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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Caprese Burgers

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The most important tips I can give you in making the perfect burgers, I learned from the master, Bobby Flay. He didn’t personally teach me, although that would’ve been awesome. I watched a show he did on grilling burgers. If there is anyone on this planet that can make and grill the perfect burger it’s Bobby Flay. These are my Caprese Burgers.

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Caprese Burgers

Yields: 6 patties, about 2 inches thick
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 10
Cook Time: 9 to 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: indoor grill pan

Ingredients:
2 pounds ground meat, choice of pork, chicken, turkey, or beef
2 cloves freshly grated garlic
2 tablespoons onion powder
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly cracked black pepper
4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons good ketchup

2 large beefsteak tomatoes, 6 slices, 1-inch thick
6 slices fresh Mozzarella, 1-inch thick slices
2 cups of arugula
6 Brioche Buns, toasted
balsamic glaze, (optional)
Canola oil

Directions:
Place all the ingredients (flavorings) into a large bowl whisk to combine. Next, add the ground meat to the bowl, mix gently with a fork incorporating all the ingredients throughout the meat. This ensures the meat does not get over-mixed or compacted, by using your hands. Gently press the meat down evenly into the bowl. Using your hands, score the meat into 6 equal portions. This will ensure the patties are the same size.

Grab one of the scored portions. Patty the meat gently,  then with your finger, press the center of the patty making an indention, a dimple. This will stop the burger from shrinking will cook evenly throughout. Crazy right? Believe me, when I tell you, this works every time.

Note: Season both sides of your patties with a sprinkling of Kosher salt and black pepper after you’ve brushed them with Canola oil, then place on the hot grill.

Whether you’re using an inside or outside grill, first, make sure the surface is nice and hot. Lightly brush each side of your burger patties with Canola oil and place it on the hot grill. Do not touch them no matter how bad you want to. You should only flip the burger once.

Cook the burgers on the first side for 5 minutes before flipping. Grill the patties on the other side for another 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the patties to a large plate, cover them with foil, and let them rest for 10 minutes.

While the burger patties are resting, butter the Brioche buns, place them on the grill. Toast the buns for 1 to 2 minutes.

To assemble, lay the bottom toasted bun on the plate. Add the burger patty, a fresh of Mozzarella, a thick slice of tomato, a sprinkling of Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper, a drizzle of balsamic glaze (optional), a few fresh arugula leaves, and finally, the toasted top bun. These are my Caprese Burgers.

Serve hot.

Follow this method every time and you’ll have the perfect burgers. Thanks, Bobby Flay!

 

 

 

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Homemade Salisbury Steak

Homemade Salisbury Steak

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Homemade Salisbury Steak has to be the one TV dinner you knew if you grew up in the ’70s. I believe the most popular brand was the Hungry Man TV dinner. They were a great time saver for parents and offered all the major food groups. My mom also had her own recipe for Salisbury steak and her’s was so good.

Today I’m making my version of this iconic meal. Homemade Salisbury Steak with mash potatoes and corn brings back so many memories. This one’s for you mom!

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 to 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Equipment: 12-inch cast iron skillet, large mixing bowl

Ingredients:
1 pound lean ground sirloin
1 pound ground pork
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1/4 stick unsalted butter plus 1 tablespoon
1 large onion, thinly sliced into half moons
1-pint button white button mushrooms, sliced
1 8-ounce container ricotta cheese
2 tablespoon fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 to 1 1/4 cups Italian-style breadcrumbs
2 extra large eggs, beaten
8 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of ketchup
2 tablespoons of fresh garlic, grated
3 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
1 1/2 cups unsalted beef broth
1 teaspoon of Kitchen Boquet, seasoning sauce
1 15-ounce bag Publix Sweet Corn
*Slurry
1 heaping tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon of unsalted beef broth

Directions:
In a large mixing bowl start with ricotta cheese, freshly chopped Italian parsley, Italian seasoned bread crumbs, beaten eggs, 3 dashes of Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, freshly grated garlic, 2 teaspoons of Kosher salt, and 1 teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper, mix until the consistency is like wet sand. If needed, adjust by adding an extra 1/4 cup of breadcrumbs.

Next, add the ground pork and sirloin to the bowl, combine everything together, do not overmix. In the bowl, using your hands, divide the meat into four (4) equal quadrants. Take a quarter of the mixture and form an oval patty. Hold the patty in your hand, with your other hand, take your fingers and make indentations going across the patty on one side. Transfer the patty to a plate. Repeat this process three more times.

As the patties cook, the indentions will act as though they’ve been cooking on a grill and give you great looking grill marks. Repeat this with the other 3 patties. Transfer to a platter and set aside.

In a cast iron skillet med-high heat, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of butter. Place the patties indentation side down first. After patties have browned 3 to 4 minutes, turn the patties over and cook for another 3 to 4 minutes, or until browned. Transfer the patties to a platter and pour off any excess grease.

In the same skillet, reduce the heat to medium. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil with 1/4 stick of butter. Add the sliced onions, stir and cook until golden brown. Next, add the sliced white button mushrooms. Stir and cook until the onions and mushrooms start to soften 5 to 7 minutes. Add the fresh thyme leaves stir to combine. As the onions and mushrooms get some nice color, and their liquid has evaporated, season with 1 teaspoon of kosher salt and 1/2 a teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper.

At this point, to the onions and mushrooms add ketchup, around 5 dashes of Worcestershire sauce, seasoning sauce (Kitchen Boquet), chopped rosemary, and 1 1/2 cups of unsalted beef broth, stir to combine. Next, in a small bowl make the *slurry by adding 1 heaping tablespoon of cornstarch with 1 tablespoon of unsalted beef broth. Whisk until a smooth paste. Add the *slurry to the sauce, stir to combine. When the sauce starts to thicken turn the heat down to low.

As the patties are simmering, spoon some of the gravy with mushrooms and onions over the top of each one. Let simmer on low heat for 15 to 20 minutes or until the patties are no longer pink in the middle.

Keeping with the tradition of the “TV Dinner”, I like to serve my Homemade Salisbury Steak with my Homestyle Mashed Potatoes (click the link below for my recipe) and sweet corn.

*Cornstarch Slurry: For each cup of liquid you want to thicken, start with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch in a small bowl. Add an equal amount of cold liquid (broth or water) and stir until smooth paste forms. This is your slurry. Wisk the slurry into the hot, simmering liquid you want to thicken.

 

Homestyle Mashed Potatoes

 

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Homemade Sloppy Joes

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A childhood favorite. When your mom or dad made Sloppy Joes for dinner it wasn’t a matter of what’s for dinner, it’s, how long before dinner’s ready? My Homemade Sloppy Joes get the same response today.

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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: 6-quart braising pot, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans

Ingredients:
2-pounds of ground pork
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 medium-size onion, diced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1 Poblano pepper, seeded and diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 Fresno chili, seeded and minced
1 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes
1 28-ounce can of tomato purée
1/2 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard
4 dashes Worcestershire sauce
1 heaping tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 12-pack package Brioche hamburger buns
1/2 stick unsalted butter, room temperature

Directions:
In a heavy bottom braising pot on medium-high, heat the olive oil. Add the ground pork, breaking apart with the back of a wooden spoon into crumbles as it starts to brown, about 5 minutes. Drain well and set aside.

Add onion, bell peppers, and Poblano pepper and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Add minced garlic and cook for 2 minutes more until fragrant. Add the ground pork back into the same pot add the tomato paste. stir well.

Preheat oven to 350-degrees F.

Add ketchup, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, crushed tomatoes, tomato purée, Kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper, smoked paprika, ground cinnamon, dark brown sugar, onion powder, garlic powder, dried oregano, stir well to combine. Lower the heat to medium-low and simmer for 40 minutes or until mixture has thickened to your liking.

While the sloppy joe mixture is simmering, butter the Brioche buns, place onto 2 baking sheet pans and toast until a light golden brown, about 3 to 5 minutes.

To Serve, place 2 Brioche hamburger buns onto a plate. Ladle a good helping of the hot sloppy joe mixture onto each one. There you have it, my Homemade Sloppy Joes.

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