Yeah….Secret Agent Man doesn’t really use his deck, nor does he have a grill. So what do you do on Memorial Day when you just HAVE to grill out – it is downright un-American not to – and Target is sold out of grills? (Even if they had a grill in stock, I can’t guarantee I wouldn’t have run away screaming from the toothless woman at Target who was “helping” us.)
You head down to the Shopper’s Club grocery store and buy a nifty $16 “Grill-It-Kit”! It included “Everything but the food!”
This cookout seemed headed for disaster. Could this tiny grill actually cook food? I grabbed Secret Agent Man’s Good Stuff Eatery cookbook for some of Spike Mendelsohn’s burger tips and fired up my black cast iron skillet (every Southern cook’s secret weapon!) just in case. Even if the grill collapsed and set the deck on fire, I was not going to let it ruin dinner!
While the burgers cooked on the little grill that could, I whipped up some reduced-fat “Good Stuff” sauce – Spike’s burger spread with mayo, molasses, ketchup, rice wine vinegar and salt. I would normally never used reduced-fat mayo because it’s, well, weird. And I love mayonnaise. But “reduced-fat mayo” is what was in the fridge so I went with it. I want a Good Stuff sauce do-over because this definitely was not the look or taste I was going for.
I rarely eat buns with my burgers any more (gets in the way of all the BEEF!) and usually wrap them in lettuce leaves, but today I opted for some whole wheat buns from Trader Joe’s. Spike recommends toasting the buns to enhance all the flavors and he’s right; it makes a difference! He also suggests putting the burgers and all the toppings on the bun and then wrapping the burgers in wax paper to let the flavors meld. I think this is the BEST tip!
To my surprise, the grill worked and the burgers turned out. NO, they more than turned out. They were really good! Have a look:
It’s not Good Stuff’s Farmhouse Cheeseburger (one of my favorite cheat meals), but it’s pretty darn close! In fact, I think I prefer making my own version of the Farmhouse Cheeseburger at home because I can decide what I want on it and because I don’t have to wait in line or wait for a table! Wrapping up the burger in wax paper and waiting a few minutes is a crucial step, and I think it adds a little suspense and excitement:)
I am ashamed to admit: I did not believe in the $16 Grill-It-Kit grill. Now I do! In fact, I just told Secret Agent Man that I don’t even want one of them big ole’ fancy $69 Weber Kettle Grills.
Well, that’s not entirely true:)