Friday, May 29, 2015

Smashed Onion Burger, Smashed Potato and Veggies

May 29 2015

I found this recipe on and was courtesy of Sid’s restaurant located somewhere in Oklahoma.
It’s more of a method than a recipe and about the fastest burgers I ever cooked!

I was tired from mowing yesterday so spent a lazy day; hoed the weeds in my garden, watered some flowers and sprayed some weeds with round up.

Time for supper I heated my Weber Spirit to 400 deg. with Grillen Grates. I made two loosely packed balls from the ground chuck, about tennis ball size, and sliced some Vidalia onion thin for my burger, my wife just wanted cheese on hers. I nuked two small red potatoes in the microwave for two minutes, and then smashed to brown on the grill. I sprayed two buns with some olive oil to toast on the grill.

I had some Asian style veggies for a side, wild rice, edamame and carrots. When my grill was ready I put the veggies in the microwave and they would be ready when the burgers were done.

I put the potatoes on first and then the burgers and mashed them thin, closed the lid and after 1 minute added some Penzey’s 4S salt to the burgers and potatoes and the onions to my burger. I closed the lid for a minute then smashed the onions in my burger and flipped both. Closed the lid for a minute then added some cheese to the burgers and placed the buns in to toast. Closed the lid for another minute, then placed the buns on the burgers and took all inside to serve. I didn’t get many pics but as fast as they cooked this ole man was lucky to get any!

All was delicious and love the onions cooked with the burger. I added some mustard to mine and the wife had mustard and dill pickles in hers. Next time I would like two with the cheese in the middle. Sid’s used American cheese but I used some Sargento’s 4State shredded cheddar. I really prefer sliced Swiss but didn’t have any.

On the grill

About done

My supper

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Skirt Steak Kabobs and Smoked Cauliflower Steak

May 27 2015

I can’t remember the last time I did a skirt steak. I went to my butchers this am and all they had was a frozen one. I ask for a small one and they had a one pound one so thought I could get it marinated and thawed by 6:00 for supper. I was going to do kabobs with it. My marinade was from Michael Symon, white balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, a little dried rosemary, Penzey’s roasted garlic, and a pinch of red pepper flakes. I got it in the marinade at 11:00 am and in the fridge. It was still frozen but hoped I could get it unrolled, cut and back in the marinade by 3:00 pm.

I did some grass trimming and at 3:00 I checked the skirt steak I had turned once and it started to unfold. I helped it by doing in the microwave, two minutes on power 3. It was just enough I got it unfolded and cut into 6 strips for the kabobs and back in the marinade.

My side was going to be a cauliflower steak seasoned with Penzey’s sandwich sprinkle and topped with some Sargento’s 4 State shredded cheddar at the end. I planned to smoke it on my Traeger for 45 minutes and then sear on the Weber Spirit Grillen Grates after the kabobs were done.

I cut the steak from the center of a head of cauliflower; sprayed it with a little olive oil, seasoned and on the smoker at 250 deg. I made up my kabobs; patting dry and sprayed with a little olive oil ready to go on my Weber gas grill. The cauliflower had been in about 20 minutes and upped the temp to 280 deg.

I had my Weber heating up to 400 deg. and some dark clouds were in the north then heard thunder. When the cauliflower had been on for 45 minutes I brought the kabobs out and on the Grillen Grates; it was sprinkling rain. I decided to just let the cauliflower finish on the smoker. I did the kabobs about 4 minutes per side and then removed and tented with foil. I added the cheese to the cauliflower and took the kabobs inside. In about 2 minutes the cheese was melted so took inside and served.

We had some garlic herb Italian bread and butter with the meal. The kabobs were delicious; a great marinade. I told my wife to be sure and cut it across the grain but it was tender enough it didn’t make any difference. The cauliflower was good, the wife liked it as was but next time I want it a little more done so would do at 300 deg. for 45 minutes and seared on the grill would be good. The marinade I will be using again.

Click here for skirt steak recipe

Frozen steak in marinade

Unrolled and cut for kabobs

Cauliflower ready to smoke

Kabobs ready for the grill

On the grill

Cauliflower done

My supper

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Broasted Chicken from Beer & Wine Depot

Sandman’s Beer & Wine Depot is one of our favorite places for carry out food when I don’t cook! Besides having a good choice of beer at the carry out they have some great food! They have the best chicken and pizza in town along with some good sandwiches and sides.

Whenever I want some crispy skin fried chicken; it is broasted chicken from Sandman’s, crispy skin and tender chicken without being greasy! Every Sunday he has 8 pieces of chicken for $6.50; it’s 2 each breasts, thighs, legs, and wings, you can’t beat that. We get pizzas a lot on Wednesdays when he has a special on their 14 inch pizzas.

When I went through to stock up on beer for the Memorial Day week-end Sandman gave me a Goose Island Summer Ale to try. I saved it for Sunday when we got his broasted chicken for dinner. It was a little hoppy for me but a good fresh taste.

Our daughter got home about supper time Saturday. We had chicken tacos and some left over rice. Our daughter in law and grandson came Sunday for supper. It was the broasted chicken from Sandman’s. The DIL did not want chicken so I made some blue crab salad for lettuce wraps. The crab salad was a pint of crab meat, mayonnaise, sour cream, celery, onions, salt and pepper. I had some Penzey’s sandwich sprinkle and Old Bay seasoning at the table. It needed either one and could have had some acid like lemon juice too. I ate one with some good shakes of Cholula chili lime sauce on that was good.

The holiday is over now and I did not have to cook much so just enjoyed being with the family.

For the crab salad

Blue crab meat

My supper

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Memorial Day week-end pulled Beef and Chicken

May 23 2015

Memorial Day is the holiday in the US we honor all those who died in the service of their country. A lot of people also honor loved ones who have passed. When I grew up in the 50’s we had to go to the cemetery, till up the graves and plant flowers before the week-end. Then every week all summer we had to go water the plants. It is also the first holiday of the summer and now it is time for all those who are into camping to get their gear all ready for the camp ground. For me it is time to do some good BBQ and outdoor cooking.

I have most of my cooking done for the week-end. Our daughter from the Chicago area is supposed to be here today. The son and wife and grandson went to her parents for today. Yesterday I smoked a chicken and a two pound beef arm roast and pulled the meat of both. I am just going to let everyone help themselves and make whatever they want. I have buns for sandwiches, corn and flour tortillas and fixings for tacos or wraps.

I brined the chicken overnight, about 9 hours the rinsed and dried and in the fridge for about 4 hours to air dry. I got the beef roast seasoned with a little Worcestershire sauce, Tee’s Savor top secret seasoning and some dried garlic flakes.

I had my Traeger heated to 225 deg. and put the roast on the grill. It took an hour and half to get to 140 deg. IT. It then went in a roaster pan, added some onions, one can of beer, (all but two swallows), and beef broth to come up half way on the roast. I covered it with foil and back on the grill at 250 deg. It took about 3 hours and forty minutes to get it to 203 deg. IT when I took it inside to cool some. I removed what fat there was and pulled it and strained off the fat from the broth. I added some back to the meat and saved the rest. A chuck roast would have been better; the arm roast was a little tough pulling but should make good sandwiches.

After I had the beef done I prepped the chicken; a pat of butter under each breast skin. I rubbed it with a little mayonnaise, about a teaspoon for the bottom and one for the top. I seasoned it generously with Penzey’s Galena St. rub. It went on the grill for 40 minutes at 225 deg. I then inserted a temp probe and went to 325 deg. and went to 350 deg. the last 20 minutes. I took it to 180 deg. breast IT and took a total of just over two hours. Some may think 180 deg. is a little high but if you have brined the bird it will be moist and pull apart easily for shredding.

The temps I gave were grill level and my Savannah V3 controller did a nice job of holding pretty steady. I did something a little different this time. I usually nuke the skin for a treat or discard when pulling a chicken. This time I nuked it for a minute, turned and another minute to get it crisp and then chopped and added to the chicken meat.

Beef arm roast

At 140 deg. IT ready to foil and braise

Beer, beef broth and onions added before foiling

Cooled and ready to pull

Ready for the week-end

The chicken

Bottom seasoned

Top seasoned

On the smoker, about done


Skin nuked and chopped to add

Ready for some sandwiches or tacos

Friday, May 22, 2015

Finger Steaks, Asparagus and Corn on the Cob

May 21 2015

It was a cool 60 deg. and cloudy about all day; the sun came out about 4:00. I ran the hand mower around to tri today and will finish with the rider tomorrow so I will have it nice for the week-end and relax. It is supposed to be warmer Sat. and Sun. I don’t have any big meals planned for Memorial Day; our daughter will be here and the son and family will be in and out. Our daughter lives in the Chicago area and we haven’t seen her for a while so will be nice to have her here.

We will go out to eat some and Sunday plan on getting some good broasted chicken from Sandman’s carry out. I am going to smoke a beef arm roast and a chicken tomorrow and pull the meat for sandwiches, tacos or wraps; like help yourself and get your own!

Tonight’s supper was easy with not much prepping; finger steaks and asparagus on the Traeger and some corn on the cob steamed in my rice cooker. I cut the sirloin steak in finger size pieces; a light spry of olive oil, a little Worcestershire sauce and some of Tees Savor Top Secret seasoning. It set for about 25 minutes before going on the grill. I was going to use my Weber Spirit but the Grillen Grates were already in the Traeger so thought I would use it. I was too lazy to remove both covers and move the grates!

I also washed and cut the asparagus and made two bundles with silicone rubber bands and drizzled on olive oil and white balsamic vinegar; seasoned with Penzey’s sandwich sprinkle. They sat for a while too.

I had the corn in the steamer and the Traeger heated to 325 deg. which was about 350 deg. grill level. The steak and asparagus went on the Grillen grates about 6 to 7 minutes then turned for another 6 minutes.

I had some Saucy Sow’s smoky horseradish sauce to dip my steak in and had butter, parmesan and some Penzey’s sandwich sprinkle on my corn. The corn was good for shipped in from the grocery and the steak was tender and tasty. Tee’s Top Secret goes great with beef!

Sirloin steak


Asparagus bundles

Corn ready to steam

All done on the Traeger

My supper

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Cider Marinated Chicken Thigh Stacks

May 19 2015

Our nice 80 to 85 deg. temps left and a few days of cool 65 deg. weather has come in. Crazy Ohio weather!

I had not made any of my muffin pan chicken stacks in a while and I wanted something to take to my 93 year old Mother tomorrow. I got some of the ideas from a Rachael Ray recipe for a skillet meal. I took her ingredients, apple cider, sage, thyme and nutmeg to make a marinade for the chicken thighs.

I got my chicken thighs in to marinade about 4 hours before making them up. I had some Heartland organic thigh filets to use. They were large thighs so took an hour and 45 minutes to get to an IT above 170 deg. I love doing these muffin pan stacks and it is an easy way to get some bacon wrapped stuffed chicken without all the hassle of getting them wrapped. You do them for a half hour to 45 minutes and they are set up enough to remove from the pan and go on the grate to finish up.

I had some easy sides; Zatarain’s Yellow rice done in my rice cooker and some stuffed mushrooms from one grocery in town that are pretty decent. I get my rice started about 50 minutes before I plan to serve and it is done and on warm hold when we are ready to eat. I put the mushrooms on my smoker for the last 15 to 20 minutes. I had a loaf of garlic loaf of take home and bake bread for bread and a little butter to make all taste good!

The chicken stacks were tender and moist with great flavor; a keeper recipe for me. Seasoning wise mine needed more salt and next time I may add a little more sage. Anytime I use sage I want it to be a background flavor; not the first thing you taste. I used about 3 shakes and will try 6 the next time. I was a little leery of the sage, thyme, nutmeg mix but for this I think it works if you get it right for your taste.

My wife gave me a thumbs up on the chicken!

Click here for printable recipe

Chicken ready for the fridge

Onion and apple slices

Making the stacks

40 Minutes in and ready to remove from the pan

Mushrooms added

About done

Stuffed mushrooms

Stacks ready to serve

My supper

Monday, May 18, 2015

Greek BBRibs and Potato Salad

May 17 2015

It was a long hard day for me; I don’t like to mow on Sunday but had to between the rains or I would be makin hay! I get hungry for some different ribs sometimes and these Greek style BBRibs are my favorite.
The juice and zest from a lemon, garlic and oregano give them some great flavor. I got them made up and wrapped in plastic wrap and in the fridge for 4 ½ hours. I did add a light coat of Penzey’s sandwich sprinkle this time. It is a garlic and herb salt.

I steamed two pounds of little red potatoes and made up the potato salad from a recipe I adapted from Ina Garten. It is simple and tasty, mayo, sour cream, celery and onions. I added a healthy shake or three of the sandwich sprinkle to it for a change. I omitted the Dijon mustard since I forgot it! After I made up the potato salad I cleaned out my smoker and a new sheet of foil on the drip pan.

I started mowing about 12:15 and got all done but the back yard. I fired up the Traeger at 1:30 set on 200 deg. I moved my Maverick probe to the left side close to the RTD probe to see how they were comparing and they were always within 4 deg. I will give the settings on my Savannah Stoker v3 controller and know I was running 25 to 30 deg. hotter in the middle at grill level.

I got the ribs on at 2:00 for an hour at 200 deg. then went to 225 for the rest of the cook. After an hour and 40 minutes I checked and the ribs looked a little dry so sprayed a light coat of olive oil on. At 4:00 I wrapped the ribs in foil for an hour then removed for the last hour. That was a total of 4 hours. The Savannah Stoker V3 held good temps and got nice smoke.

After I got the ribs on I finished mowing the back yard. The kids stopped in and our son ran the trim mower around the house and fence. I was glad of that since I was going to let the trimming go.

At 6:00 the ribs were done so took them inside to rest a bit and made up some garlic bread under the broiler and heated up some white bean mash for myself. The ribs tasted good for a change without BBQ seasoning or sauce and they were done about right for me. A good Greek salad or potato salad would be a good side for these ribs too.

Click here for printable rib recipe

My favorite zester

For the ribs

Seasoned and ready for the fridge

For the potato salad

All in to mix

Ready to chill

An hour and 40 minutes in

Wrapped at 2 hours.

After an hour in the foil

Done after 4 hours

My supper