This Blog contains recipes, thoughts, whats cooking at home and mostly things related to Bar-B-Que. Come on in, look around & read up on my
"Bar-B-Que Adventures"

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Bacon Cheddar Turtle Burger

Today was a beautiful day here in Nebraska. Sunny & 71 degrees, after cleaning up the leftover leaves in the yard & trimming the roses i decided to do a little practice run on the Egg for an upcoming event here in town. I found these burger`s while surfing the Smokering Forum & thought what a novel idea. This burger just might win the contest. So....
What they are is a bacon wrapped burger with hot dog pieces sectioned for the legs, tail and head. First off make a bacon weave with 5-6 strips of thin cut bacon as such. 6 strips of bacon makes a jumbo sized burger so you might have to use less bacon. Your cardiologist would agree.

Next place a slice of sharp cheddar cheese(lower melting point) on the bacon. Make a hamburger patty to your liking seasoned as you wish. Then fold up the bacon ends over what will be the bottom of the patty. Carefully flip the bacon wrapped patty over onto a piece of tinfoil.

Cut up some Hebrew National hot dogs or any hot dog that you like as long as its a skinless hot dog. Cut the legs to two inches and the head to about three inches long. Cut one for the tail trimming to a point. Insert limbs between the bacon weaves on the sides of the burger to simulate a turtle. Cut 1/4 inch slits in the leg ends to simulate the webbed toes of a turtle, these will fan out while cooking.

While this is not a difficult task, it does require a bit of patience. Fasten the limbs with tooth picks to hold it together while cooking. When finished cooking remove the toothpicks the limbs will stay in place for plating.
Here are three finished turtles ready for the grill.

I set up the BGE with lump charcoal & fired it up. When ashed over I assembled the EGG & loaded the burgers. I ran the Egg at 350 degrees for 45 minutes finishing the burgers at 165 degrees internal temp. Here we are fresh off the Egg.

Add lettuce, tomatoes, ketchup, mustard, mayo or whatever you like and dig in.
Neat looking treat and tasty too. For an extra juicy burger make your patties with half hamburger and half pork sausage. As you can see some of my Turtle Burgers toes fanned out a little too much so make smaller toes next time. All in all not a real difficult burger. I made the 50/50 pork & hamburger patties which was juicy and tasty. Different from a regular ole burger. Kids love the novel idea too.

Thanks for reading about my latest adventure in outdoor cooking.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Big Green Egg

Hello all you busy bloggers...
Last weekend i decided to purchase a medium sized Big Green Egg (BGE). This is a smoker/grill i have wanted for some time now due to its reputation as being a very efficient cooker. Saturday morning i went to Smok`n Buddies Grills & Gear here in Norfolk Ne. & looked over a few of them i decided on the medium one. I feel this would work out perfect for the wife & i. The kids are all grown up & gone so most meals its just me & the misses. If i need the extra room i can always fire up one of my other smokers or grill`s.

Here is the little dude, all 95 pounds of it.
Come to find out there was a sale on the BGE`s this month promoting there product for a upcoming Egg Fest next month. Package deal consisting of the Egg, the nest it sit`s in, side shelf`s, plate setter for indirect cooking, grate gripper tool, ash scrapper tool, a box of fire starters and a big ole bag of Big Green Egg lump charcoal all for a little over $800 dollars. Now i know what your all thinking... "that's not much of a sale" Let me tell ya once you fire this thing up and get to cooking you`ll wish ya spent more money & bought a bigger one. Yes... they cook that well. Easy to start up, holds the heat very well, recovers from opening the lid very fast & a very efficient smoker/grill. The food cooked on a BGE is moist and tender also.
After un-loading the cooker and some assembly, i load it up with some lump charcoal and a few chunks of apple & hickory wood. I fired up 3/4th a charcoal chimney of lump charcoal. Once that was ashed over and hot i dumped it in and closed the lid. While the cooker was coming up to temp i went inside to prep the meat.
First to go on was wings... got to have some wings! 14 wing sections all cleaned up & rinsed off.

I decided to try some of John Henry`s Apple Chipotle Rub. I was told its great on wings. Nice flavor with a bit of Chipotle kick.

Here we are all rubbed & happy ready for the smoker.

I also thought a Beef Chuck Roast would be good too. So i rubbed it down with some Dizzy Pig Cow Lick Steak Rub. A spicy beef rub, good on all cuts of beef.

Rubbed and ready.

Here we are all loaded up. A tight fit but a comfortable one. Plenty of room for a meal.

I adjusted the bottom vent to just slightly open, & the same for the top vent and watched it climb up from 200 degrees to where it settled at 275 degrees, perfect for getting the wing skin crispy.

After two hours it was time to take the Wings off and sample one or three. Wow was these wings good, a little bit of a kick from the Chipotle and a nice flavor from the smoke wood. Defiantly worth the wait, crispy skin and very moist. My kind of snack food.

Now its time for a "BBQ nap" while we wait for the Chuck Roast to finish. This took another five hours to cook for a total of seven hours to tender beefy goodness.
After my little nap, which took an hour or so... i went out and checked on the cooker and it was still setting right where i left it holding steady at 275 degrees. Very impressive, any little adjustment to the vents and the cooker would either rise or lower in temps.
Chuck Roast`s on the smoker need to cook to an internal temp of 200 to be fall apart tender. After a close eye on it and a hungry feeling i just couldn't wait any longer so i pulled it off the cooker at 185 internal and let it rest wrapped in foil and a towel to keep it warm.

While the meat rested for a spell i whipped up some Corn Bread muffins, Mexi-corn & Texas Style Ranch Beans. I opened up the roast & sliced up it. Warmed up the rest of the Wings for an appetizer to get my taste buds fired up. What a great meal all the food was perfect. The Roast was tender & juicy, the Wings had a nice kick with bite through skin. The Beans, Corn & Corn Bread made this meal a nice Texas Style treat.
Here is the finished plated meal.

For a first cook on this smoker/grill i am very impressed. This thing worked like a champ. Cooks great, easy to use, great bar-b-que flavor from the Big Green Egg lump charcoal & wood for smoke. Not the cheapest cooker but well worth the money. This thing is made out of thick ceramic so it will hold the heat & look great on the deck for years to come. You can also bake pizza & bread with it. The Dealer(Doug Ashmore) from Smok`n Buddies told me the BGE can dial up to 750 degrees for self cleaning & 400-450 degrees for grilling steaks. That should put a super sear on a Ribeye let me tell ya! So if your looking for a new cooker that can smoke/grill or baking, then check out a Big Green Egg. Once you have cooked on one you`ll wonder why you haven`t bought a BGE sooner.