Lean and Mean Burgers and Fries
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Yesterday, Bill and I got a chance to see our granddaughter attend her circus class. It was amazing! I have to admit that, in spite of its horrible traffic and exorbitant cost of housing, Portland is a great place for raising kids – if you have the money, that is.
Afterwards, we went to this amazing boulangerie for brunch. I have never seen so many spectacular and beautiful breads in my entire life. It made me want to rush home and start baking some.
Bill and I split an egg salad sandwich on a croissant – it was pretty much to die for.
The night before, we had gotten burritos from a food cart at a place called Cartlandia. It’s just a big parking lot with loads of food carts, all featuring different cuisines. It was clean and well lit, with cute twinkly lights all around. In the middle were a bunch of picnic tables, but it was way too windy and freezing for that. But in the summer, it would be awesome. All in all, it was a very indulgent and fun weekend, food-wise.
Which led me to want to come home and make a bacon cheeseburger, right? I was on a roll.
I was all for it, but Bill said he really didn’t want that (that’s weird!). So, I ended up making a couple of fairly naked burgers.
For the oven fries, I preheated the oven to 425°. I grabbed one nice-sized russet from the pantry, peeled it and sliced it into thin strips – about 1/3 of an inch, I’d guess. I drizzled the rimmed baking sheet with olive oil, tossed the fries in it, and gave them a bit of salt and pepper.
At this point, I preheated my cast iron grill pan on the stove top, on medium high. Here’s an awesome grill pan on Amazon, if you don’t have one. They give you nice grill marks and keep your food out of the fat and are very reasonable, cost-wise!
The fries went into the hot oven for about 10 minutes. Then I flipped them and gave them about 10 minutes more. While they were in there, I laid out two English muffins on a separate baking sheet, and very lightly buttered them.
While my fries were happily baking away, I made the burgers, using 4 percent lean ground beef, and sprinkled them with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. When my grill pan was smoking hot, I added a little olive oil. My burger was only 2 ounces (an eighth of a pound), so no guilt there. Needless to say, it didn’t take long to cook!
Then, I only used a bit of ketchup and brown mustard, and topped it with a small handful of fresh spinach.
When the fries came out of the oven, I turned on the broiler and popped the English Muffins in and toasted them (actually, I sort of over-toasted them, but they were still good.
That was it! Our dinner still felt like comfort food, but guilt-free. Guess I’m back on the right track.
Enjoy some guilt-free comfort food soon!