New Recipe Tuesday – Really, it’s not political! – Obama’s Short Ribs

Welcome to New Recipe Tuesday! I am solidly planted in my no theme, theme, so my “anything goes” mentality is working for me and I hope you will continue to indulge me as I bounce around in my randomness. I am also deeply entrenched in a bit of procrastination, as I actually made a new recipe last week and never posted. And it was really good too! I am going to save that one for later in the week and I will post it for you all, because it is yummy and you need to make it.

But let’s not dwell. I did go searching for a recipe this week, and this one actually fell onto my Facebook feed yesterday with a title that was enough for me to investigate further. I follow the New York Times Cooking page on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram; yes, extraordinarily over killed. But I often find things on their pages that look really delicious and I would hate to miss something because it wasn’t on the app that I happened to be perusing that day. And when this one popped up, I clicked through to see what it was all about.

Obamas Short Ribs
Marcus Samuelsson’s “Obama’s Short Ribs”

The reason this dish is called Obama’s Short Ribs is because famed chef Marcus Samuelsson made them for the President when he visited his Red Rooster restaurant in Harlem. There is nothing more to it than that, so please do not think I am somehow making a statement here. They are very easy to make and the end result is a hearty dish with deep flavors that are different than any rib dish I have ever made. You can call them whatever you want, as long as you call them wonderful.

I am going to give full credit for this recipe to NYT Cooking and Marcus Samuelsson. I made no changes to this recipe except that the fresh lemongrass didn’t look good so I used the kind that comes in the tube that you can get in the produce department (Gourmet Garden brand). It was perfect as written; I wouldn’t fool around with it; just make it and enjoy it.

Thanks for stopping by. Seriously, give this one a try. You will be so happy you did. Enjoy and see you next week.

Obama’s Short Ribs

Ingredients

  • 8 (6-ounce) English-cut short ribs
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, trimmed and chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, trimmed and chopped
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, trimmed, smashed and minced (or about 1 ½ tablespoon of lemongrass paste)
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and minced (or about a tablespoon of ginger paste)
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • 3 cups beef or chicken broth
  • ½ cup plum sauce
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 2 sprigs flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 bay leaves

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 325 degrees. Pat meat dry with paper towels and season all over with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat grapeseed oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When oil shimmers, add short ribs and brown on all sides, about 2 minutes per side; transfer to a plate.
  3. Add onion, carrot, celery, lemongrass, garlic and ginger to the pot. Season with salt and cook, stirring often, until onion softens, about 5 minutes. Pour in wine and cook, stirring to dissolve any of the brown bits that may still be on the bottom of the pot. Add broth, plum sauce, soy sauce, thyme, parsley and bay leaves and bring to a simmer.
  4. Return short ribs to pot, along with any juices, cover and slide pot into oven. Braise until meat is fork-tender, about 2 hours.
  5. Transfer meat to a plate. Strain braising liquid into a fat separator. If you don’t have a fat separator, use a ladle to skim the fat off the top of the braising liquid; then strain through a fine mesh sieve.
  6. Discard bay leaves and thyme stems and transfer vegetables to a food processor. Process vegetables until smooth, then add 1 1/2 cups of the defatted braising liquid to the processor and pulse to combine.
  7. Return sauce to Dutch oven and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add short ribs and turn to coat in the sauce.

Obama's Short Ribs
Marcus Samuelsson’s “Obama’s Short Ribs”

 

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New Recipe Tuesday – Another TV Week – Meatball Curry

Welcome to week two of New Recipe Tuesday, No Theme! I still have not settled on any particular weekly theme, and I actually like the “anything goes” freedom of not having to search endlessly to find a dish that fits into a specific mold. I’m not in a real hurry to settle into a new path, so I hope you don’t mind a little randomness.

I am amused with myself that I am making another TV recipe this week. But I was really tired yesterday and needed something simple so Food Network came to my rescue. There really is nothing on that website that is complicated. There is one person on the network that I find interesting and that is Aarti Sequeira; a winner of Next Food Network Star several seasons ago. She is Indian and her recipes for curry dishes are usually pretty tasty. So that is where I went.

meatballcurry
Meatball Curry

I found a super simple recipe called Meatball Curry; a one pan dinner that comes together quick and has the coconut curry blend that I just love. The sauce in this dish is great. It is full of flavor, but not heavy with a nice balance of tomato and coconut. The meatballs were actually my least favorite part of the dish. Because they are just meat without a binder or breadcrumb, they are a bit lacking in texture and the 20 minute cooking time is too long and made them tough. They had decent flavor, but I would bump them up with even more heat and I might add a handful of fresh breadcrumbs and a little milk or egg to bolster them up.

Overall, I liked the dish, served with some rice. Since I liked the sauce, I would probably make it again, but perhaps play with the meatballs or even sub them out for some chicken. A good weeknight option.

Thanks for stopping by. I am thinking about my next theme (honestly) and am hoping to start up with something new next week. Maybe I will start pulling my many cookbooks off the shelf and make some of the recipes from all of them. That could be fun.  Stay tuned!

Meatball Curry

Ingredients

Meatballs:
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 green Serrano chile, minced
  • 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
  • Kosher salt
Curry:
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil or canola oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown or black mustard seeds
  • 4 shallots, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 (14.5 oz can) petite diced tomatoes, preferably no salt added
  • 1 (14-ounce can) full-fat coconut milk
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice (about half a lime)

Directions

  1. For the meatballs: In a large bowl, mix the ground beef, chile, ginger, cilantro and 1 teaspoon salt together using your hands until just combined. Roll into 16 meat balls (I use my 2 Tbsp cookie dough scoop and it gave me exactly 16 meatballs) Set aside.
  2. For the curry: In a large skillet over medium-high heat, warm the coconut oil until nearly smoking. Add the mustard seeds, covering the pan with a lid so you don’t get popping seeds all over you.
  3. When the spluttering subsides, add the shallots, garlic and ginger and cook until golden brown. Then add the ground coriander, cumin and cayenne pepper. Stir, and cook 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes and cook until they start to break down, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the coconut milk, 1/2 cup of water, 1/2 teaspoon salt and bring to boil. Turn down to a simmer and add the meatballs. Simmer until the meatballs are cooked through, about 10 minutes, giving them a flip part way through for even cooking.
  5. To finish, add the cilantro and lime juice. Mix gently, and then taste for seasoning.
  6. Serve over rice.

meatball-curry
Meatball Curry

Ten Canadian Provinces of New Recipe Tuesday – Week Nine – Saskatchewan – Cabbage Roll (Golumpki) Casserole

Welcome to Week Nine of the Ten Canadian Provinces of New Recipe Tuesday! This week we explore the province of Saskatchewan, the final prairie province. I will admit that this week was a hard one. Saskatchewan is one of those places that does not necessarily have its own uniqueness in the culinary world, but it is known for something, and that is the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

The history of this now famous Canadian law enforcement group dates back to the late 1800s, when parliament saw a need for a national police force to enforce the law in Canada’s newly acquired western territories. They were originally called the North West Mounted Police, and their role grew in importance as settlers moved into aboriginal territories. They were eventually renamed with the “Royal” title in 1904 by King Edward VII. Their headquarters and today’s training facilities are located in Regina, and their role within Canada includes organized crime, terrorism, illegal drugs, economic crimes and anything that threatens Canada’s national borders.

When I went looking for a recipe, I found that one area of culinary focus is the large Ukrainian population within the province. I am actually quite familiar with many of the dishes, including pierogies and golumpkis.  So this was a hard one, because I have made many of these dishes before. So difficult that I finally gave up! Yep. I got nothing.

But alas, I did make a dish that I love and perhaps it will be new to you. It takes the traditional cabbage roll, aka golumpki, and makes it into a weekday dish by eliminating the long effort to roll the cabbage and instead makes it into a casserole. All the ingredients are still there; you just combine everything together and bake it in a casserole dish. It is super simple and really delicious. I will give full credit of this recipe to my mother in law. Although she is French Canadian, she married a Polish man and learned how to make the dishes he liked. She made this for me many years ago and I got the recipe from her. Thanks mom.

cabbage-roll-casserole
Cabbage Roll (Golumpki) Casserole

I really hope you give this a try, and don’t think poorly of me that I did not make something new in my kitchen. Sometimes, there just isn’t enough to work with and you have to go to the family book for inspiration.

Thanks for stopping by. I am going to wrap up Canada with my missed week in New Brunswick, then on to something new. Thoughts on what to do next? Please share!

Cabbage Roll Casserole

Ingredients

  • 8 cups chopped cabbage
  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 1 ½ lbs ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2-11 oz cans tomato soup
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the cabbage and par cook it for 5 minutes. Drain and return to the pot.
  3. In a large skillet, brown the meat and onion, draining off any excess fat when finished.
  4. Add the meat mixture, rice and soup to the cabbage and mix well. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Pour the casserole mixture into a 9×13 pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

golumpki-casserole
Cabbage Roll Casserole

Ten Canadian Provinces of New Recipe Tuesday – Week Seven – Prince Edward Island – Cottage Pie

Welcome to Week Seven of the Ten Canadian Provinces of New Recipe Tuesday! This week we explore the province of Prince Edward Island, the smallest of all the provinces. Located on the far East coast of Canada, its area is only 136 miles long and 6 to 36 miles wide. Up until 1995, the only way to get to PEI was by ferry. The opening of the Confederation Bridge now connects the island to New Brunswick. The toll is a whopping $45.00.

For my book loving folks, you may already know that Prince Edward Island was the home of author Lucy Maud Montgomery, who wrote about the province in her 1908 book Anne of Green Gables. The house that inspired the book is located in Cavendish, and today is a national historic site open to visitors.

A good portion of the island is rural and its rich soil makes it the perfect place to grow potatoes. It is by far their largest cash crop, with over 89,000 acres planted annually. It is also famously known for its fresh seafood, especially lobster.

When I went looking for a recipe, there were plenty of seafood soups and stews, but since no one in the house loves fish, I decided to focus on potato instead. What I discovered was a dish that has its roots in Ireland (another potato growing island). The dish is called Cottage Pie, and is essentially Shepherd’s Pie made with ground beef. I learned that for the dish to be a Shepherd’s Pie, it need to be made with lamb (makes sense).

pei-cottage-pie
Prince Edward Island Cottage Pie

I liked the many seasonings that were in this filling, and also the use of a tomato base. It is very different from the Irish versions I have had before and I really liked it. My son tasted it and said ‘no thanks’ and headed to the freezer for a frozen pizza. Oh well. He isn’t a vegetable fan and mashed potatoes aren’t his thing either. I can’t believe he is part Irish and doesn’t like potatoes! Where did I go wrong?

I give this one an A-, mostly because it has what I would consider to be too many ingredients and I am the only one eating it. Not a whole house winner. Looks like I will be eating this for lunch for the next few days. If you are looking for something a little different on a cold winter night, give this one a try. Don’t be intimidated by the ingredient list. You probably have most of it in your pantry already. And you just might like it as much as I did.

Thanks for stopping by. See you next time in Quebec!

Cottage Pie

Ingredients

For the Potato Topping:

  • 3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and quartered (about 2 lbs)
  • 4 Garlic cloves, peeled
  • ½ cup milk
  • 3 tbsp soft butter
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • ¼ cup grated cheese of choice (I used cheddar)
  • 1 egg yolk

For the Filling:

  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • ½ large red pepper, chopped
  • ½ c. each frozen corn and frozen peas (or 1 cup mixed vegetables)
  • 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • ½ c beef broth
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
  • ½ tsp Tabasco
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • A pinch of each – ginger, cinnamon and coriander

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly grease an 8”x8” baking dish and set aside.
  2. Place the potatoes and garlic in a pot of lightly salted, cold water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 12-14 minutes or until tender. Drain.
  3. Rice or mash the potatoes and garlic. Add the milk, butter nutmeg and cheese. Beat the egg yolk slightly, and then add to the potato mixture. Combine well and season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  4. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil, then ground beef; cook until the meat is browned. Add onions and peppers; cook until tender.
  5. Drain off the fat, return skillet to heat and add in the remaining vegetables, broth, tomatoes, seasonings and spices. Simmer gently for 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Transfer mixture to baking dish and press it down. Top with the garlic mashed potatoes and lightly sprinkle paprika over top. Place the baking dish in oven and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

pei-cottage-pie2
Cottage Pie

Ten Canadian Provinces of New Recipe Tuesday – Week One – Alberta – Honey Garlic Beef Stir Fry

Welcome all! This week we start on our next culinary adventure. As you will recall, we finished up the United States Territories last week with Washington DC. It was all too appropriate that we ended there on Election Day, and it has been a most tumultuous week since.

During the very, very long election season, many people said that they would leave the country if Donald Trump was elected, and to that end, Canada seemed to be the country of choice. So I decided that our friends to the north were just beckoning me to explore them, so here we are on Week One of the Ten Canadian Provinces of New Recipe Tuesday. And yes, I know it’s Wednesday. My son had a dress rehearsal last night and I was helping out, so we didn’t even have dinner last night.

Before we focus on our first province, here is a little background on the country itself. The name Canada is actually a translation error. In 1535, some Huron-Iroquois Indians were giving directions to ‘Kanata’ to the European explorer Jacques Cartier. Cartier thought they were speaking of the entire land area, but in actuality, the word means ‘village’. Canada is the second largest country in land area, but its population is smaller than the state of California. Even with its small population, it is still one of the United States largest trading partners. The US is the only country to share a border with Canada a total of 5,525 miles (but there are no plans to build a wall). Did you know that Canada produces 80% of the world’s maple syrup? Yep. And of that, 91% of it is produced in Quebec. I’m thinking this may be why their flag is a maple leaf. And this one is my favorite factoid… Winnie the Pooh was inspired by a black polar bear at the London Zoo in Regent Park, but the bear was actually Canadian. His full name was Winnipeg.

Ok, on to the provinces. I am going to do these in alphabetical order because that is how I feel like doing it. No other reason than that. We begin week one with the Province of Alberta. Alberta is one of the western provinces of Canada. It is the fourth most populated with approximately 4.2 million people, and is the most populated of the three “prairie” provinces. It is bordered by British Columbia to the west and Saskatchewan to the east. It shares the US border with the state of Montana.

When researching recipes, I discovered that because this was a prairie state, they were known for several agricultural items, including wheat, beef cattle and honey. There weren’t a lot of recipes tied directly to the province, but I did find an interesting one that used two of these ingredients; beef and honey.

honey-garlic-beef-stirfry
Honey Garlic Beef Stir Fry

The recipe that I made is Honey Garlic Beef Stir Fry. This one is super simple and comes together in about the time it takes to make some rice to go with it. I was a little leery of making a stir fry dish that had honey in it, but the end result was pretty tasty. I do admit that it was a bit sweet, so I would probably drop the honey down to a 1/3 cup and maybe add some soy sauce or even fish sauce to even it out. But for a quick week night dinner, this one was pretty good and I might even make it again sometime. I am going to give it an A- with some potential to make it better.

Thanks for joining me on our new adventure. See you next week in British Columbia!

Honey Garlic Beef Stir Fry

Ingredients

  • ½ cup Honey
  • ¼ cup teriyaki sauce
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp Oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • ½ tsp hot sauce
  • 1 lb boneless sirloin steak, sliced against the grain in thin strips
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 1 lb bag of frozen stir fry vegetable blend

Directions

  1. Make the sauce by combining the first 6 ingredients in a bowl.
  2. In a separate bowl combine beef with ¼ cup reserved sauce.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch and water. Set aside
  4. Heat large non-stick skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add oil. When pan is hot, add the beef. Cook until outside of beef is cooked, about 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add the frozen vegetables and sauce. Bring sauce to a boil, cook, stirring constantly for 2-3 minutes until vegetables and beef are cooked through.
  6. Add cornstarch mixture. Cook, stirring constantly until thickened, about 1 minute. Serve immediately.

 

honey-garlic-beef-stir-fry
Honey Garlic Beef Stir Fry

Fifty States of New Recipe Tuesday – Week Forty Eight – Arizona – Beef Chimichanga

Welcome to week 48 of Fifty States of New Recipe Tuesday. This week we welcome the state of Arizona, who joined the union on Valentine’s Day, February 14th, 1912. I cannot believe we are at the last state of the 48 contiguous states! OMG! Can we really be only two more states away from completing this journey? Wow.

As we have learned last week, Arizona became its own territory when it was separated from New Mexico to allow both areas to create their own state constitutions and become states. Arizona was lightly populated at the time, and it was really not until the introduction of air conditioning and refrigeration after World War II that created a population boom to the dessert areas of the state. Today, Arizona is the sixth largest state in terms of population.

Arizona is known as the Grand Canyon State. Formed by the Colorado River over millions of years, Arizona’s Grand Canyon is 277 miles long, up to 18 miles wide and one mile deep. If you have never been there, you need to put it on your bucket list, and then make it happen. It is a magnificent sight that everyone should see.

When it comes to food in Arizona, there is (again) barely a discussion. It is all about the Chimichanga. The story of the chimichanga is believed to have originated in the nation’s oldest Mexican restaurant in continuous operation by the same family and is located in Tucson, Arizona. El Charro café opened in 1922 by owner Tia Monica Flin. The story goes that one day she was making one of her famous beef tacos and accidentally dropped the burro into hot oil. As the oil splashed up, she began to curse, but there were children within earshot, so instead she shouted “Chimichanga”, which translates to “thingamajig”.

az-beef-chimichanga2
Arizona Beef Chimichanga

Now I don’t know if this story is really true, but it is pretty cool and the dish is extremely popular throughout Arizona. It is so popular that there is currently a drive to make the chimichanga the official state food of Arizona, who currently does not have one. I think it would be a nice choice.

As with all dishes of this sort, there are thousands of different versions, so I set out to find one that I would personally like. I opted not to do a pulled pork or beef style, mostly because it would be a whole day process and it wasn’t a taste choice I prefer. I opted to go with an interesting take on a ground meat version, which adds chorizo into the mix for some nice authentic flavor. I am also a big fan of refried beans in all this Mexican flare, so my version has beans as well.

I have never actually had a chimichanga before and definitely have never attempted to make one, but I have to say that they came out great and were easier than I expected. I really liked the crunchy tortilla outside and the tasty filling inside. Adding your own toppings makes it personal to your own taste.

Since they are fried, I will probably not jump into making these part of my regular dinner rotation, but they were pretty yummy and maybe when I am in a fried food mood someday I will pull the fryer out and make them again. I give the recipe a solid A.

Have a great week everyone and thanks for stopping by. See you next week in Alaska!

az-beef-chimichanga4
Chimichanga

Recipe for Beef Chimichangas:

Ingredients

6 oz chorizo (you want the soft kind, not the smoked sausage style)
1 lb ground beef
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
½ tsp cumin
1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce
6 flour tortillas (10 in)
1 can (16 oz) refried beans
1 c Monterrey Jack cheese
Vegetable oil for frying
Sour cream, Salsa and Guacamole

Instructions:

Remove and discard the casing from chorizo. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Crumble chorizo into skillet. Brown 6 to 8 minutes, stirring to separate meat.

Crumble ground beef into skillet. Brown over medium heat for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring to separate meat. Add the onion, garlic and cumin; cook and stir 4 minutes or until onion is soft. Drain off and discard fat.

Stir in tomato sauce. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Uncover skillet; increase heat to medium. Cook and stir 5 minutes or until most of liquid has evaporated and meat is still moist.

Soften and warm tortillas.

Spread a couple tablespoons of the refried bean, then add ¼ cup meat mixture on bottom half of 1 tortilla; spread to within 1-1/2 inches of bottom and side edges. Fold in side edges, then the bottom edge of tortilla up over filling, then roll up to completely enclose filling. Secure top with a wooden toothpick. Repeat with remaining tortillas, beans and meat mixture.

Preheat oven to 300°F. Add oil to a deep fryer (or 1 inch oil in deep, heavy skillet over medium-high heat) to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with paper towels.

Fry 1 to 2 chimichangas at a time in oil 2 to 3 minutes until golden on all sides, turning occasionally. Remove with tongs; drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with some of the cheese and place in warm in oven on prepared baking sheet.

Remove toothpicks before serving. Serve with Sour cream, Salsa and Guacamole.

az-beef-chimichanga3
Arizona Beef Chimichanga

Fifty States of New Recipe Tuesday – Week Forty Five – Utah – Pastrami Burger with Fry Sauce

Welcome to week 45 of Fifty States of New Recipe Tuesday. This week we welcome the state of Utah, who joined the union on January 4, 1896. The state of Utah had a long path to statehood that dates back as far as 1848. The region was settled by Mormons in early 1847, when the land was still part of Mexico. After the Treaty of Guadalupe was signed in 1848, leaders of the church hosted a convention and constructed a constitution that would create an enormous state, which they wanted to call Deseret. The area would have included Utah, most of Nevada and Arizona, and parts of southern California, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon, and Idaho. They elected Brigham Young as governor and sent Almon Babbitt to Washington D.C. as their state representative. But the U.S. House of Representatives would not give him a seat.

Washington never wanted to create a state that large, and when things began to heat up in the south over slavery, they divided the territory into the New Mexico and Utah territories. This allowed them to vote to either be a slave or non slave territory.

From 1852 until 1894, the leaders of the Mormon Church wrote and submitted state constitutions numerous times, but the federal government had passed laws that outlawed polygamy, so each time they were rejected. During this time, the territory was further divided and the surrounding states were accepted into statehood. It was not until 1894 that Congress passed the Enabling Act allowing Utah to submit yet another constitution for acceptance into statehood, but it clearly stated that polygamy must be illegal.

In March of 1895, Mormon and non-Mormon delegates met and framed a new constitution. It was ratified and sent to Washington. Finally, in January of 1896, President Cleveland proclaimed that Utah was a state.

In searching for a recipe this week, I discovered that Jell-O is Utah’s state dessert. At one time, Utahns ate more Jell-O than any other state, and their favorite flavor was lime. I discovered that there are old Jell-O recipes that mix in all sorts of things, some of them pretty nasty. Things like meat or tomatoes. Yuck. Seriously, who eats this stuff? Not going down that road.

What I finally decided on is a very popular burger recipe that was created in Salt Lake City in the 1970s called the Pastrami Burger. It’s pretty much just that; a burger that is then topped with pastrami. And it is always served with another Utah creation, Fry Sauce. Fry sauce is a mayonnaise/ketchup concoction that also has pickle juice and sometimes relish. It is sort of like Thousand Island (although no one is Utah would say that!).

pastrami burger with fry sauce
Pastrami Burger and Fry Sauce

The history of the Pastrami Burger grew out of a large Greek immigrant population, so influential in the Mormon state that even Chinese restaurants serve baklava. The Pastrami Burger was the creation of Crown Burger, owned by Manuel Katsanevas. He admits that he was influenced by the California fusion scene of the late 1960s, and especially a place called the Hat in Southern California that served up burgers alongside pastrami sandwiches. He decided to combine the two and it was an instant success.

A Salt Lake City restaurant called Arctic House claims to be the creator of Fry Sauce, although combining mayonnaise and ketchup is far from a novel idea. Regardless, it’s pretty yummy and I am a big fan. If you have never had it, I highly recommend you ask for a side of mayo and stir a bit of it into your ketchup the next time you have an order of fries.

Overall, I am going to give this one a B. Although an interesting idea, I didn’t think that the pastrami added a whole lot to the burger, and frankly, some crispy bacon is hands down the better way to go any day of the week. The Fry Sauce, that’s a solid A, because I have always been a fan and now I have a name for it. Would I make a pastrami burger again? Probably not. But it was interesting learning about it and the state of Utah.

Have a great week everyone and thanks for stopping by. See you next week in Oklahoma!

Pastrami Burger
Pastrami Burger with Fry Sauce

Recipe for Pastrami Burger with Fry Sauce:

Ingredients

1 ½ pounds ground beef
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper
8 ounces pastrami, thinly sliced
8 slices American cheese
4 sesame-seed hamburger buns, split, buttered and toasted
Utah Fry Sauce, recipe follows
Shredded Lettuce
Sliced red onion
Sliced tomato

Utah Fry Sauce:

½ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup ketchup
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 teaspoons dill relish or dill pickle juice

Instructions

Loosely shape the ground beef into 4 equal patties. Sprinkle each side of the patties generously with salt and pepper. Create a small well in the center of each patty, using your thumb, to help your burger cook evenly.

Heat a griddle pan over high heat. Add the pastrami and cook until browned and crisp on both sides, 2-3 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.

Add the burger patties and cook until browned on each side, about 3 ½ minutes per side. Top each burger with 2 slices of the cheese and continue cooking until the cheese is melted.

Slather 1 tablespoon of Utah Fry Sauce on each side of the buns. Add lettuce, tomato and onion, then the burger and top with pastrami.

For the Fry Sauce – Mix together the mayonnaise, ketchup, sugar, vinegar and relish/pickle juice in a small bowl. Adjust the seasoning to taste. Refrigerate until ready to use. Yield: 3/4 cup.

Pastrami Burger UT
Pastrami Burger with Fry Sauce