, Zimmern takes a less is more approach. “This simple recipe allows the flavor of the salmon to shine,” he explains. With fewer ingredients, quality is extra important. “I prefer to use fresh salmon, as opposed to canned salmon,” says Zimmern. “The extra effort and cost is worth it for a better tasting burger with a superior texture.” On top, Zimmern adds oven-roasted tomatoes, which he recommends keeping on hand, especially during the summer tomato season—plus avocado slices and greens dressed with a squeeze of lemon. “For a healthier alternative, you can skip the bun and serve the salmon patty on top of a salad.”
First, I caramelized onions and cooked the bacon
Onions take a very long time to achieve peak caramelization. So I kicked off this culinary adventure by grabbing my onion goggles — yes, I cook every day, and I do use onion goggles a lot of the time — and slicing into a large Vidalia onion.
I was intentional in my cutting to make sure I got long, 1/4-inch thick ribbons of the allium to work with.
Then, I added them to a pan on low heat with butter and let them sweat it out. After about seven minutes on low, I added enough balsamic vinegar to change the color of the onions.
Using a wooden spatula, I pushed the onions around every couple of minutes, added some more balsamic, and pushed again, repeating until they became a thick, glossy, fragrant pile.
I used another skillet to cook one slice of smoked bacon. After testing out eight different ways to cook bacon, I found that starting it on a cold skillet makes for a great in-sandwich texture.
I set both the bacon slice and the caramelized onions aside for later.
Pizza-Wrapped Quadruple Cheeseburger Costs $22 and Probably Five Years of Your Life
The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers may be a minor league baseball team, but their stadium eats are in the major leagues. This season, the team is embracing the appeal of the over-the-top stunt foods and will give fans the option to pound pizza-wrapped burgers during the game, according to Fox 11. Who needs popcorn and hot dogs when you can just eat a heart attack?
While the item is called the Meatlovers Pizza Burger, the name wholly undersells it. The burger features not one, but four beef patties that are wrapped in in a pepperoni, bacon, and sausage DiGiorno pizza. One burger will cost you $22 and likely 5 years of your life although, it might be worth it considering it gives you the chance to feast on two of greatest junk foods in one sitting. The stadium has a history of offering over-the-top burgers and is bringing back its Big Mother Funnel Burger which features funnel cakes for buns.
Ballpark Summer [email protected]
New this year…
Meatlover’s Pizza Burger
Grilled Cheese Venom Cheeseburger pic.twitter.com/FX8eAFePpZ
— TimothyMichaelHansen (@ChefTimHansen) February 19, 2016
The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers aren’t the first to turn to frozen pizza brands for burger buns. In 2014, the stunt burger masters at PYT debuted a burger featuring Ellio’s pizza for buns. But PYT didn’t stop there: For an added layer of excitement and grease, the team deep-fried the pizza slices before layering it with a meatball patty, mozzarella, and provolone.
Burger King's New $2 Snack Box Comes With a Burger, 10 Nuggets, and More
These days, you have to try and find value wherever you can. There were lots of food deals to be had in the early days of the pandemic, but it seems like prices and promotions have scaled back to “normal” levels despite the fact that life today is anything but.
So with that in mind, hats off to Burger King for offering a whole crapton of food for the price of 200 pennies.
As mentioned in the tweet confirming that this deal is real, the $2 Snack Box gets you 10 nuggets, one cheeseburger, a medium order of fries and a small drink for, again, $2. That comes out to 50 cents per item you get, or 20 cents per nugget with a free burger, fries, and drink. No matter what sort of creative encountering you choose to employ, that’s an affordable way to fill up.
While it sounds too good to be true, it’s certainly not— as long as you have BK’s app. There, you’ll find the $2 snack box deal under the “offers” tab. Also hidden within there seems to be a $2 “Whopper Wednesdays” deal. Even if you don’t like great Snack Box deals and it isn’t Wednesday, new users to the app can also claim a free whopper when they sign up.
The major caveat with the Snack Box deal, as fast food ads so often mention, is that prices and participation may vary. Depending on where you are, you might end up paying a bit more than $2. Usually that isn’t a big deal, but jumping from $2 to $3, that’s a 50% increase!
Anyways, it’s hard to complain about getting that much food for $2 (or $3) either way, and it certainly puts that Wendy’s 4 for $4 deal to shame. Hopefully this will kick off some sort of fast food arms race, where chains compete to offer as much food as possible for as little as possible until their profit margins disappear entirely. I think that’s something we can all get behind.