Showing posts with label hamburger. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hamburger. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Flat, delicious burgers recipe plus #book giveaway from author @DarylWoodGerber

Cookbook Nook giveaway on!

Right up until Thanksgiving, I’m always thinking about what I’m going to be grilling on the weekends. Hamburgers definitely fall into the mix every time. I love to barbecue. And I make great hamburgers and turkey burgers and bison burgers.

Or do I?

So, my husband—you remember my husband...he is the one who loves to read foodie magazines. Well, recently, he was reading an article in a magazine, and he said, “Honey, you have to see this. Do you know how you can make a hamburger perfectly flat?”

Well, of course, I thought I did, but he read me the article anyway. How could I say no? Lo and behold, I didn’t know how to make a flat burger. Mine are always puffed in the middle.

The article revealed that although a hamburger might look perfectly flat when you form the beef into a patty, it invariably puffs in the center as the meat cooks.

Yep, that’s mine.

This either makes it hard to pile on goodies after it’s done or you might overcook the middle just to make sure the puffy center is cooked. Ick. I hate overcooked burgers.

The article said there was a solution.

Here’s my quickie version of the recipe with photos:

(*works on all types, turkey, bison, and beef)

1) Form the burgers into flat patties on a clean work surface. That’s what I always do. But make them about an inch wider than the bun. (I use about 6 to 8 ounces of meat; cooks down to 4 to 6 ounces.)


And then…

2) Press down on the center of each patty, using your fingers to make an indentation. Now the article said to press “halfway through the burger thickness.” That’s hard to do. Just make an indentation. It works. Don’t overwork the meat; you don’t want it to get tough.

Can you see the indentations?

3) Cook over a hot grill to desired temperature. Most pundits will say 160 degrees F. I judge by time. About 4 minutes a side under the broiler or on a medium high grill.

4) Here's the amazing the burger cooks, juice starts collecting in the center of the meat and stays there! It keeps the burger moist as it cooks. The burger shrinks “into the center” as it cooks. And levels out.

See it pooling?


Enjoy a great burger. We did. With a yummy salad that I'd laced with cheddar cheese.

* * * *

Make sure you're signed up for my newsletter. The launch day giveaway for STIRRING THE PLOT, which debuts September 30, will include all my books, a plush Tigger,
a Cookbook Nook mug, and more! 

Click HERE.  

And "like" me on Facebook and Goodreads, where information about other giveaways will appear, like...

This prize below is going to be given away on Facebook on September 29. 
See all the books? You like books! 23 of them!  There's one from every author on Mystery Lovers Kitchen, plus other pals with whom I've done book signings! A mug, a plush tigger, an I Love Mystery tote & more. Fun, right? I figure if Stirring the Plot is coming out,
I might as well let all my pals celebrate with me!

Did I mention Stirring the Plot has a Halloween theme?

A list of all authors/books will be on Facebook. Keep an eye out.

AND if you leave a comment today, you'll be entered to win one of the first two Cookbook Nook mysteries [Final Sentence or Inherit the Word]. Tell me why you like culinary mysteries! Remember to leave your email address so I can contact you if you win! 

* * * *

Friend Daryl on Facebook
Friend Avery on Facebook
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Follow Avery on Twitter
Follow both of us on Pinterest
Check out our website.

Days of Wine and Roquefort 
is out!
order here

Inherit the Word
  is out!
                                    order here

STIRRING THE PLOT is available for preorder: order here. It debuts September 30!

If you haven't done so, sign up for the mailing list 
so you can learn about upcoming events, releases, and contests! 

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Happy #Halloween Week! This packs a punch!

Happy Halloween!!

I love to dress up, don’t you? There’s something flat-out fun about putting on a costume. You can become whoever you wish to be for one full night. I rarely can get my husband to dress for Halloween. It’s a little silly, for his taste. But we went on a Disney cruise with the family to celebrate a big anniversary for us, and I was able to wrangle him into a pirate costume. Whee! Think I can talk him into putting it on for tomorrow night? Probably not. It’s okay, once a year is a big step!  LOL

Anyway, are you having kids over to celebrate? If so, you probably have all your decorations up, your pumpkin cut, your bagged candy poured into a bowl, and your costume ready.

But did you remember to make punch?  I’ve been scouring the Internet and magazines and cookbooks for colorful (maybe frightful) food and décor to include in my third Cookbook Nook book, which will come out next October (right before Halloween); it features a spoo-o-o-ky theme!  Okay, maybe not spooky, but fun!

While thumbing through the latest Food Network magazine, I saw this punch recipe and knew I had to try it. It isn’t hard to make. And the frozen hand isn’t hard to do, either. It involves freezing punch in a non-powdered latex kitchen glove. Cool, right?

Kids (especially teens) will get a kick out seeing a floating ice hand in their drink. I’ve got to tell you, my husband nearly screamed when he opened the freezer and saw a frozen hand! I’m trying to come up with other ideas that might scare him tomorrow. Suggestions?  (Cue: maniacal cackle.)

This punch is fun for all ages. I’m sure if you want to make it for adults, you can lace it with your choice of hard stuff.

By the way, check out my Pinterest Halloween board to see some of the décor I’ve found online.

(tweaked from recipe found in
Food Network Magazine)


(serves 6-12)

3 cups cranberry raspberry juice
3 cups Hawaiian punch (or similar)
1 12-ounce can Dr. Pepper
1 16-ounce bottle ginger ale

For the “hand”:
1 extra cup cranberry raspberry juice
1 powder-free latex glove.


Fill the power-free latex glove with cranberry raspberry juice. Use a rubber band to tie closed. Freeze at leat 6 hours or overnight. (I hung the glove, using a chip bag clip) on the door side of my freezer, fingers pointing down.

Chill all the rest of the ingredients.

When ready to serve, combine all the liquids. Remove the “hand” from the freezer. Set into the middle of the bowl, curved side up. If desired, cut and peel off the glove, though warning: a finger or two might fall off.

Bubbly fun!
Taking a cue from Cleo, 
I'm starting to make pdfs that you can download.
 Click on the picture to do so.

In addition to punch, I also made this cute hamburger. It's simply a hamburger with cheese cut out (no recipe), but for the little ones in your crowd, they'll enjoy! Needs cheese and a soft-edged knife. Enjoy!

Other fun recipes recently shared in my most recent newsletter:

And take a look at this silly thing. I saw this on a buffet. Maybe you can figure out where to put it in your decor. It's an apple "jaw" with teeth. I used pumpkin seeds. I saw it made with almond slivers. Too fun, right?

* * * * * * * 

Friend Daryl on Facebook
Friend Avery on Facebook
Follow Daryl on Twitter
Follow Avery on Twitter
Follow both of us on Pinterest
Check out our website.

Next up: 
Days of Wine and Roquefort Feb 2014, preorder here
Inherit the Word March 2014, preorder here

If you haven't done so, sign up for the mailing list 
so you can learn about upcoming events, releases, and contests! 

Friday, July 9, 2010

5 Ways to Use Your Grilled Leftovers by Cleo Coyle

Burgers, steak, hot dogs, ribs, and chicken were probably the most commonly grilled meats in the USA last weekend.

I grilled pork chops, which I blogged about last Friday. To get my recipe for Pork Chops with Apple Juice and Sage marinade, click here.

Then New York was hit by record levels of heat (over 100 degrees). This kept me grilling, because our little, urban kitchen is not air conditioned and there was no way I'd crank up an oven or even a gas burner in airless heat that brutal.

When the unbearable temps finally came down to plain old uncomfortable, I took a look at our fridge full of grilled leftovers and thought—okay, now I know what I’m blogging about this week!

Before I get to my ideas, however, I have to ask about your own. Do you have favorite ways to use those day-old grilled meats (or veggies)? Feel free to leave your ideas in the comments below –- and if you blog, you are more than welcome to leave a link so everyone can check out your recipe posts, too.

Finally, here at Mystery Lovers' Kitchen, we are all still proudly celebrating this week's debut of two delightful new mystery series by two of our own mystery writing cooks. Congratulations again to...

Avery Aames on the release of
The Long Quiche Goodbye,
the first book in her Cheese Shop
and to...

Riley Adams' on the publicaiton
of Delicious and Suspicious,the first
book in her Memphis BBQ Mysteries!

Cheers to you both!

And, now, here are my...

Five Ways to Use
Your Grilled Leftovers

#1 Leftover Burgers – I confess: I will eat cold pizza out of the fridge. But I’ve never met anyone who enjoys an ice cold hamburger. Sure, you can feed it to Fluffy. But why turn deliciously grilled burger meat into cat food? Here’s what I like to do...

Slice the meat patties lengthwise into three or four thick strips, splash on some Worcestershire sauce and re-heat in the microwave. Warm a skillet on your stovetop and toss in soft, flour tortillas, one at a time, flipping to heat both sides. Plate the tortilla and create a Hamburger Wrap, using the re-heated burger strips and the same “fixin’s” you’d use on your burger: mustard, pickle, tomato, shredded lettuce, mayo, ketchup, crumbled bleu cheese, whatever you like!

#2 Leftover Steak – Simple. Place a bit of butter on each steak and re-heat in the microwave. Slice newly sizzling steaks into strips and serve over a salad tossed with your favorite dressing. We like either homemade Caesar or bleu cheese dressings. For the latter, I’ll mix crumbled bleu cheese into mayonnaise, stir in a little chopped garlic, squeeze in a bit of lemon, toss in some chopped scallions, and add a bit of anchovy paste. If you don’t like or have anchovy paste on hand, try a dash of Worcestershire. That deep, umami flavor of the anchovy or the Worcestershire perfectly balances the brighter, more astringent notes of the other ingredients in the dressing.

#3 Leftover Hot Dogs – Here in New York, our mayor is the billionaire businessman Michael Bloomberg. During one of the many posh events that he attended a few years ago, the buffet was as lavish as one might expect at such a function, including jumbo shrimp bigger than a toddler’s fist. As this legendary story goes, the succulent shrimp didn’t interest the mayor. What Mr. Bloomberg kept reaching for were savory little wieners wrapped in pastry dough. Yes, that’s right, our billionaire mayor couldn’t stop eating good old Pigs in Blankets!

Pigs in Blankets - Billionaire Mayor Bait!

If you’ve never had Pigs in Blankets made with hot dogs and either pastry or biscuit dough, then you’re missing out. Take your leftover grilled hot dogs and cut them in two. Make a shallow incision lengthwise in each piece and place a sliver of your favorite cheese inside (cheddar, Monterey jack, queso blanco, mozzarella, Swiss).

Break open a tube of Pillsbury Cresents (or your favorite brand of refrigerated pastry dough). There are eight triangles per tube. Cut the triangles of dough in half (lengthwise or widthwise, your choice). You now have 16 pieces of dough. Roll the dough around your cheese-stuffed hot dog halves. Place on a baking sheet that’s been sprayed with a bit of non-stick cooking spray. Bake for about 10 to 14 minutes in an oven preheated to 350 degrees F. When dough is puffed and golden brown, remove from oven. Serve warm with a side of tiny pickles and a “dipping sauce” of ketchup and mustard mixed together at a 1:1 ratio. (It’s classic!)

(And if you have unused pieces of dough, then simply sprinkle them with cinammon sugar and roll into mini croissants. You can enjoy them with coffee after dinner or for breakfast in the morning.)

 #4 Leftover Ribs (or any other pork) – Last week, I grilled up pork chops and posted a recipe for an easy Apple Juice and Sage marinade. Click here if you missed it. This week, I’d suggest stripping any pork meat off the bone and creating a classic Soft Taco with fresh guacamole, slices of jalapeno, your favorite hot sauce, and a dollop of cooling sour cream. I’m fine with eating the grilled pork cold this way, but you can always re-heat it in a microwave or on your stovetop.

Cleo Coyle's Amazing Coffee Glazed BBQ Chicken...
This recipe will be in my next E-newsletter.
The newsletter is free. To sign up, just send an email
to that says "Sign me up."

#5 Leftover Chicken – I’ll never say no to a cold piece of chicken, whether grilled or breaded and fried. To me, it’s good old fashioned picnic basket comfort food. If you're not a fan of eating cold chicken off the bone, however, here is another grilling leftovers idea, one I made this week after grilling my very special “coffee” chicken (pictured).

To get my recipe for Coffee Glazed BBQ Chicken, sign up for my newsletter, which will be going out soon with that exclusive recipe included. (To find out how to sign up, read the photo caption.)

In the meantime, here’s my recipe for Grilled Chicken, Bacon, and Egg Salad – perfect for an easy, tasty lunch or a refreshingly chilled dinner on a butally hot day.

Cleo Coyle’s
Grilled Chicken,
Bacon, and Egg Salad

3-4 pieces of leftover grilled chicken.
3-4 strips of bacon, sliced into small pieces, cooked and drained
3 hardboiled eggs, chopped
¼ cup fresh parsley chopped (I use the flat-leaf “Italian” parsley)
5 Tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon lemon juice (about 1/2 a fresh lemon)
Sea or Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper (white is prettier for presentation but I’ll use black when it’s all I have on hand)

Strip the chicken from the bone and cut the meat into bite-size pieces. You should have about 2 cups of chopped meat. If not, add meat from another piece of chicken. Mix in the cooked bacon piece, hardboiled eggs, and chopped parsley. Add mayonnaise and lemon juice and mix again. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Chill and enjoy on slices of a crusty baguette, your favorite crackers, or make a sandwich with your favorite toasted bread.

Eat with joy!

~Cleo Coyle
author of
The Coffeehouse Mysteries

To get more recipes ideas or to find out about the books in my nationally bestselling Coffeehouse Mystery series, visit me at my official website:

On Sale
August 3, 2010
Roast Mortem
by Cleo Coyle

Comments for Cleo

What are you favorite ideas
for using grilled leftovers?