Friday, April 30, 2010

They're a zippy kind of thing, a zippy thing!

I wasn't really sure what to expect from the title: zippy burgers. One of their half-dozen ingredients was chili powder, and I'm generally not that big a fan. I feel like it overwhelms most dishes, but I could be changing my mind.

I made Buppy stop and get good hamburger buns for these. He's more of a cut-corners-cheap-white-hamburger bun kind o' guy than I am. For things like burgers, which I so rarely eat, and brats, which I love-love-love, a good bun is a necessity. For real. Why go out of your way to make this awesome little [or giant, whatever tickles your peanuts] burger when you have a generic, tasteless bun to put it on? Nope. I'm tired of it. So I put my foot down. Buppy spent a whole $2.69 on bakery buns last night. I buttered them, and he tossed 'em on the grill when he tossed the cheese on the burgers . . . or sometime around then. So worth it!

This recipe calls for beer or beef broth. Well I'm no silly fool who uses beef broth when given the option to throw in some booze, so we used an Ultra Amber we had in the fridge. The recipe list is short, but I really thought more of the flavors would come through. To be honest, all I really tasted was the beer. I'm not complaining about that, don't get me wrong, I just want to be up front about the fact that the rest of the ingredients get kind of lost in the mixture. I could almost detect a little zip from the red pepper flakes, but nothing serious. They were really moist [Buppy does a great job on the grill!], the cheese was ooey-gooey, the lettuce added some good crunch and the tomato completed it. Yes, I'll be making these again. Perhaps I'll tweak 'em so more of the other flavors are discernible, perhaps I'll be too lazy that day.

Zippy Burgers
Adapted from Taste of Home's Light & Tasty Annual Recipes 2005
Test kitchen created

1/4 c. beer or beef broth
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 lb. lean ground beef
5 hamburger buns, split

Butter or margarine [for the buns before they go on the grill]
Cheese slices of your choice [I used Kraft 2% Swiss since it was in my fridge and open]
Lettuce, tomato, mayo, mustard, ketchup [any toppings you'll want for your burger]

In a bowl, combine the first 7 ingredients. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into 5 patties [Buppy did 1 bigger one for himself, then 1 medium one for me and 3 smaller ones for leftovers and/or the kids].

Coat grill rack with non-stick spray before starting the grill. Butter insides of split rolls. Grill hamburgers, covered, over medium heat 6-8 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer reads 160F. You can also broil 4 inches from the heat for the same amount of time if you're not grilling. About a minute or so before you suspect your burgers are done, toss the cheese on the burgers to melt and place the buns on the grill, split/buttered side down. Remove the burgers when the cheese is nice and melty; remove the buns once they're warmed and starting to brown.
Top the burgers with whatever usual burger stuff you use --- lettuce, tomato, pickles, mustard, mayo, ketchup, etc. Be creative!

Tiny Tot #1 at all of his half-burger [we split 1 between the 2]. He had cheese, ketchup and mustard on his, I think. Tiny Tot #2, after several bites, decided he didn't like his burger and ate his bun only. Buppy made him eat 4 bites of the actual meat to get dessert [or "bussert", as he calls it]. When Buppy asked if he liked it after eating those 4 bites, he said he did. Little stinker just said he didn't in the beginning to get to "bussert" faster!

Funny side note: when trying to correct Tiny Tot #2 and teach him to say "dessert" instead of "bussert", I wound up with "debussert". I give up. For now.

Enjoy some light & tasty burgers!

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