Sunday, 18 October 2009

Home made......Mood=Fast Food

So the story goes like this.... Once upon a time, i met a man and he challenged me to find the best burger in town.... So i did. I made him one. And then he married me.

When i met my Husband, the topic of conversation led straight to food. Directed mainly by him. And what a wonderful way to begin. He was telling me he was on a burger mission, literally eating his way through London, to find the best burger. So we went on our mission.

We went from one place to the next and ate burger after burger, and they were all pretty good, but not good enough. From automat burgers, to toms kitchen burgers, to the Kings head in southwark and back this way again. So i raised the challenge and told him i would make him one. So i did it and let me say one thing, it was fantastic. He agreed and insisted i marry him just for that. So i said YES. But really, love was in the air. He thought that it was my first time, but i had done them many times before.

I had
stopped eating burgers in fast food restaurants about 14 years ago, when i discovered something terribly squidgy in my meat. It was the end of the road for me on that one. So i was feeling quite deprived until i really began my love affair with cooking. For me the first thing was to learn how to make my own dough, mince filling and extras to make the ultimate burger. I know nothing beats the smell of the artificial mcD's but in reality you don't know what is in there. And i am the type who needs to KNOW.

So when i began my chef training i wanted to jump the gun to the bread and pastry making just so i could perfect it. If someone had told me that it was pretty darn simple i would have done it a long time ago.

I had a friend of mine over the other night and she seemed pretty startled that when i suggested burgers for dinner that i was going to make my own buns and mince filling. She wanted to go out and buy them. But when i showed her how easy it was to a) follow my recipes, and b) how quick it was, she soon realised what i was on about. Not to mention they were probably the best burgers she has had.

I don't know what it is about baking your own bread, but the satisfaction of the finished product just amazes me.

For the recipe i made last night, i used half of the ingredients and i turned out 4 really nice sized buns, but if you prefer smaller ones then you could probably make around 6.

The recipe
is : (makes 12)
  • 235 ml milk
  • 120 ml water
  • 55 g butter
  • 560 g all-purpose flour
  • 7 g instant yeast
  • 25 g white sugar
  • 9 g salt
  • 1 egg

  • In a small saucepan, heat milk, water and butter until very warm, but not too hot. you just want to scald the milk and then let it cool down a bit otherwise it will kill the yeast.
  • In a large bowl, mix together flour, yeast, sugar and salt. Mix milk mixture into flour mixture, and then mix in egg. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes. Or use your kitchen aid if you have one for about 5 minutes. If you need to add a little more flour, then do so, but only a little at a time
  • Divide dough into 6 or 12 equal pieces. Shape into smooth balls, and place on a greased baking sheet. Flatten slightly. Cover, and let rise for 30 to 35 minutes
  • Just before putting the dough into the oven, glaze with whisked egg. This will give it a nice sheen. And if you like some sesame seeds.
  • Bake at 200 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes, or until golden brown.

For the mince filling, i used 450g of 10% fat beef mince. I added grated onion, grated garlic, mustard, ketchup, salt pepper, cayenne pepper, oregano and fresh thyme. Then i shaped them into the patties and put them in the fridge to rest till i was ready to cook them.

When ready i seared them in a pan first to brown them and then put them in the oven for about 6-8 minutes.

I used onions, tomatoes and cornichons, with home made red onion relish for garnish.

Red onion relish is very easy to make.

2 red onions, sliced
1 Table spoon of sugar
2 Table spoons of aged thick balsamic vinegar
1 cup of red wine

Heat the onions in a pan till they become slightly soft, the add the sugar and balsamic. When they have coloured, add the wine and let it simmer till it becomes almost thicker in consistency. It should take not more than 10 minutes. When the onions have absorbed the liquid let them simmer for a while until they have the right bite to them. Then they will be ready.

Home made fast food made easy!!!!


Pavlos said...

You should let everyone know the real story behind your endeavour to create the "perfect burger"...!!

JKCatering said...

Its been done. xxxx