Ellie made burgers!

>> Friday, October 24, 2008

We had hamburgers... well, cheeseburgers really... made in Ellie, my new 1.6 qt. crock pot! Now, a few people whined and complained, and said I obviously don't know what a crock pot is for, but darn if they weren't really good and didn't take much effort at all!

[Quick insert for mental visual: a 1.6 quart crock pot is about the width of a standard 2 cup tea pot, and half again as high. So it's small, but still useful. I could probably cook two regular cans of Campbell's soup in it, if I didn't put the lid on. (Since crocks cause the water level to rise, that could be disastrous!) But that at least should give some idea of how big this crock pot is.]

Usually when we buy hamburger, we buy a huge amount and the cut it into 1 lb sections and freeze them separately in freezer bags. We've realized how much faster they thaw if they're not in a large chunk, so when we put them in the bag we squash them flat so they look like pizzas when you glance in the freezer. Doing this also means that all I have to do is thaw it on a plate, cut it into pieces, and flip them into the frying pan! However, for whatever crazy reason, when I make hamburgers in my pan (I haven't got an indoor griddle) it takes 10 minutes of prep and 15 or 20 minutes on the stove plus fighting 3 cats off the whole time.

Total time fighting off cats: 30-40 minutes.

So instead of that, here's what I did:

First I put 4 pieces of rolled up tin foil tubes in the bottom of the crock pot in a square like Lincoln Logs. If you look up the Crock Pot Blog linked on the right and look up hamburgers, she did the same thing and put a picture as well. Putting the burger on the tin foil keeps it up out of the grease so it's not flat out boiling instead of roasting, or whatever the non-wet term is. While it turned out great this time, next time I plan to make my initial foil rolls larger; the bottom one wasn't completely out of the grease. (This also means you'll have a good half-inch of grease on the bottom to clean out later. Yay.)

So then I took:

1 lb. hamburger, flattened relatively thin.

Cut it into 4 pieces, two each of the same sizes. Over everything I put kosher salt and pepper, dried onion flakes, garlic salt, and savory, and then mexican blend cheese just on two of the four pieces. Then I took the other two and put them on top of the first two so I had basically two enormous hamburgers with stuff in the middle.

Put one hamburger carefully in the crock pot on top of the foil. Add 4 more pieces of foil and put the second one on top. Cook on high for 3 hours. (Mostly cuz that's all the time I had. You could feasibly cook it for 6 hours on low. Haven't tested it yet though.)

These burgers were the perfect size for the crock pot in both width and height! Yay!

However, because crock potting is a wet cooking method, while they were lovely and tender on the inside they were kinda gross and slimy on the out. So when it was time to eat, I popped each one into a hot pan for 30 seconds each side to crisp it up.

Total time fighting off cats: 3 minutes - 2 while prepping, 1 while cooking.

Put on home made bread (cuz that's what we had, but obviously hamburger buns are good too).

They were very tasty indeed, and a whole heckuva lot less hassle than my old method!

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About This Blog

Life is about changes; transitions from one place to another, from one purpose to another, from one being to another. They say that the person you are today is a completely different person from who you were ten years ago and who you'll be ten years from now. So far, at the age of 33, I've had four major transitions in my life which redefined who I am. Two years into the results of the most recent transition I am again - still - exploring how God is shaping me. Over the next few months I hope to review my past and set goals for the future, and embrace the next adventure of rediscovering me.
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