So called because Aedy and Josh loved these from an early age. I like making my own because you can make nice thick juicy burgers and know what is in them. Here’s what you do.
Buy mince to make enough 150g burgers for your needs (i.e. 600g makes 4 large burgers). Preferably buy fatty mince (10-18%) because lean steak mince (5%) will be a bit dry. Put the mince in a bowl with a tablespoon of tomato ketchup per burger, plus salt and pepper. Mush up with your hands and when mixed, form burger shaped burgers. You don’t need anything more special than your hands to do that. Lakeland keep your burger presses! What makes a true Daddy Burger is hidden cheese. Take a chunk of cheese and hide it completely inside each burger – best do that before you flatten it out. Now fry or grill each side until the burger is cooked through. The cheese will melt and ooze out spectacularly when cut.
Serve with all the trimmings – in a burger bun with your choice of tomato relish, iceberg lettuce, sliced tomato, mayo, sliced gherkin, grilled bacon, large flat grilled mushroom, more cheese or all of the above. If you do that spear it with a kebab skewer to look cool. Skin on fries, sweet potato fries or wedges are all legitimate accompaniments.
After many years of trialling difference recipes, the method I use from memory seems to work reliably so here it is, committed to posterity. This makes four huge portions or six sensible ones.
- 750g lean beef mince
- 1 onion
- 1 stick of celery
- 2 carrots
- 3 rashers of bacon
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed and chopped
- 1 tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 Oxo cube
- 1 tbs tomato paste
- 8 basil leaves (or 1 tsp dried)
- 1 wineglass of red wine
- 450ml milk
- lump of butter or equivalent
- 30-40g plain flour
- 1 bay leaf
- another carrot and stick of celery left whole
- 200g cheddar cheese grated
- 9 sheets dried lasagne
- oil, salt, pepper
First chop the onion, celery, carrots and bacon finely. Heat the oil in a large pan and stir-fry until soft but not coloured. Add the mince and garlic, and continue stir frying until all pink has gone from the mince. Add the tinned tomatoes. Crumble the oxo cube into the tin and fill the tin with boiling water. Tip into the pan. Add the basil, red wine and tomato paste. Simmer covered for one hour.
Meanwhile start the white sauce by putting the milk, bay leaf, extra carrot and celery stick into the milk with four whole peppercorns. It helps to chop the carrot and celery very roughly into big chunks. Bring the milk to the boil then switch off and leave until you make the cheese sauce.
After the meat has been simmering 40 minutes, make the sauce. Strain the flavoured milk and discard the vegetable bits. Heat the butter gently in another pad until melted, add the flour and cook away until it bubbles. Add the strained milk and stir like crazy to mix, then heat the sauce, stirring constantly, until it thickens. You want it to be a thick creamy consistency. You might need to adjust the amount of flour used with practice. Add three quarters of the cheese and melt it in to make a smooth creamy sauce.
When your meat is ready, assemble the lasagne thus: take a lasagne dish and put a thin layer of meat sauce on the bottom. Put three sheets of lasagne over to cover. Repeat three times. Pour the cheese sauce over the top and spread it out. Sprinkle over the remaining cheese and bake at 190C for 30 minutes. Awesome.
My favourite way with lamb – shoulder or leg.
- Lamb joint
- 50g butter
- 1tbs wholegrain mustard
- 1 tbs fresh chopped marjoram
- 500g red peppers approx, chopped into chunks
- 500g aubergine approx, chopped into chunks
- Olive oil
Mix the butter, mustard and marjoram. Cut slits in the lamb fat and smear the surface of the joint with butter rubbing into the slits. Put the vegetables in the bottom of your roasting tray and swill about to coat in olive oil. Put the lamb on top on a rack or tuck in if you don’t have a rack. Roast according to weight ( probably 190C for 20 minutes plus 25 mins/500g ). Watch the veg don’t burn. Stir around from time to time so they don’t char too badly. When the meat is cooked let it rest for 15 minutes before serving. The taste will be amazing and the veg will make a fabulous accompaniment. New potatoes and green beans would be perfect.
A Quick Version and Longer Version. The quick version uses a tin of lentils but if you are making this for a bunch of people it is a lot cheaper to use dried green or Puy lentils and cook them. This takes another 30 minutes or so but it is no bother.
Ingredients (For One) – easily multiplied up for more people.
- Tin of lentils (for quick version)or…
- 75g dried green lentils (for slow cheaper version)
- 150ml vegetable stock (for slow cheaper version)
- 2 or 3 sausages
- One small carrot
- One stick of celery
- A quarter of an onion
- Sunflower oil for frying
Put oil in a frying pan and brown the sausages. When cooked take them out and put to one side. Chop the vegetables fairly small and add to the pan. Fry gently until soft and golden.
Quick version: add the tin of lentils and cooked sausages. Heat through for five minutes, if it is a little dry add a splash of water. Adjust seasoning and serve.
Longer version: add 75g dried green or Puy lentils per person and 150ml stock per person. Cover and cook for 30-40 minutes according to the instructions on the lentils packet. Keep an eye on it from time to time, if it is drying out add a bit more water. Adjust seasoning and serve. Very good with fresh French bread.
There are many, many different variations on this. True Texans would not want chilli adulterated with what we regularly put in it but this is a good version for every-day. You can make a big mix of chilli and keep the leftovers to make a tortilla grill or toppings for jacket potatoes. The following is for four hungry people.
- 2 onions
- 500g mince beef
- 3 cloves garlic
- splash of oil
Fry these up in a pan until all the pink has gone. Add
- 1 or 2 tsp chilli powder. Olwyn likes it at level 1. I like it at level 2. You can always add but you can’t take away
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tbs plain flour
Fry another minute. Then add
- 450 ml beef stock (Oxo cube is fine). You could use part red wine and part stock.
- 3 tbs tomato puree
- 1 tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 tin red kidney beans
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp caster sugar
- salt and pepper
- 1 tsp dried oregano
Bubble up and simmer 45 minutes, covered. Stir from time to time so it doesn’t stick to the bottom. Add a bit more water if it looks too dry. Serve with cornbread, rice, and if you need to ramp up the heat, some chopped jalopenos.
Spice Mix (makes 10 tbs or 14tbs – it will keep in a jar):
- 4 tbs paprika
- 2 tbs fennel (ground)
- 1 tbs ground coriander
- 2 tbs salt
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp cayenne
- 3/4 tsp ground black pepper
- Optional: 4tbs sugar
To make the sausages:
- 500g minced lamb or beef
- 120 g fat
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped 9or paste)
- 2 tbs chopped fresh coriander leaves
- 2 or 3 tsp harissa paste
- 2 tbs spice mix above
Mix all the above. Make sausages in your sausage machine, with or without casings. If you don’t have a sausage machine, you can hand-roll sausage shapes, mould them around skewers or make little patties like mini burgers. Fry or grill and use with North African sides like couscous, roast vegetables, hummus, olives, flatbread.
You could use any mince for these.
- 450g mince (beef or pork preferably)
- 2 egg yolks
- 1/2 small onion chopped
- 2-6 tbs grated cooked (not pickled) beetroot
- 2tbs chopped capers
- Salt and pepper
- 1tbs chopped chives
Mix. Form into four patties. Fry or grill both sides. You can either serve conventionally in a bap or do the Swedish thing of serving with mashed potato, a green vegetable and lingonberry or redcurrant sauce. Make a gravy by putting a couple of tablespoons of plain flour in your now oily pan, stir around to soak up all the tasty juices, add 250ml stock, heat until thickened and bubble a bit more. I like to use vegetable or chicken stock and stir in a bit of cream at the end. Very wicked. Don’t forget the lingonberry jelly, this makes the dish special. Oh and a lager too.
For some reason this really appeals – probably because African recipes are fairly rare. For four, you need:
- 1 red chilli
- 2cm root ginger, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed and chopped
- 300ml lamb, chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1tbs tomato puree
- 400g can chopped tomatoes
- 6tbs palm oil (boo hiss, I know, but it is authentic and makes it a great red colour)
- 500g lean lamb cubed
- 200g spinach
- 2 eggs beaten
First make a sauce by blitzing the chilli, ginger, garlic, puree, tomatoes and half the onion.
Stir-fry the other half of the onion and the lamb in the red oil. Add the sauce and stock, bubble up and simmer, covered, for 40-50 minutes. Stir in the spinach and let it wilt. Drizzle in the egg and simmer two more minutes. Serve with rice or flatbread.
Tastes even better than I hoped. This is a thick, rich tasty bowl of soup/stew from Portugal that is a meal in a bowl with bread on the side. Enough here for 6 small bowls or 4 full-on meals.
- 1 onion
- 1 garlic clove
- 600g floury potatoes peeled and cut into small chunks
- 220g chorizo cut into chunks
- 1.5 litres vegetable stock
- 300g kale finely shredded
- olive oil
- Dried chilli flakes
Heat the oil in a deep pan. Gently fry the onion and garlic until starting to soften. Add the chorizo to cook a bit and release their oil. Add the potato and stock, bring to the boil and simmer 20 minutes. Mush the potatoes down with a masher to make the soup thick. Add the kale, a teaspoon of salt and a mad twist of black pepper. Cook 8 minutes more. Serve in bowls and sprinkle chilli flakes on top.
This makes enough for 1Kg mince. If you have a smaller quantity of mince just divide the taco mix in proportion and save in a jar for next time. It keeps fine.
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1.5 tsp cumin powder
- 1.5 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 0.5 tsp cayenne pepper
- 0.5tsp salt
To make taco mince, dry fry the mince until it is no longer pink; add the taco mix, fry a few minutes more; add 4 tbs tomato puree per kilo of mince and 250ml water, bubble away for 20 minutes. You may need to add a bit more water if you like it gloopy.
Great on tacos, filled wraps, on potato skins and in jacket potato with a combo of Jalapeno peppers, grated cheese, chopped tomato, chopped avacado, sour cream, salsa, fresh coriander leaves, shredded iceberg lettuce, chopped red onion. What’s not to like.