Herb Butter makes a Better Butter Burger!
Butter is a hot button issue for many people, including doctors and nutritionists. “Butter is bad” has been a clarion call from nutritionist for decades.
But butter is back. There are some new studies out about the value of butter in the diet…but I don’t really want to get involved in that issue, other than to say, “Butter is flavor”, which is what Yes!Chef! says whenever the subject of butter comes up.
Speaking of butter, Julia Child’s 102nd birthday was last week and Y!C! and I celebrated by not only highlighting butter in this post, but we also watched one of my favorite movies, “Julie and Julia”. Meryl Streep was so wonderful in the part of Julia Child.
Julie and Julia
And yes, I did take pictures of my tv while the movie was on.
Everyone knows that Julia Child was in love with butter and knew that butter adds flavor and richness that oil does not.
So, I talked Yes!Chef! into making an herb butter to place in the center of a barbecue burger because I had read about butter burgers somewhere and had began daydreaming about how they must taste. Because, truth be known, I love butter, too.
I must also say that I pushed the idea of herb butter even more when I suggested that Yes!Chef! use some basil that I had purchased at the Farmers Market together with Sriracha. Yes!Chef!’s initial reaction to those two flavors together was to turn up his nose, but I assured him that it would be wonderful and novel. He’s a good sport, so he tried it adding his own spin. And, of course, it was much better butter than I could have dreamed up.
Here’s the very simple, very versatile recipe for Yes!Chef!’s (with the help of his wife) Herb Butter
Yes!Chef! Better Herb Butter
Makes approx. 8 Tablespoons
- 3/4 stick unsalted good quality butter, softened
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced
- 2 Tbsp. finely diced red onion
- 1 tsp. finely chopped fresh basil
- 1 tsp. finely chopped parsley
- 1/2 tsp. Sriracha hot sauce
- salt and pepper to taste
- Place butter in a mixing bowl and mash down with a fork
- Add garlic, red onion, herbs and Sriracha. Mash until well mixed.
- Mix in salt and pepper to taste. Form into a ball.
- Place Better Butter Ball (heh!) in the center of a 12″x12″ piece of plastic wrap
- Using plastic wrap, roll butter into a log about 2″ thick. Cover butter with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for at least 1/2 hour.
Use 1 tbsp. of this wonderful butter when you make your scrambled eggs in the morning. It brightens the flavor and delights the senses. Yes!Chef! also threw some chopped green onions into the mix to add color and more flavor. (Don’t you wish you lived at my house and had this for breakfast every morning? I’m a lucky woman!)
But, my favorite use of this butter was Yes!Chef!’s Butter Burgers.
Yes!Chef! always weighs his burger meat (20% fat) before he makes the burgers. He usually makes me a 5 oz. burger and he goes for the 6 oz. burger. Make sure you season your burger meat with salt and pepper before you make them into burgers. Once you have decided the size of your burger, divide each burger into half and form each half into a small burger ball. Flatten each half into a thin disk. Place 1 butter disk (about 1 tbsp.) onto the top of one of the disks. Then form the other disk around the top of the buttered burger, sealing all the edges so that the butter does not leak out. Grill burgers as usual.
Yes!Chef! used some hickory wood chips for the above burger so it also had a smoky flavor.
He served the Better Butter Burgers with Sharp White Cheddar Cheese, heirloom tomatoes and Romaine lettuce. (We don’t eat bread anymore for health reasons, so we use lettuce to wrap the burgers as a substitute. But you can enjoy a great burger bun with this burger.) He also made grilled artichokes (he boiled them first until tender) with a Sriracha and basil mayo for a dipping sauce.
And when you cut/bite into the Butter Burger you will be speechless and very happy with the herby, salty, spicy, buttery flavor inside the burger! Don’t worry about the Sriracha making the burger too spicy, it doesn’t. It just gives the flavor a slight kick. However, if you like it a little kickier, add more sriracha (or a different hot sauce) to the butter mixture.
Before you leave, I just wanted to mention that I am taking another food photography class called, “30 Days to Better Food Photography”, which is a free class. It is presently closed but there is a waiting list for the next time it is offered. I struggle with my food styling, mostly due to lack of creativity, so I am taking this class to improve that aspect of my photography.
So far we have examined the work of great food photographers, learned about camera angles and aperture…
Lighting: window light and use of reflectors…
Telling a story with your food and how various backgrounds can help tell the story
Props and storage/organization of props
And yesterday, Day 15, we used different linens and napkins to add to the story and elevate the food styling.
(The above photo is Filipino Chicken Adobo that Yes!Chef! made again at my request. It was delicious.) Which napkin do you like best? I’m a little partial to the plain green one although it looks like I was just about to take a bite of the chicken but had to rush away from the table for some reason.
We are now halfway thru the course and I am happy to say that I have learned much already.
(I still think my food styling is severely lacking, but it is improved.)
If you are at all interested in improving your food photography, you should look into this free class. Lots of input from the other students is very helpful.
Hopefully, my food photography will greatly improve and make your mouth water when you see the new and improved food photos.