|May 12, 2021||Posted by Wendy Perry under burgers, Carolina Country, cheesy, fun food, gluten free, griddle cooking, grill thrills, Heritage Pork, low carb, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, party foods, published, sandwiches, skillet cookery|
Published in Carolina Country Magazine May 2015
Smashburgers! or Smash Burgers? No matter which you way you prefer, they’re everywhere these days… but do you know what that actually means?
My definition is a good old ground meat burger, smashed somehow or other, and cooked so that you get a nice, uneven edge from “smashing” that has little nooks and crannies with crunchy little bits and pieces and a crusty bite to them.
The kind we love from our favorite hole-in-the-wall grills and diners!
Most smashburgers are made with ground beef. But y’all know I don’t do “most.” That’s why I made these with good old NC ground pork! If you can’t source from a local farmer, you can find ground pork in any grocery store… it’s what I use in my egg rolls too!
When I was growing up, this is how mama made hamburgers, because she near’bout burnt everything she cooked… and our burgers were no exception. They were crunchy alright! But actually real good. Even if they were shriveled up little things… the steamed buns daddy insisted on (and me too to this day) made them tolerable while lost inside the bun. They just didn’t have a “name” way back then. But now I know, she was cooking smashburgers!
For me, there are 5 things that make up a really great smashburger. The first three… the key to getting that crunch is the right fat ratio (at least 80/20 fat), making them not very big (3-4 ounces) so you can smash big and thin, and a very hot cooking surface… like a preheated cast iron skillet or griddle.
These days, lots of folks have Blackstone griddles… found at varying price points here and there (self included), and I love that thing! It’s perfect for making smashburgers and with this recipe, making the “toasty cheese” alongside them! You can cook these in a hot skillet indoors, but because of the high heat and grease, I highly recommend cooking your smashers outside. If you don’t have a griddle, a cast iron skillet works great!
Number four… as for the cheese, you can use any kind of melty cheese, but I’m a big fan of hoop cheese! (Read about hoop cheese here at North Carolina’s Ashe County Cheese.)
I grew up with it. And it’s often seen… little slices wrapped in “cellophane” with saltine crackers by the register at country stores. Just right to grab for breakfast on the way to work, or a mid-morn or afternoon snack when taking a break from work on the farm. Enough to “tide you over” till lunch or suppertime.
Mama, not being a cook, would sometimes melt hoop cheese in her cast iron skillet and throw some canned biscuits in the oven. Supper would be biscuits and cheese… spoonsful of the ooey gooey melted cheese over top of those split biscuits. I can see that good stuff now… with that little golden orange ring of grease around the edge that cooked out of that melted cheese.
Last but certainly worth special attention… really good rolls are the crowning glory for your burgs. You’ll want something that’s going to hold that luscious burger without it falling to pieces while you savor every crunchy bite! My favorite are potato rolls, that only get better with the brushed-on butter and light grilling inside out, so you get a little soft with a little crisp too.
As for toppings, offer up anything that suits your fancy. I like to keep those simple on my smashburgers, so not one bit of the crunchy goodness is lost.
Memorial day is almost here… and a perfect time to fix a bunch of smashburgers and have a grand ole time with those you love! A Smash Bash… to celebrate and remember those who have served our nation to protect the land of the free… home of the brave!
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Get your burg on y’all!
When the burger craving comes upon us, nothing else will do. Smashburgers: those delectable little patties with a bit of crunch — the kind we seek out at our favorite hole-in-the-wall burger joints. I used NC ground pork for these, topped with hoop cheese.
- 2 pounds ground pork (at least 80/20 fat)
- 2 tablespoons ‘everything bagel’ seasoning
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- salt (optional-due to saltiness in cheese)
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil in bowl
- Buns (potato or brioche)
- 1 stick melted butter
- 1 pound wedge hoop cheese
Place griddle or large cast iron skillet on grate. Preheat grill (or griddle) to highest heat.
Combine pork and seasonings and mix as little as possible. (The more you handle, the tougher the meat will be.)
Divide into 12 balls. Roll in bowl of oil and place onto hot griddle or skillet. Do not move for at least 1 minute. Flip, then using the bottom of a mason jar, “smash” the burger to make it thin. Cook about 2 minutes, turn and cook the other side about the same to get a good sear. Stack in pan to the side to keep warm.
For the buns, brush the insides with melted butter. Grill the buttered sides while the burgers cook. Place burgers onto “ungrilled” outsides of buns (buttered side out).
Put mounds of hoop cheese into hot skillet or on griddle. As it melts, scoop a portion with spatula onto each burger and eat as is or add toppings.
|May 5, 2021||Posted by Wendy Perry under bacon & belly, Carolina Country, cheesy, doggie delights, gluten free, ice cream & frozen treats, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, pet treats, published|
These homemade dog treats are a cool treat on hot summer days for your fur baby pooches! Make this easy Bacon Cheeseburger Ice Brittle for yours to have on hand for a frosty treat from the freezer.
|February 18, 2021||Posted by Wendy Perry under Carolina Country, casseroles, cheesy, Mexican/Southwestern, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, published, rotisserie|
This one needs a bit of planning ahead to cook the pork, but using one large butt yields lots of meat to freeze to make several batches of these easy, creamy Carnita Enchiladas Suiza. Olé!
|February 14, 2021||Posted by Wendy Perry under Aunt Dee Dee's Kitchen, Carolina Country, cheesy, gluten free, grits, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, published, sensational sides|
Many long-lived mills here in North Carolina still stone grind the best grits. Slow cooked creamy grits pair well with so many dishes (and stand alone quite nicely, too). Seasoned with fresh rosemary and salty parmesan, enjoy them alongside my Savory Oxtail Stew.
|December 30, 2020||Posted by Wendy Perry under appetizers, Carolina Country, carolina gold oil, cheesy, honey, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, party foods, published, roasted goodness, Toaster Oven, wendy's signature recipes|
Sometimes we just need “a little something” to nibble on — roasting grapes and serving over warm, softened cheese on crostini is a new favorite! The grapes become nice and “jammy” and oh-so-good with a drizzle of herbed oil, vinegar and honey. No exact measurements needed for this one.
|October 21, 2020||Posted by Wendy Perry under apples, breads, breakfast, Carolina Country, casseroles, cheesy, Christmas, dressings, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, published, sensational sides, Thanksgiving|
You know it’s fall when the aroma of baked apples and fresh herbs fills the air! Roasted pork, chicken — this stuffing makes just the right side dish. Or crisp up leftover dressing in the toaster oven for a banner breakfast with bacon, sausage and a drizzle o’ maple syrup!
|April 8, 2020||Posted by Wendy Perry under appetizers, bacon & belly, buttahhhh, cheesy, cook'n with NC goodies, corn, crab, duke's mayo!, Easter, fun food, gluten free, low carb, Mt. Olive Pickles, Our State Mag, party foods, product recipe development, published, sensational sides, wendy's signature recipes|
While recipe developer and food stylist at Our State Magazine, I was asked to give a classic deviled egg a North Carolina twist. These recipes inspired by our culture are fun to make and good to eat.
|January 27, 2020||Posted by Wendy Perry under appetizers, Carolina Country, cheesy, fun food, Italian, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, party foods, published|
Fondue… bread bowl pizza fondue! Try these fun ways to enjoy a simple supper or for a crowd at your next gathering. Get creative with fondue and dippers… here are a couple of favorites. Which do you like? Bread Bowl Pepperoni or Hawaiian Pizza Fondue?
|January 20, 2020||Posted by Wendy Perry under breakfast, Carolina Country, cheesy, country ham, gravy, here piggy piggy!, published|
Surprise your friends with a twist on eggs benedict… country ham and egg on top of buttery cheese pierogies drizzled with red eye “hollandaise!”
|December 2, 2019||Posted by Wendy Perry under appetizers, apples, cheesy, garden goodness, honey, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, party foods, pie please, product recipe development|
…a delightful sweet and savory tart to enjoy as an appetizer, side, with salad for brunch or as an outside-the-box dessert!
|August 23, 2019||Posted by Wendy Perry under cheesy, condiments & accompaniments, duke's mayo!, garden goodness, published, sensational sides, tomatoes, wendy's signature recipes|
Use firm and meaty ripe red tomatoes for these crispy cheesy fried red tomatoes! Spicy hot potato chips are perfect, but use your favorites (dill pickle are yummy)…
|July 31, 2019||Posted by Wendy Perry under avocado, baking (she said in terror), breads, cheesy, fun food, gluten free, low carb, wendy's signature recipes|
Cheesy gluten and carb free bagels… with a kick of cayenne and a dusting of crispy everything bagel dust!