Friday, April 30, 2010

Blue Cheese Bacon Burger - I think I got It!

After yesterday's less than sterling post of my first bread fiasco (click HERE), I wanted to do better with a meal.  In fact, I was after the best I could do...

Look close at the photo above... two different burgers, two different sauces, two different cooking techniques...

I have had the phrase "Signature Dish" on my mind lately.  While I go into every cook project trying to make the best final product I can, some dishes "work" better than others.  Also, some dishes I revisit (my wife roars in laughter when I use this term) in attempts to perfect the dish.  This is one of those dishes I really want to perfect.

Here in paradise, there is a terrific bar called, DUFFY's LOVE SHACK.  Jackie and I have tried several of the menu items they offer during the dozen or so times we have eaten there.  But we have started to order the same meal.  Both of us think their Blue cheese burger is the best thing they offer.  SO, I have set a goal of duplicating the taste of this burger before I leave.  I am finding out that this is MUCH harder than it sounds.  I did ask what the blue cheese sauce is, and was politely told they prefer to not divulge.  It involved rice wine, not to divulge (they know I am a blogger).  This sauce is not just melted blue cheese.  I have tried to duplicate the taste before.  I tried a recipe I found that was a little complicated (it used rice wine as a base).  While tasty, it was not the sauce I was after.  I did put out a plea on my blog and got a response and a suggestion. 

So last night, I made two burgers, two different sauces and two different presentation methods...

Here's what I did...

First up, Moomie Buns!  I have blogged this recipe many times, and if there is anyone afraid of baking bread (I read your comments, you know who I am talking to), give these buns a chance.  EASY, and nearly fool proof.  I have never had a bad experience with this recipe.  I make these about once a week down here in the land of $8 loafs of bread.  It is also very adaptable.  Today, I made the buns as listed in the recipe, but just prior to popping in the oven, I brushed with an egg wash, sprinkled a little garlic flakes and Parmesan cheese on the top.  Toasted garlic smells so good!  If you need the recipe for the basic Moomie Bun, click HERE... it will change your life.

Next up, I started working on the blue cheese sauce.  First, I used a super secret recipe.  Actually, one of my favorite bloggers is going to have a milestone soon.  Her recipe for a blue cheese sauce is scheduled to be published as part of a Newman's Own cook book (you know, THE Paul Newman - Cool Hand Luke, The Hustler and The Sting... the three greatest movies of all time!).  I do not have permission to pass the recipe on, so you will just have to trust me for a short amount of time (BTW, K... Let me know when it gets published, I want to buy a copy).

But, recently, I made a Garlic and Herb Cream Cheese DIP!  Which you can find by clicking HERE.  The dip was terrific, but the comment section had the real gem... Everyone's favorite, CHRIS from Nibble Me This, made this comment -

Chris said...

How about a "juicy lucy" style burger using this as the filling? Mmmmmmm
GENIUS!  That got my head spinning... What about a stuffed burger with a blue cheese mixture of this dip???  So, I made another batch up of the dip, and added about 2 ounces of blue cheese crumbles to the dip.

Stuffing a burger is pretty easy.  Make two thin patties, add whatever you want to stuff, and seal the edges.  Work hard at getting the edges sealed as once it starts leaking in the cooking process, all that great stuff leaks out.  It is a spectacular technique once you get it down.

One more tip, best to fry the burgers (actually best to grill them, but don't get me started).  cook with the cover on.  It helps to sort of "bake" them as well as fry them.  DO NOT press down with a spatula.  It will force the stuffing out.

I toasted the bun, added some crispy bacon, some raw onion slices and was ready for a comparison.

Comparing with the super secret Paul Newman "Cool Hand Luke" sauce.  The Paul Newman "The Sting" sauce was added as a glop on the top (actually the way it is served at Duffy's).

And the verdict...


I preferred the Paul Newman "The Hustler" cheese sauced burger, and thought that was the taste of the Duffy burger.  BUT...

Jackie was positive that Chris's (who has not appeared in a famous movie, but for the sake of continuity, let's call this the Porky's II burger... BTW, Porky's II, by far the best Porky's movie since the original Porky's, but I digress)...

So, Jackie preferred the Chris's "Porky's II" sauced burger.  This sauce was a little more complicated, and had extra flavor layers that I believe she was preferring.  But the Paul Newman "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" sauced burger was more likely to be the sauce that Duffy's uses (my goal).  the sauce was very easy, and that is a priority for bar food.

So, my final verdict...

I will use the "Porky's II" sauce when I want to impress.  It is just difficult enough to leave your guests admiring.  When it is just for Jackie and I... I may do the lazy thing and make the excellent Paul Newman "Color of Money" sauce.  Either way... this was an impressive burger!

Thanks Chris... Thanks K.



  1. Great experiment! So, is this going to be your signature dish???

  2. Recreating dishes is tough. For all you know there could be some random secret ingredient in there that you would never guess. Maybe they'll divulge it to you if you tell them you're leaving in a few weeks! Or you could always beg. Shamelessly.

    both of these sauces sound amazing! I love a good blue cheese stuffed burger. Maybe even with some bacon on top!

  3. Yay!! Someone else who eats their burgers a little pink in the middle!

  4. Love those burgers, but I have to make those buns too! I'm thinking 4th of July.

  5. Your Moomie buns have seriously been perfected. Both sauces sound seriously intriguing! Congrats to "K" on being published.

    There used to be a place called Hamburger Henrys in west LA and before them I had no idea that hamburgers could be so good! Keep perfecting your burgers!

  6. I love blue cheese! I make a simpler blue cheese sauce that reminds you of buffalo wings.. Blue cheese dressing, with added blue cheese crumbles to thicken into sauce, with a hot chili powder mixed in.. You can still top burger with a mild white cheese slice- Provolone, Mozzarella, or Havarti..

  7. excellent way to use that sauce! i'll eat something like this for breakfast!

  8. It almost makes me cry to think of you having to fry your burgers. One has to wonder at what caused the island to ban grills. Both burgers look delicious. I would be impressed with either one.

  9. I am going to have to get off the bleachers and into the game. Yea, I'm one of the ones you referred to about bread baking. Bawk, bawk, bawk... I'm chicken. (I even ordered and received my copy of BBA an HBin5 and still haven't made any bread. A sin, I know. I've got to say, I love a good Bleu Cheese Burger. Now I am curious about the "secret" recipe. But I'll just stick with your version for now. Sounds great.

  10. I'm officially drooling - your burgers look perfect!!

  11. Drooling over this! I can't wait to see the recipe for the bleu cheese sauce. This looks amazing!

  12. Damn, you beat me too it! I am still going to give this a shot because it seemed so good. I know you are dying to get back to your grills:)

  13. Awesome post! I had to unbutton my pants mid-way through reading it. Are you talking to me when you mentioned bread-baking-phobes? I'm having my regular crew over here on Tuesday night for LOST viewing. Maybe I will go out on a ledge and make these, but you and this damn blog are going to be responsible for my pants going up a waist size. Signed... "Once a 32"

  14. Hey there, just stumbled upon your blog (some fantastic stuff here, gonna stick around), as I was craving some blue cheese burglers tonight.

    I am going with Porky's II, but I would LOVE to try this super secret recipe.

    Did you have any information when it will be published?