I was on a no-red-meat and no-ground-meat kick for a while. I just couldn't get past the idea of chewing on a steak or a burger (be it ground beef, turkey, or chicken). Last week, that passed and I bought a steak and it was good. (*enter holy music*)
As I wrote yesterday, I've been reading This Week's Menu and recently printed out a whole bunch of recipes I want to try. When the hubby asked if we had a plan for dinner, I realized - yes, we did! This Week's Menu to the rescue!
So after work, I stopped by Trader Joe's to pick up ground beef, whole wheat buns, bacon, and potatoes. I already had at home everything else necessary for Cheeseburgers with Oven Fries and Corn with Bacon and Shallots. Just typing that out has made me start to drool, it sounds so damn good (probably also because I woke up late this morning and did not have time to pack lunch so I just have fruit for lunch today).
Confession: making burgers makes me nervous. If I bite into a burger that is more than the palest pink or, god forbid, actually red (*shudder*), I will gag and will not be able to continue eating dinner. So I fear under-cooking burgers but, of course, I also fear OVER-cooking them since a dry, hockey puck of a burger is just as gross as a bloody one (to me). However, I will now admit - dinner turned out GREAT! I have never made a better burger and even the fries turned out good (I kind of suck at making potatoes, too, which is shameful in my family). Even the hubby commented on how juicy and tasty the burgers were. Score! The secret to my success (i.e. the recipes I borrowed):
For the burgers: I took 1 lb of ground beef (I used 80/20 because it was the cheapest) and mixed it with about 1/4 cup of Worcestershire sauce, 1t of onion powder, and one egg. I formed it into four patties and cooked them for five minutes on each side and then one minute more as I added American cheese and let it melt. (Note: I cooked them in a skillet and DID NOT touch them the whole time they cooked, except to flip them. DO NOT touch burgers and definitely NEVER press them down, okay? Okay. Burgers may intimidate me, but I know that much. No pressing.)
For the fries: I took 4 russet potatoes (four because that's what came in the bag - I probably would have just used two if I could have bought them individually - hubby will eat the leftovers anyway). I sliced them into steak fry shape, poured some olive oil (regular) in a lidded bowl, sprinkled some salt and pepper in it, added the fries to the bowl, drizzled more olive oil and salt and pepper on top, put the lid on, and shook gently to coat all the fries. I then laid them out, single file, on a baking sheet and baked them for 20 minutes, flipped them, and then 20 minutes more.
For the corn: I doubled Andrea's recipe for this since it was all the corn we had left and I knew hubby would (once again) enjoy the leftovers. So, I took 8 slices of bacon (they were very thin), chopped them up, and cooked them until they were crispy, then laid the bacon out on a paper-towel-covered plate to drain. I wiped out the pan, leaving some bacon fat, and then added the shallots, cooking them until they were soft. Add the corn, cook until starting to brown. Then add the bacon, mix it all up, remove to bowl, add salt and pepper to taste.
Ta-da (and, yes, I swirl my ketchup). But, seriously, MAKE this dinner if this is your kind of food. It wasn't difficult and it was super yummy. I would love to try to make the burgers on a grill sometime (um, when we get one). Tonight the hubby and I are going out to dinner and then to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince! (Have I mentioned my Harry Potter fixation? Have I? I have? Okay, good, just want to make sure.) So we're off the hook for home cooking tonight, but I think some more TWM meals might be in store for future evenings... stay tuned!