Archive for the ‘Grilled’ Category

“Recycler” Patty Melt

There always seems to be one.

Whenever you grill burgers, it never fails. There’s one straggler than makes its way into the fridge because nobody can seem to cram any more food down their gullet after two burgers, at least one hot dog, chips and dip, fries and/or tots and/or onion rings, and no telling how many fizzy beverages. Oh, and don’t forget the baked beans. But the next day, who really wants to eat it? The microwave or toaster oven will just dry it out further, the oven and grill are both overkill, and even so, they just don’t have the same great flavor. What to do? Patty Melt.

Butter up a couple pieces of bread, throw one in a hot frying pan and add the leftover burger. If it has a leftover slice of American “cheese product” fused to its surface from the night before, tails wins the toss. Then cover the other side with another slice, but if you have it, mix it up a little with white American this time, or better yet, Swiss or mozzarella. For this one I used mozzarella.

Finish it off with the other slice, turning it a time or two until it’s golden brown like a grilled cheese sandwich. If you want to get fancy with it, A-1 makes a great dipping sauce for this one.

Chicken, Mushrooms And Vegetables

This one is probably a bit healthier than most of the entries here.

Start out with a zucchini squash, a yellow squash, a red onion, grape tomatoes, and bell pepper. I got an assortment of red, green and yellow bell peppers a little smaller than the size of my fist. Slice ’em all up, toss them in a bowl with some olive oil and seasoning before putting them in the grilling basket. For this one I’m using Weber’s Roasted Garlic and Herb seasoning.

Next, I have boneless, skinless chicken breast tenderloins marinading in a bag with some olive oil and the same seasoning before putting them on the foil-covered grill. Chicken sometimes likes to stick, even if you have a clean, oiled grilling surface, so foil and oil make it easier.

While the chicken in over direct heat on low, the vegetables are next to the chicken getting indirect heat. I toss the vegetables whenever I check the chicken. But for now, I’m inside, using the stove and a cast iron skillet (sorry no pics) to saute sliced mushrooms in olive oil with minced garlic and some red onion.

Running back and forth between the two, trying not to burn anything is no fun, so I kept the chicken on a little lower than normal until the mushrooms were done. Then turn it up a little more for the big finish.

Dr. Pepper-Bourbon Brine

chicken and brine in a bagI’m trying a new brine tonight. I’ve cut two chicken breast fillets into skewer-size pieces and put them in a Ziploc bag. They’ll be in the refrigerator for about 48 hours, due to plans for dinner out tomorrow night, but the alcohol should keep any bacteria at bay.

In a mixing bowl I combined:

1 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup Dr. Pepper
1/4 cup bourbon (I used Evan Williams)
a few shakes of salt
a few shakes of black pepper
a few shakes of ground cloves

I stirred it all together with a fork, put the chicken in the bag and then poured in the brine. Looking back, it would’ve been easier if I’d used a large Pyrex measuring cup instead of a mixing bowl, or just poured all the brine ingredients into the bag, sealed it, mixed it by mashing it with my hands until blended and then added the meat. Oh, well. Next time.

The final product was tender and flavorful, but not overly juicy, so I may have just cooked them too long. First I got the grilling surface good and hot on both sides, with some hickory chips in the smoker boxes on the right. Then I turned them both down to medium and put on the skewers. They got a few minutes on one side, then the other, then back and forth one more time each. The second round is when they got basted with a good coat of the Dr. Pepper barbecue sauce. Some folks like a mustard-based sauce, some like vinegar. Others like sweet and smoky, or maybe even molasses or honey. I definitely fall in the sweet category. But still others prefer it hot and peppery. That was my impression of this sauce, and I couldn’t really tell that there was any Dr. Pepper flavor to it. So it made an okay glaze, but I definitely needed a refill on my iced tea before it was all said and done.