05 January 2010

Burgers & Fries

As an engagement present, our friends gave us a burger cookbook from the fabulous chef Hubert Keller. We're big fans of burgers and are always looking for fun new ideas on how to make improvements. We had one condition--when Chris came back to visit over the holidays, we owed him some Keller burgers. Deal.

Saturday night they came over for burgers and fries, slightly gourmet style. I didn't alter two of the recipes I used from the book, so obviously, I can't publish them. I made the oven fries with red potatoes and whole cloves of garlic. Yum. The only thing I'd change there would be to not crowd the pan so much. I knew I shouldn't have, but I was lazy. I also made a kalamata olive tapenade. It was pretty salty on its own, but with the burgers...I had faith in its ability to take them to the next level.

With the burgers, I took a little creative license. On New Year's Day we went over to our friends' house to watch the Rose Bowl and brought sandwiches fixins. Since we already had sharp cheddar cheese, I used that instead of the monterey jack cheese. Basically, it was a rather large burger patty with minimal seasoning cooked with a little bit of light oil. I finished the patties in the oven so the cheese would get really melted. While those were finishing, I decided to coat some thinly sliced shallots in flour and fry them. All of that was thrown onto a lightly toasted ciabatta roll, which had a thin spread of tapenade, and plenty of red butter lettuce. Just wish I had taken a picture with something other than my phone.

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