The temps hit 90º at O’Hare, but it was a pleasant 90 – and, since we’re North and East and closer to the lake, it was a might bit cooler in our edge o’ the prairie. Still, Rich thought the evening perfect for firing up the Weber and grilling the onion, pineapple, and marinated beef for Banzai Burgers – my take on a favorite offering from Red Robin – opening conveniently nearby soon!
If I’d thought about it – I would’ve picked up some corn to grill – but the season is young, yet. We muddled through with burgers and potato salad and washed it all down with sparkling water and Rich’s mom’s favorite Arnold Palmers.
As it was, I’d planned enough ahead to make some fresh Challah rolls for the burgers and stash ‘em in the bread box; and the potato salad was good – it just would’ve been better if I’d thought to make it the night before.
For the burgers, I used some Omaha Steaks patties I’d gotten as part of a coupon deal – they’re quite nice, tho’ we prefer the ‘pub burgers’ offered by one of our local markets. Whatever you choose to use (veggie burgers work really well here, too!) – marinate your patties (thawed, if frozen) for eight hours, or overnight, in Lawry’s Pineapple Teriyaki (or use your own favorite) – this is one of those cases where I like the bottled stuff so much that I don’t really bother trying to make a replacement.
Fresh sliced onion is perfect with these burgers, but cooked is better for Rich, so I tossed some slices with a bit of olive oil, salt, and pepper in a foil packet and gave them to him to toss on the grill along with the pineapple slices – he uses a grilling platter so stuff doesn’t fall through the grates.
Grill, flip, grill.
THEN you add the cheese. Traditionally, we use American or mild cheddar for these burgers, but all we had in the cheese drawer was a lovely, sharp Tillamook white, so that’s what we used. Nice.
Cheese well and truly melted, now’s a good time for folks to assemble their burger – rolls, lettuce, grilled onion and pineapple, mayonnaise, and, always nice (but I didn’t have any on hand last night), fresh tomato.
Ermmm, I wouldn’t say no to a nice bit of jalapeño, either, but that’s just me…