Try these Grilled Bacon Cheeseburger Meatballs for a real treat.
1 lb. lean ground beef
2 tsp. steak seasoning (Any brand that’s good on steak will work.)
1/2 tsp. fresh-ground black pepper
6 slices very crisp bacon, crumbled (We used pre-cooked bacon and crisped it in the microwave, then blotted off the extra fat.)
1/4 cup chopped dill pickle (Don’t use pickle relish; that will make the meatballs too moist.)
4 oz. Swiss cheese, cut into very small cubes (Or use other cheese of your choice.)
olive oil for brushing meatballs
burger sauce or fry sauce for dipping meatballs
Crumble the beef into a plastic bowl and sprinkle with the steak seasoning and black pepper; add the egg. Crisp the bacon and crumble, dice dill pickles, and cut the cheese into small cubes. Add the crumbled bacon, diced pickles, and cubes of cheese to the ground beef and use your hands to gently combine ingredients. (Don’t over-mix; that will make the meatballs tough.)
Use a 1/4 cup measuring cup to scoop out the beef mixture and then form it into a meatball, tucking the cheese cubes inside as you make the meatballs. Put formed meatballs on a small baking sheet and put them in the fridge to chill for 30-40 minutes. This will help the meatballs keep their shape on the hot grill.
When you’re ready to cook, put the grilling pan on top of the grill grates to heat while you preheat grill to medium-high heat. Remove meatballs from the fridge and brush on both sides with a little olive oil to help prevent sticking. Put meatballs on the grilling pan to cook, turning them about every 2 minutes so they’re getting browned on all sides. Start checking for doneness after about 15 minutes. (We used an instant-read meat thermometer to check for an internal temperature of at least 160F/102C. If you don’t have a thermometer like that and don’t want to buy one, you can cut open a meatball and make sure the inside is cooked through.)
Serve hot, with dipping sauce for dipping meatballs if desired.
Place turkey wings and onion in a casserole dish; sprinkle seasoned salt, poultry seasoning, black pepper, and garlic on both sides of each wing. Pour 1/2 cup water into the casserole dish. Cover casserole dish.
Bake in the preheated oven until browned, 1 hour.
Stir cream of mushroom soup and 1 cup water together in a bowl; pour over turkey wings into casserole dish and return to oven, uncovered.
Make like a drunken pilgrim and wash down your turkey and stuffing with these festive whiskey drinks
Thanksgiving is indisputably the best holiday ever. There are no expensive gifts to buy, no ridiculous costumes to wear, no painting Easter eggs or buying quasi-legal fireworks. It’s purely about stuffing your face and uncorking some wine, drinking a few beers or mixing up cocktails. What’s not to love?
Fall Fashioned:A cider-y spin on the classic Old Fashioned, pictured above.
1 1/2 parts whiskey
2 parts apple cider
3/4 parts simple syrup
A few dashes of bitters
Directions: Add ingredients to rocks glass, muddle orange, add ice and stir.
Whiskey Harvest:Get pickled with pumpkin and maple flavors.
2 parts whiskey
2 dashes maple syrup
1/2 part pumpkin butter
Squeeze of a lemon wedge
Dash of allspice liqueur
Directions: Shake ingredients over ice until frosty. Strain into coupe glass.
Fired Up:An awesomely apple-centric take on the whiskey and ginger.
1.5 oz. whiskey
1 oz. Apple Juice
Top with Ginger Beer
Directions: Add liquids and garnish with apple slices (if you feel like it.)
Fish House Punch: Knock yourself out with this holiday party elixir.
2 parts whiskey
1 part dark rum
1 part brandy
2 1/2 parts tea
1 1/2 parts lemon syrup
2 parts sparkling wine
Directions: To make syrup, stir sugar into lemon juice and let sit for one hour, stirring occasionally until sugar dissolves. Shake remaining ingredients except sparkling wine over ice. Strain into punch glass or coupe. Top with sparkling wine.
Cider Sangria: Deliver an apple sangria kick to your Thanksgiving gobble-thon.
4 parts chardonnay (low-oak)
2/3 parts whiskey
1/3 parts parts apple brandy
1 1/2 parts pure apple cider
1/3 parts honey
Juice of one lime
Juice of one lemon
Directions: In pitcher, combine all ingredients besides apple wedge and citrus, then refrigerate. Before serving, add apple slices and citrus and mix well.
It has occurred to me that the single most consistent ingredient in the Great American Hamburger is testosterone.
The chest-thumping surrounding the making and cooking of burgers is matched only by that of chili in winter or barbecue in the South. This is especially true of men who have grown up eating wretched fast-food patties or had mothers who made, as Eddie Murphy so memorably put it, “brontosaurus burgers.”
There is something validating about being able to rectify a childhood wrong, as a bad burger seems to be in America.
Ideas about the “perfect burger recipe” are as varied as there are minds to contemplate such weighty matters.
I’ve seen complicated equations involving exact percentages of this cut of meat or that one, including such horrors as including hanger steak or skirt steak in a burger. These are noble cuts, not something to be ground into a Wednesday gut filler. Might as well grind a ribeye. And yes, I am certain at least one person reading this has done so.
Meat-to-fat ratio is a big area of contention, too. So is the timeless debate over whether to salt the meat as you make the patty or just on the outside. A few errant souls even add things to the meat itself, which to purists is anathema. (I am one of those souls: My venison burger with mushrooms recipe includes powdered, dried mushrooms in the patty itself. So there.) To flip once or many times? Toast the bun or no?
Get into the Toppings War and you can have some fun, too. Cheese or no cheese? Cooked or raw onions? Is it nobler to use hothouse tomatoes on your burger in winter or not to do so, and by opposing this outrageous arrow against seasonality, end the debate forever? (Sorry, Hamlet. Had to.)
Well, here is where I stand.
I will preface all this by saying that this is, to me, a perfect burger. To you, it may not be. And you are free to believe so. That’s why this is America (or Canada, or wherever it is you happen to be reading this).
First: All burgers, venison or no, need fat. Period. My preferred ratio is 80 percent meat, 20 percent pork fat. I dislike beef tallow; it’s too waxy for me. Ditto for lamb fat, although that is a step up in my book.
Second: Grind your own if at all possible. This is the secret to virtually every great burger joint’s meat. Grinding your own takes less than 10 minutes (unless you are feeding an army), and gives you ultimate control over texture and composition. And in the world of venison burgers, this is what I’ve come to like best: Venison meat from the shoulder, ribs, neck or hind leg, ground with bacon ends. If you’ve never tried this, do it. It’s amazing. What’s more, I vary my grind. (Exact proportions are in the recipe below.) Why? Because it makes the burger taste more interesting.
Third: Gently patties must you make, young padawan. So Sayeth Yoda. These aren’t meatballs, folks. Think of a burger like a you would a crabcake, which is supposed to just barely hold together. It’s a fine line between perfect and too crumbly, but a dense, packed patty is depressing and somehow un-American.
Fourth: Salt only the outside of the burger, right before you cook or even when you flip the patty. This one matters. Salt denatures proteins, which is why sausage binds so well and, incidentally, has a very different texture from a good burger. Add salt to the meat mixture and you have a sausage patty, not a hamburger. And yes, people have done experiments proving this. (As for my bacon ends, which contain salt, I use them only when I grind and cook, not when I grind lots of burger in advance and freeze it.)
Fifth: Grilled burgers are only better when there’s wood or charcoal involved. Yes, I cook burgers over gas grills, and they are nice, but not qualitatively better than those done in a pan inside. Unless of course you add smoke chips to your gas grill. Meat + woodsmoke = awesome.
Sixth: Flip once, or several times. It apparently doesn’t matter in the final judgment. And again, yes, people have done experiments proving this. I flip only once because I want a hard crust on the outside of the burger, which I find helps hold it together.
Seventh: Rest thine burgers. It’s the little-known 12th Commandment, lost in the making of Mel Brooks’ History of the World Part I. (The 11th Commandment has something to do with Republicans…) Why? Remember the original name of a hamburger: hamburger steak. You rest steaks right? Right? Please tell me you do…
Eighth: Let all else be free. Let your burger freak flag fly when it comes to toppings. Just let the meat be the star, OK?
Oh, and obviously all this applies to burgers made from any other sort of meat.
Prep Time: 30mins
Cook Time: 15mins
Total Time: 45mins
Keep in mind that what’s important here is the technique and the grind, not so much my additional ingredients. Of course, I love my venison burgers like this, so I am biased. But so long as you follow general guidelines on toppings: mix something rich (cheese) with something sharp (tomato) and something slightly bitter or cleansing (lettuce or sorrel leaves) and a touch of sweet (ketchup) and you will be in good shape.
Condiment of your choice (ketchupmustard, remoulade, mayo, etc)
Make sure the meat and bacon are cold. Cut the venison into chunks that will fit into your grinder. Do the same for the bacon. Mix the two together roughly so you can add a bit of each into the grinder as you go. Grind 1/2 to 2/3 of the mixture coarsely and the rest with the fine die. NOTE: If you are grilling your venison burgers, flip this so you grind 2/3 of the mix fine and only 1/3 coarse — the reason is because grilled burgers tend to cook better and stay juicier when the grind is fine.
Make between 4 and 6 patties, depending on how large you want your burgers. Form the patties with only as much force as absolutely needed — you want the patties to hold together only loosely. Make them about 1/2 to 1 inch thick. Use your thumb to press an indentation into the center of each patty: This prevents the burgers from turning spherical when you cook them. Set the burgers aside.
Heat the butter in a frying pan over medium-high heat. When it’s hot, add the sliced onion and cook until it’s done to your liking. Some people like juicy onion with a little char on the edges, some people prefer to go the full caramelized onion route. When finished, put the onions in a bowl so you can have them ready.
I prefer grilled burgers, so I’ll go through that method. Heat your grill on high and be sure to scrape down the grates with a wire brush. Only salt your burgers right before you cook them, and if you are salt-sensitive you might not need to with these because of the bacon. Place the patties on the grill and cook them without disturbing them (with the grill cover open) for 3 to 5 minutes, depending on how well done you like your burgers. Flip and cook for the same amount on the other side. I prefer 3 minutes per side with a really hot grill.
When you flip the burgers, grind some black pepper over them, then spoon a little caramelized onion on each one if you’d like. With about 90 seconds to go on the second side, lay the cheese on top of the onions and cover the grill until the burger’s ready. If you like toasted buns, toast them on the grill in this last 90 seconds. When everything’s done, move the burgers and buns to a sheet tray or plate so the meat can rest for 5 minutes, while you build the burgers.
You can do this any way you want, but I start with a green thing, then some ketchup or mayo or whatever, then the burger patty that has the onions and cheese already on it, topped with a slice of tomato (or roasted red peppeand finally some more of whatever condiment I happen to be using. My method is just how I do things; you can do anything you’d like.
The Gin and Tonic is a classic cocktail. People hear about it before they ever find out gin is even alcoholic. First imbibed by British soldiers in the early 1800s, the G & T began as a way to choke down their daily dose of quinine tonic water. They quickly realized that the combination not only helped make the tonic water more palatable, but it also gave them a nice buzz. There’s no disputing the fact that the drink remains a bar staple to this day, but we aren’t traveling to and from India on a naval ship and malaria isn’t sitting in ambush for us on our daily commute. So why not just enjoy gin straight?
Bruichladdich has been making Scotch since 1881. It wasn’t until 2004 that Master Distiller Jim McEwan started seriously thinking about making a gin at the famous Islay distillery. In 2010, with help from local two local botanists, McEwan finally distilled this crisp, flavorful gin packed full with twenty-two herbs, plants, flowers and botanicals for a unique taste that could only come from the sheep-filled island off the coast of Scotland.
Another Scottish brand, Hendrick’s first showed up on the market in 1999 and quickly became one of the most popular gin brands in the world. What sets Hendrick’s apart from the competition is the flavor. After juniper and the other usual botanicals, Hendrick’s is also flavored with Bulgarian rose and cucumber to give it a sweet, floral flavor that is just as easy to sip on its own as it is to mix into your favorite cocktails. Hendrick’s is also super into the cucumber stuff too, as it’s heavily featured on their brand site, so cutting one up and throwing it in the glass probably isn’t a bad move.
Produced in Portland, Oregon, Aviation American Gin falls under the category of “American Dry Gin.” It’s only been on the market since 2006, but has already found a strong following in the bartending world. The gin is flavored with juniper, orange peel, coriander, cardamom, sarsaparilla, lavender and anise to give it the taste of a classic gin that is worthy of a glass with a few ice cubes and an easy chair. You also better be in Oregon if you want to pick up a bottle for yourself. Availability doesn’t seem to have spread outside that specific Pacific Northwest state, so a road trip may be in order.
Part of what makes this gin special is the use of foraged botanicals from the Scottish Highlands. These include Bog Myrtle, Rowan Berry, Heather, Coul Blush Apple and Dandelion Leaf. It almost hits a sort of hunter-gatherer distiller feel. Like you’re the first person to discover putting a bunch of leafy stuff in old fruit juice makes you feel dizzy. This spicy, crisp gin is a combination of fruity, floral with a dry finish worthy of your most beloved London Dry gin.
Tanqueray is one of the most well-known gin brands in the world. They have distilled many different, special gin varieties over the years and if we’re ranking them, No. Ten should be at the top of the list. First introduced in 2000, No. Ten is distilled four times and has a huge citrus presence that was made for a martini, but is perfect on its own as well.
Founded in 1999, Martin Miller’s Gin puts a unique spin on gin flavor. The distillation is split between two different methods. The first method consists of distilling juniper, botanicals and dried lime peel. After, lemon and bitter orange peel are distilled before both are combined together to create this extremely drinkable gin. They also use Icelandic spring water when creating the final product, so we’ll go ahead and say this might be one of the cleanest sounding gins ever made. Its ingredient list reads like an organic cleaner commercial. Take that as you will, but we don’t mean it in a bad way.
You might not expect a delicious dry gin to come out of Germany, specifically the Black Forest. With a name like the Black Forest, the only thing we expect to come out of there is German Voldemort. But after it was launched in 2010, Monkey 47 won numerous awards including a gold medal at the International Wine and Spirit Competition in 2011, so either Monkey 47 is going for the long con on evil or they’re genuinely making good gin. The flavor is sweet, fairly juniper heavy with floral and citrus notes with a subtle hint of pepper to finish.
This famous gin has been produced the same way since 1793, confirming our belief that alcohol recipes are one of the few good holdouts from the 18th Century. It was a popular choice by British sailors in the 1800s who mixed it with quinine tonic water and limes in the earliest recipes for gin and tonic, drastically reducing their chances of getting malaria, scurvy, and invited to a lame party. The original strength has a large juniper profile along with a zesty citrus finish that is perfect for a classic naval-inspired cocktail or on its own in a glass with a handful of ice.
The third gin made by Anchor, Old Tom is a classic pot-still distilled gin made with juniper and myriad botanicals that are formulated to create a sweeter, less dry gin. The sweetness mostly comes from the addition of star anise and licorice as well as the surprising inclusion of stevia. Sipping Old Tom on a fall day is our recommended form of enjoyment, but you can enjoy it any day. If you’re feeling rebellious, maybe have one outside on a warm summer morning. Not enough to feel it, just enough to connect with the locale.
Made at London’s Thames Distillers, Ford’s gin is a collaborative effort between Simon Ford of the 86 Co. and Master Distiller Charles Maxwell. Like all proper gins, the first notable flavor is juniper. This is followed by lemon and grapefruit peels as well as bitter orange and a medley of flowers and spices. So what we’ve learned overall is not all gins taste like the cheap stuff that comes in plastic and sometimes not even the expensive stuff that’s just a liquid Christmas tree. Sometimes people put actual flavors in their spirit.
1. Prepare the Short Ribs: Heat the vegetable oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Season the short ribs liberally with salt and pepper, then add half of the short ribs to the skillet until a brown crust forms on all sides, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Remove the short ribs to a 9×13-inch baking dish and repeat with the remaining short ribs. All of the short ribs should now be in the baking dish in a single layer.
2. Reduce the heat to low and add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic to the now-empty skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetable are very soft and lightly browned, about 20 minutes. Add the wine and thyme and bring to a boil over high heat. Pour the hot mixture over the short ribs and allow to cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate overnight, turning once.
3. The next morning, remove the short ribs from the marinade and place in a 6-quart slow cooker. Transfer the marinade to a medium saucepan, add the chicken stock, and bring to a boil over high heat. Pour over the short ribs, place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
4. Prepare the Grits: About 30 minutes before planning to eat, begin to prepare the grits. Bring the water to a boil, then slowly stir in grits. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, until thick and creamy, about 20 to 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter and shredded cheeses until both are melted and incorporated into the grits. Season with salt and pepper.
“Korean” plus “fried” plus “chicken” sets my expectations for greatness. Especially lately, when my hot sauce of the moment is Gochujang. I can clearly see an evolution in my palette having first embraced Sriracha, then sambal, and now this richer, spicier version that is deepened with a funky fermented bean paste.
I came home with chicken wings the other day despite my historical eye rolling when my dad did the same, yelling “Maru! I picked up dinner!” The difference here is that these would be an appetizer, and at least one vegetable, and likely several, would also grace the plate.
I wanted something super crisp that would be glazed with a punch of flavor and enough heat to make you keep eating, but not so much that your lips felt like Blinky the Clown. So I settled on a mixture of corn starch and pulverized rice crispies. The sauce would be Gochujang blended with something sweet, sesame and maybe even citrus. And there would be fresh green in the form of cilantro and green onion.
I think I succeeded. The first batch came out a tad dark, even though they still tasted great. But the cooler oil in the second batch allowed for nice browning, and the coating had a serious crunch — even several hours later when I snuck a couple more, cold, from the fridge.
Makes 20 pieces
10 chicken wings, cut in half, wing tips reserved for stock
4 tablespoons dry sherry
2 tablespoons mirin
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon salt
1/4 cup peanut or other neutral oil
1/4 cup corn starch
1 1/4 cups puffed rice cereal like Rice Krispies
Oil for frying
1/4 cup Gochujang
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon sherry
2 tablespoons soy
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon grated ginger
Cilantro, for garnish
Green onion, for garnish
Mix all chicken ingredients (through oil) together and marinate up to an hour. Pulse 1 cup rice cereal in a spice grinder or crush in a plastic bag until you have a mix of fine powder and some larger pieces. Mix with corn starch. Drain chicken, reserving marinade.
Mix all glaze ingredients and set aside.
Pour oil into a tall pot so you have enough to fry several wings, but without going beyond the halfway mark of the pot. Heat to just shy of 350°. Toss wings with starch and cereal mixture, adding back a little bit of marinade to help the mixture stick. Fry several at a time for 6 to 8 minutes each. Drain on paper towels. Brown remaining 1/4 cup rice cereal in a teaspoon of oil.
Toss wings with glaze, garnish with cilantro, green onions, and rice cereal, and eat right away.
Chicken wings are becoming more and more popular and done more often on the grill. Use these tips and techniques to get great Barbecue Chicken Wings.
Barbecue chicken wings are so popular nowadays you can have them at almost any bar or restaurant. Chicken wings were first served at a bar in Buffalo New York in 1964 hence the name ‘Buffalo Wings’.
There are so many variations of chicken wings from hot and spicy to sweet and savoury. They are normally served as a tasty appetizer or delicious snack.
Preparation – Chicken Wings
Try purchasing chicken wings that have already been cut and prepared and had the wing tips removed. Otherwise you will need to do it yourself which is really time consuming. Simply remove the tips of the wings with a knife. The remaining piece needs to be cut in half.
Once you have cut the chicken wings rinse them under cold water and pat dry with a paper towel. When it comes to marinating and seasoning you can use your imagination and try many different flavours.
Use marinates like honey, hot sauce, lemon juice, brown sugar and BBQ sauce.
Barbecuing – Chicken Wings
Pre-heat your grill to a medium heat and lightly coat the grill grid with some olive oil or cook and spray.
They don’t take long to cook normally done between 6 – 10 minutes. Keep turning the wings over frequently to prevent them from burning.
Grill the wings the way you like some prefer them to be medium or quite crispy. Keep basting a marinate over to prevent them from drying out.
Serve your wings straight away after grilling, as this is when they are the most delicious.
Let us know what you think after trying this recipe. Your response matters to us.
Juicy, sweet and savory, these short ribs tocos will take your Taco Tuesday game to the next level. Perfect for pairing with a cold beer but (more importantly) slow cooked in red wine, these babies are the complete package.
Makes 4 servings
4 8-oz cuts bone-in beef short ribs 2 tbsps butter 4 cloves garlic, minced 1 bottle red wine (we recommend and Cabernet) 4 cups vegetable stock 1 large onion, chopped
Corn tortillas 1 cup pickled onions
Fresh cilantro, chopped 3 limes, cut into quarters
Salsa of your choice
HEAT oven to 325°F.
MELT butter in an oven-safe cast-iron skillet with a lid. Add the meat and cook until just browned on all sides. Remove the meat and set aside, then add garlic to the pan to soften for about 1 minute.
POUR in the wine and bring to a gentle boil. Cook until reduced to about 8 oz and then place the meat back in the skillet. Add vegetable stock and onion. Reduce heat and bring to a simmer, then cover and transfer to the oven. Cook for about 3 hours or until meat falls off the bone.
SHRED the meat into thin pieces. Cover and set aside.
WARM tortillas on the stove and cover each one to retain heat until ready to use.
DOUBLE-UP each tortilla and fill with a hearty serving of short ribs. Top with pickled onions, cilantro and squirt of lime and dash of salsa.