And by fat, I mean we only ate really unhealthy food. Well, okay. We only ate food that *sounded* unhealthy. We invited a bunch of Nathan's cousins over who live nearby to join in this feast.
Luther Burgers. French Fries. Polish hot dogs on maple bars. Apple beer. And I was going to make these fried cookie things, but... it didn't happen. So maybe another time.
Luther burgers are essentially hamburgers with bacon, cheese, BBQ sauce, and any other fixings you want, but instead of a bun you cut a Krispy Kreme donut in half and flip the glazed sides in. Boom, donut bun. Sounds like a heart attack waiting to happen, though I can't really see how it's any less healthy than eating donuts for breakfast and a burger for dinner...
That's not a cousin. Impostor!
I used this recipe for the burgers, slightly modified as detailed below:
- 4 lbs hamburger (80/20)
- 1 egg
- a thick slice of homemade bread
- about 1/3 c 2% milk
- 1/4 c Worcestershire sauce
- some red pepper flakes - maybe about 1/4 tsp
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp seasoning salt
- some dried onion
- some salt and pepper
Mix it all except the hamburger, then mix in the hamburger with your hands and try not to think about how nasty it is to touch raw meat.
The beginnings of the meat preparation.
I made the patties kind of smaller so they'd fit on the Krispy Kremes (lies, I didn't know how big to make them but Tasha, a cousin in law in law, offered advice and they turned out the perfect size somewhat unintentionally), so 4 lbs of meat made 23 hamburger patties. Probably a little more than we needed, but that's okay. They freeze well, I hear.
The burgers turned out good, not super spicy but still flavorful. You can, of course, modify the spices to your own liking. That's what I had in my cupboard that sounded like it would taste good. Nathan cooked them while I moved on to the french fry preparation.
Note: if you ever throw a party like this, start the french fries first. They take the longest by FAR.
For the french fries, I enlisted my brother in law to peel potatoes. We may have gotten a little carried away, though... he ended up peeling an entire 5 lb bag of them. (We had about 10 people or so at the party.) Nathan used our really awesome french fry cutter that I got a while back and hadn't used yet, and before I could even finish prepping the hamburgers, POOF! Two bowls of mostly uniform raw french fries!
Then it gets really exciting. I pulled out my deep fat fryer (YES! I've had this baby for over 2 years and I finally had a chance to use it! It's hard to justify using so much oil for two people) and filled her up with about 9 cups of oil. Then I plugged it in to preheat... and the circuit blew in the kitchen. Turns out two George Foreman grills and a deep fat fryer are a little too much for it to handle on one circuit. Reset, tried again, blew again, so I had to relocate my french fry efforts to a new plug. Things went a bit more smoothly after that, though I didn't realize it took nearly twenty minutes for the oil to preheat. Duh. By the time I had put in the first batch of fries, everyone had finished eating already, but they turned out delicious nonetheless.
- Lots of potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4 -1/2 inch strips
- Lots of oil
Preheat the oil to 375 F. Pat the raw french fries dry. Put some in the preheated oil and fry for 3-4 minutes. Let cool for about 10 min. Then fry again for 10-12 min. If you use a deep fat fryer, do not fill the basket completely full. Even 2/3 full like it said was pushing it; I nearly had the oil foam over the first time. A little alarming, to say the least. We cut them into 1/4 in wedges, and they probably didn't need quite that long the second go-around, but they were still really good. After they are done and all a crispy golden color, spread them out on some paper towels to get off excess oil and sprinkle with salt to taste. Then eat them all up!
Note: 5 lbs of potatoes can feed 12 people easily.
Another note: I don't really recommend doing this without a deep fat fryer unless you feel really adventurous or are only doing a small batch. I had to do 3 big batches total in my fryer; it would have taken forever in a pan on the stove. Plus I could see it being really tricky keeping the oil at the right temperature on the stove. And the right temperature is really important: if you keep it right at 375, your fries will come out crispy, not burnt and not soggy with oil, and will generally be healthier because they didn't absorb as much oil during cooking.
I forgot to take pictures of the fries when they were done, sadly, and I already donated the rest to my patient brother and sister-in-law who put up with all the hot oil smells, bacon grease smells, and frantic calls about the circuit breaker (and also with me borrowing their Worcestershire sauce, since I don't own any). So just imagine delicious french fries, crispier than you usually get at McDonalds and tastier too.
The apple beer donated by another cousin in plentiful quantities was the perfect compliment to the meal. I thought about making fried cookies too, but by the time I finished the hamburgers, bacon, and fries (with lots of help), everyone was pretty much done eating and stuffed to the gills. They will have to wait with the Polish dogs for another day. We didn't get around to eating those either.
I have to say, this is the first time I've actually eaten a whole Luther burger. I normally opt for the bun. However, I felt adventurous tonight, and I must say they were pretty good. Different, but good. It helped to have smaller patties that fit the donut better. And I was also starving by the time I got to eat one, so I wasn't too picky. :)
Overall, I was quite pleased with how it all turned out. Stay tuned tomorrow for another (hopefully good) recipe recommendation, this time dessert...