Showing posts with label burgers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label burgers. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Baked Mini Meatloaves with Roasted Apples

LESLIE BUDEWITZ: Looking back over my posts in the nearly two years that I’ve been part of the Mystery Lovers’ Kitchen crew (thanks, friends!), I see that I don’t post many meat dishes. When I do, you’ll often see Mr. Right’s hands in the photograph. According to Mr. Right, I officially lost my title of Picky Eater about ten or twelve years ago, when we ate street tacos in Mexico for my birthday—we’d miscalculated what would be open on a Wednesday in the small undeveloped oceanfront village where we were staying, and they were the only option. Not long after, we were in France and I ordered langoustines. “You know they come with their heads on,” he said. I knew. They were delicious.

Point is, I still have a few food quirks left—no doubt we all do. One of mine, a remnant from years as a vegetarian, is that I don’t like to physically handle red meat, although I will when necessary. I recognize the contradiction—we’ve all got those, too. So when we eat red meat, it tends to be a steak or a burger Mr. Right makes. 

That’s a long way of explaining why I don’t very often post meat dishes. But this one, in my mother’s Good Housekeeping magazine, caught my eye. It’s a variation of our basic burger, which includes ground sirloin, seasoning, Panko, and Parmesan. This version substitutes zucchini for the cheese, a great way to sneak in vegetables; they keep the burgers moist and hold them together well. 

The original recipe suggests ground beef or dark turkey; we prefer ground sirloin, which is a little more expensive, but is comparatively lean and doesn’t shrink much. It also calls for shaping the meat into 4 oblong meatloaves, but you can certainly make more, smaller burgers—just keep an eye on your baking time. And while it suggested Gala or Empire apples—firm and tart-sweet—I used two of the Red Delicious the bears kindly left on our tree this year and a Gala from a friend’s orchard. I think a mix of apples is always best; use anything firm enough to not turn to mush when baked. I thought the mustard might be too strong, but it mellows beautifully in the baking. 

Baked Mini Meatloaves with Roasted Apples

(Adapted from Good Housekeeping, November 2016)

1-1/4 pounds ground beef or sirloin
1 small zucchini, grated
1/3 cup Panko breadcrumbs
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1-2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 small to medium apples, cored and cut into wedges
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, chopped, or ½ teaspoon dried rosemary, crumbled
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
dash of salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
fresh herbs for garnish, optional

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil or parchment paper. In a large bowl, combine the beef, zucchini, bread crumbs, salt, and pepper. 

Shape into four small meatloaves or six small burgers, and place on baking sheet. Brush tops with mustard.

Toss the cut apples with the rosemary, cayenne, salt, and olive oil. Arrange on baking sheet around the loaves or burgers, in a single layer.


Bake 30 minutes, or until done. Garnish the meat with fresh herbs, if you’d like.

From the cover of KILLING THYME (October 2016, in paperback, e-book, and audio---large print coming soon!): 

At Seattle Spice in the Pike Place Market, owner Pepper Reece is savoring her business success, but soon finds her plans disrupted by a killer…

Pepper Reece’s to-do list is longer than the shopping list for a five-course dinner, as she conjures up spice blends bursting with seasonal flavor, soothes nervous brides fretting over the gift registry, and crosses her fingers for a rave review from a sharp-tongued food critic. Add to the mix a welcome visit from her mother, Lena, and she’s got the perfect recipe for a busy summer garnished with a dash of fun. 

While browsing in the artists’ stalls, Pepper and Lena drool over stunning pottery made by a Market newcomer. But when Lena recognizes the potter, Bonnie Clay, as an old friend who disappeared years ago, the afternoon turns sour. To Pepper’s surprise, Bonnie seems intimately connected to her family’s past. after Bonnie is murdered only days later, Pepper is determined to uncover the truth. 

But as Pepper roots out long-buried secrets, will she be digging her own grave?

Leslie Budewitz is the author of the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries and the Spice Shop Mysteries—and the first author to win Agatha Awards for both fiction and nonfiction. The 2015-16 president of Sisters in Crime, she lives in northwest Montana with her husband, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their cat Ruff, a cover model and avid bird-watcher.

Swing by my website  and join the mailing list for my seasonal newsletter. And join me on Facebookwhere I often share news of new books and giveaways from my cozy writer friends.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Other Burgers

by Sheila Connolly

Here we are in full summer, and farmers' markets are bursting with goodies. It’s often too hot to cook inside, so across the nation barbecues are turning out wonderful smells of cooking meats, chicken, and even vegetables. Life is good.

But don’t you ever get tired of the same-old-same-old hamburgers and hotdogs? And our government keeps telling us that we have to cook our beef all the way through (per the Food Network, “Because E. coli is killed at 155 degrees Fahrenheit, the USDA sets the minimum safe temperature for ground beef at 160 degrees Fahrenheit. We can only second this.), or risk dire consequences. The pundits on newscasts are saying, literally, “cook your beef until it is gray.” I respect the threat of various nasty bacteria, but I don’t want to eat gray meat. I’d rather do without.

But there are other options! I’m presenting two here, with a nod at Mark Bittman (who puts out too many darned good recipes). You do need a food processor to make these work, unless you really, really love chopping things very fine.

[Disclaimer: these recipes make four burgers. Since it’s only my husband and me around to eat them these days, I made half-recipes, and that’s what the pictures show.]


1-1/2 pounds boneless lamb (whatever cut you can get, or can afford)
1 small onion
1 Tblsp garlic, chopped
2 Tblsp parsley, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste

Trim as much fat as you can from the lamb, as well as the “squiggly bits” as my daughter used to call them. Cut the lamb and the onion into coarse chunks (or if you don’t want a strong onion flavor, use shallots). Put everything in the food processor and pulse just until the meat is ground (do not just leave the food processor on or you will end up with lamb paste).

...and after

Shape the meat into burgers and grill, turning once, for 4-8 minutes total. If you like, you can top them with feta cheese.

Or for something completely different: Tunaburgers!

1-1/2 pounds tuna (fresh, not canned!)
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp mayonnaise
1 Tblsp capers, drained
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut the tuna into large chunks. Put a quarter of the total amount in the food processor along with the mustard, mayonnaise and capers. Process until the mixture becomes pasty (this time you’re supposed to!). Add the rest of the tuna and pulse until the fish is chopped and well mixed (but don’t over-process).

Shape into four burgers. The cooking is a smidge more complicated, because (a) there is no fat in the fish, and (b) you want to cook these quickly over high heat to sear the outside while leaving the inside rare. Brush the burgers with oil and grill over high heat, turning once, about 4-6 minutes total.

This might work well with salmon too—I’ll try that next.

Yes, there's another Orchard Mystery, Picked to Die,  coming out on October 7th, and this one's about Meg's second harvest in Granford (nice timing, debuting in October, right in the middle of the harvest season, don't you think?).

But there may be another ebook sneaking into September: Seeing the Dead, a sequel to Relatively Dead (2013). No cover or blurb yet, so stay tuned!