Thursday, July 2, 2015

The Italian Burger

My son, Caden, who is six, LOVES a good cheeseburger. You might even call him a connoisseur. He says he loves them because 'they taste so good' and 'the cheese is good too.' So, over the years I have made quite a few. Every once in a while I break out of the ordinary and make a buffalo burger or even a lamb one. I usually try to keep the spices on the down-low because his young taste buds think black pepper is too spicy.

I was very excited about this challenge because I'm always looking for new ingredients. I like the combination Cluck 'n Moo uses for the beef and chicken because it's not only healthier, but tasty too. I find the spice mix I used doesn't overwhelm the meat but compliments it. And according to Caden, it's very yummy. He actually asked for extra basil on the side!

The Italian Burger
by Holly

1 pound Cluck 'n Moo Ground 
1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning (see recipe below)
1/2 Tablespoon kosher salt
4 Telera rolls or your favorite burger bun
1 ball of fresh mozzarella cheese, cut into 8 slices
Sun-dried tomato spread (about 2 Tablespoons per burger)
Mild pepper rings
1 small bunch of fresh basil, leaves washed and dried, coarsely chopped
Cooking spray

In medium bowl, blend together the ground meat, Italian seasoning and salt. Divide into 4 thin patties. Make a small indentation with thumb in center to ensure even cooking.

Heat grill or grill pan (coat with cooking spray.) Cook burgers until they reach 165°F (no pink remaining) about 3-4 minutes each side. Do not press the burgers down while cooking. Place 2 slices of the mozzarella cheese on each burger. Cover pan with lid and cook another minute or until the cheese is slightly melted. Watch closely as to not burn.

Place each patty on a bun with a generous coating of the sun-dried tomato spread, a few mild pepper rings and a couple of basil leaves.

Italian seasoning
by Italian Seasoning

3 Tablespoons dried basil
3 Tablespoons dried oregano
3 Tablespoons dried parsley
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Cluck N Moo Long Boy Burgers…When you Need a Little Change!

Have you ever had the hankering (hey, I’m a Texan, I can say that!) for just simply grilling up some burgers and hot dogs? And you got everything ready to go, had it all planned out, maybe even had the grill up and running…and then the sky opens up and starts pouring buckets? Out of nowhere? Yeah, that happens quite a bit here in Houston. It happened to us last weekend. So, I have learned that it’s always advisable to have a Plan B in place - you know, a “just in case” backup plan. I stumbled upon a recipe for these “Long Boy Burgers” awhile back and I was intrigued. I’d never made anything like them. I searched around some more and found that quite a few people are in on this little secret that I knew nothing of. Hmm…Conspiracy?!? It’s possible. Regardless, I gave them a shot one rainy Friday evening, using the Cluck 'n Moo Ground meat mix. I must say that, although a few steps in the directions seemed a bit odd, they really do work. And they’re awesome. Enjoy!

Cluck N Moo Long Boy Burgers…When you Need a Little Change!
by Chris
Adapted from “Long Boy Burgers” by The English Kitchen

6 hoagie buns, split in half horizontally (to make 12 open-faced sandwiches)
1 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs (I used garlic, but regular would be fine)
1 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
1/2 cup evaporated milk
4 Tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon ketchup
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon horseradish sauce (not grated horseradish)
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon barbecue sauce
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 Tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (or more, to taste)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper (or more, to taste)
1 1/2 pounds Cluck 'n Moo Ground meat
12 slices cheese (I used provolone, but you can use your favorite)
Arugula (or other greens of your preference, for serving)
Steak sauce or extra barbecue sauce, for serving

Begin by placing the hoagie buns onto a sheet pan and into the unheated oven, cut side up. Turn on the oven to preheat to 425°F, leaving the buns in to toast for the first 10 minutes of the preheating cycle. Remove the buns and set aside while the oven continues to heat to temperature. Mix together the bread crumbs, onion powder, milk, ketchup, horseradish sauce, Worcestershire sauce, barbecue sauce, thyme, granulated garlic, egg, salt, pepper and meat mixture until just combined. Divide the meat mixture into fairly even portions and place the uncooked meat (yes, uncooked - I told you it was a bit odd) on the cut side of the buns. Be sure that the meat ENTIRELY covers the bread, or the edges will burn! Cook at 425°F for about 20 minutes (as the meat has both beef and chicken in the mixture, it is recommended that it reaches a cooked temperature of 165°F - please check your temperature if you are not sure.
Remove the burgers from the oven and top with the cheese of your choice. Heat for about 3 minutes more, or until cheese is melted. Garnish with the arugula or with other toppings of your choice. If you care to, feel free to use the extra sauce(s) to your liking (we did like a small drizzle of steak sauce on the top of ours.)

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Half-Moon Taco Burgers

Ground meat isn't unusual in a taco, but I decided to change things up by making half-moon shaped burgers that would fit neatly inside a tortilla.

I flavored them with peppers and chili powder, melted cheese on top, and served them in warm tortillas with guacamole and pepper.

The result was pretty danged good.

The meat I used was a combination of beef and chicken from a company called Cluck 'n Moo that specializes in...well, clucks and moos.

Because the meat includes chicken, it needs to be cooked to a safe temperature - no rare burgers with this stuff.

You can make these less spicy by using mild pepper and mild chile powder, or make it more spicy by using hotter peppers and chile powder. And of course, you can add extra spice with your choice of condiments, like peppers or salsa.

Half-Moon Taco Burgers
By Donna

1 pound Cluck 'n Moo ground chicken and beef
1 4-ounce can diced Hatch chiles (hot or mild, your choice)
2 teaspoons chili powder (hot or mild, your choice)
1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
1 cup shredded cheese (I used a mix of cheeses, but any good-melting cheese will work)

In a medium bowl, combine the ground meat, chiles and chili powder.

Divide the meat into four portions. Shape each portion into a half-moon shape that will fit into your tortilla. I used 6-inch tortillas and made the burgers slightly smaller that the tortillas - keep in mind that the tortillas need to wrap the meat.

Heat your grill. Sprinkle the burgers with salt as desired and cook, flipping as needed, until just about done. Divide the cheese onto the tops of the four burgers, close the grill and let them cook until the cheese is almost melted.

When the cheese is almost melted, place the tortillas on the grill (on a cooler part of the grill, if possible.) Place the burgers on the tortillas and close the grill again. Cook until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are warmed.

Serve with your favorite taco toppings. I used guacamole and pickled jalapenos. Other options are shredded lettuce, salsa, cilantro, crema or chopped fresh tomatoes.

Monday, June 29, 2015

The Cluck 'n Moo Challenge

Look for Jennifer's Banh Mi Burger recipe coming in July
37 Cooks gets the opportunity to work with a lot of fun companies. Some are well-known, and others are a little less mainstream.

This time, we're working with a company called Cluck 'n Moo, and their product is called...Cluck 'n Moo. It's a blend of antibiotic-free chicken and grass-fed beef, ground into a product that boasts 52% less fat and 34% fewer calories than traditional grain-fed beef burgers. It's gluten-free, too!

The company sells Cluck ‘n Moo burgers, as well as 1-pound packages of ground meat. The cooks at 37 Cooks all received the ground product to make their own burgers or other creations and they did a great job.

Earlier this month we gave you a sneak peek of a Smoky Black and Bloo Burger and a Chimichurri Burger, and now we're gearing up for a whole lot of tasty recipes that are perfect for summer. Or, really for any time.

The Cluck 'n Moo blend was created by trend-setting

marketer Steve Gold, who came up with the idea the old fashioned way: At the kitchen table. He was grilling burgers for his family when his wife, Helene, sighed that she dreamed of a great-tasting burger she could enjoy without the fat guilt.

By adding chicken to the beef, the fat content was lowered, while the blend still has great flavor.

We encourage you to visit Cluck 'n Moo on Facebook and follow them on Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs
by Sarah M.

Olive oil
1/2 cup carrots, finely diced
1/2 cup celery, finely diced
1/2 cup white onion, finely diced
Salt and pepper
1 pound ground chicken, lean
1/2 cup good blue cheese crumbles
1/4 cup plus extra Frank’s Red Hot sauce (or use your favorite)
1 egg
2-3 Tablespoons bread crumbs (I used Italian seasoning breadcrumbs)

Heat a non-stick pan on the stove over medium-high heat. Add enough oil to coat the pan and add in the carrots, celery and onion; season generously with salt and pepper. Sauté mixture until onion is translucent and vegetables become soft; approximately 10-15 minutes. Transfer mixture to a bowl and let cool (I popped mine into the freezer for a few minutes.)

In a large mixing bowl, add the ground chicken and season with a little salt and a good amount of cracked pepper. Add in the vegetable mixture, blue cheese, hot sauce, egg and breadcrumbs. Mix to combine well. (Be careful to not over mix or the meatballs will become tough.) If the mixture seems to “wet” add more breadcrumbs.

Preheat oven to 400°F. Form meatballs into desired size, just make sure they are all the uniform. Place onto a baking sheet lined with the Mrs. Anderson's Non-Stick Silicone Baking Mat from Harold Import Company.

Spoon on a little bit more hot sauce onto each meatball. Bake at 400°F for about 20-25 minutes, then broil them for about 5 minutes, or until they become nice and brown on top.

To re-heat, spoon over a little more hot sauce and let get to temperature in a low oven.

Serve with a good blue cheese dressing with celery on the side. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Strawberry Puff Pastry Flowers with Lemon Mascarpone Whipped Cream

Strawberry Puff Pastry Flowers with Lemon Mascarpone Whipped Cream
by Sarah K.
Makes 12 pastries

Strawberry Puff Pastry Flowers

Frozen puff pastry, thawed
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar 
12 small strawberries

Preheat oven to 425°F.

On a lightly-floured surface, roll a sheet of puff pastry out to 1/4" thickness. Sprinkle dough with granulated sugar, pressing lightly into the dough.

Using a flower-shaped cookie cutter with diameter approximately 2-2.5 times the width of your strawberries, cut out flower-shaped pieces of dough.

Transfer dough to baking sheet fitted with Mrs. Anderson's silicone bread crisping mat.

Cut the tops off each strawberry. Place a strawberry in the middle of each flower and bake for 25 min, until the flower petals are puffed up and golden brown.

Once out of the oven, brush strawberries lightly with honey.

Let the pastries cool for 5 minutes, then serve with tea and a dollop of Lemon Mascarpone Whipped Cream (recipe below) on the side.

Lemon Mascarpone Whipped Cream 
by Sarah K

1/2 cup heavy or whipping cream
1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
Zest of one lemon
1/4 cup mascarpone cheese.

While the pastries are baking, whip cream with sugar in a bowl until it begins to form soft peaks. Add the lemon zest (optional: Reserve a bit of the zest for garnishing) and continue beating for half a minute. Add the mascarpone and whip until it forms stiff peaks.