The Classics: Bacon Cheeseburger

Here we are again! The Classics are back; bigger and better than ever! This time around I’m taunting you with this crazy awesome cheeseburger. The cheeseburger to end all cheeseburgers. If you remember correctly, the last classic was this insanely good Buttermilk Fried Chicken, and if for some reason you don’t remember, I took the liberty of linking it for you. You can thank me later. I’ve gone ahead and added bacon to the mix because as I’m sure you’ve heard, everything is better with bacon. Just in case you didn’t know, I invented that saying. Okay, maybe I didn’t (but let’s pretend I did). Bacon just takes everything over the edge. You always want to invite bacon to any gathering, it’s basically the life of any and every party. You can quote me on that, although I’m sure you’ve already experienced it for yourself. 

I know what you must be thinking, “Jonathan, burgers are so SIMPLE to make. Why are you sharing this easy recipe with us?!” Okay, so burgers are easy to make, I’ll give you that. But I’ve actually been told a few times that burgers are somewhat daunting to people. Actual homemade burgers, that is. I think it’s the whole mixing of the meat and shaping of the patties that scares people away. It shouldn’t be frightening at all, though. Not in the slightest. These posts are meant to bring you those classic recipes without all of the complicated steps and hassle of spending hours in the kitchen, remember? So that’s why I’m sharing my favorite cheeseburger recipe with you. Perhaps you’ll even learn a new tip or trick that you didn’t know before. Maybe, it’ll just inspire you to go out and make your favorite burger, that’s okay too. That just means I did my job well, and that’s all that counts. 

The most important thing is that I’m not ready to let summer go—just for the food, the heat can go away—so I’m still cooking and grilling as if summer is in full swing. Although, it does feel like summer just started over here in Los Angeles. The heat has been insane. I figured why fight it? I might as well embrace it. Hence, burgers in late September. I’m okay with that though because cheeseburgers are everything to me. Especially if they’re mini cheeseburgers. Well, that’s a whole other topic. These? These aren’t mini cheeseburgers, no. But I will tell you what they are. They’re 100% awesome and bigger than life itself, and that’s a fact. 

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Bacon Cheddar Jalapeño Corn Dogs

I’ve been wanting to make corn dogs for the blog since for as long as I can remember. In fact, I’m like 99% sure that I wanted corn dogs to be my very first recipe/post. I said, “Jonathan, you should totally make corn dogs as the first ever recipe/post on this new blog you want to start!” Unfortunately, as life would have it, it didn’t work out that way, and I ended up making a cinnamon swirl loaf instead. I wasn’t upset or anything, I happen to love cinnamon and bread is sort of my weakness, so there were no complaints here. I kept telling myself that corn dogs would be the next post, and then the next post and the next. Each post came and went, and as you know, corn dogs always got cut. So flash forward to me now, about two and a half years later (or is it three already? I really can’t remember at the moment) and corn dogs are still no where to be found. Until now of course.

Whenever I wrote it into the schedule of upcoming posts, something would always come up, be it a holiday or special day, where corn dogs just didn’t seem to fit. Now I know what you must be thinking, “Corn dogs always fit, Jonathan. Always and forever.” You’re right they do. That’s where I dropped the ball. I wasn’t thinking straight. I didn’t realize that by continuing to push corn dogs down the long list of upcoming posts I would be depriving not only me, but you as well. Corn dogs are delicious and I’m happy I finally got around to fulfilling my deep fried, corn battered hot dog dreams (with a few jazzed up ingredients of course). It’s hard for me to do simple on here. Don’t get me wrong, I love simple recipes. It’s just that I think you all deserve better than that. Plus, how can you possibly tell me that bacon and cheese and jalapeños don’t make everything better. They really do. 

Sure it’s summer and I should be making lighter dishes and sharing healthy recipes that don’t require too much time in a hot kitchen. Sure, I should be doing that, but somehow my brain isn’t getting the memo. Somehow, I keep craving rich comforting foods, loaded with cheese and bacon and butter. I’ll get around to that “healthy” cooking and eating at some point. Right now, just let’s enjoy the moment. This moment being hot dogs on a stick, coated in a corn, bacon, cheddar cheese and jalapeño batter, and deep fried until crunchy and golden brown. Did I mention there’s a sweet and spicy honey mustard dipping sauce involved?  

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Breakfast Ice Cream

You hear that? That sound off in the distance getting louder and louder? That’s the world exploding (ka-BOOM) and the internets collapsing [whoooosh (that’s the sound of the internet collapsing by the way, I’m a low budget blog, sorry)] because I just officially made eating ice cream for breakfast a thing. Like for real for real. Who would have thought that all my dreams could eventually come true in one simple recipe? Certainly not me. We finally have an excuse to whip out a spoon and head to the freezer first thing in the morning. Ice cream first, coffee later. Let’s all rejoice! Let’s hold a breakfast ice cream block party to celebrate. I took all the things we love about the most important meal of the day and combined it into a delicious ice cream. Maple syrup and fluffy buttermilk waffles and crispy bacon. It’s one tasty ingredient after another. I can hardly contain the excitement. (That’s me excited). I wish I could make it rain breakfast ice cream because I want everyone in this world to try it, but sadly I can’t make it rain delicious tubs of frozen treats. The shame, it’s too much to bear. Let’s not talk about it anymore. 

I’m not going to take all of the credit for this one because that would be wrong. I wouldn’t be able to sleep at night. Not because of a guilty conscious or anything, but because I’d be in the doghouse. Sure I helped come up with some of the important parts of this recipe—and sure I was the one who actually made it and brought it to life—but it was in fact the brain child of my boyfriend. We all have him to thank for it. Thank you, Julian. He was super excited one night as he tried to convince me to make breakfast ice cream with waffles and bacon for my blog, because “bacon ice cream is a really big thing these days.” I did however, add the maple syrup part to the mix and named it breakfast ice cream. Or maybe it was him. I can’t really remember who thought of the name right now, at this very moment. Of course he’s yelling “likely story” out loud as I type this. Between you and I, though, I really think it was me who came up with the name, but who’s keeping track? (I am). 

So here I am today, freezer filled with breakfast ice cream, moms and dads and doctors and nutritionists all upset with me because I’m advocating the eating of ice cream for breakfast. Go eat ice cream for breakfast, kids! I regret nothing, and do you want to know something? You won’t regret anything either once you actually try it for yourself. Let’s just say I’m a bad influence and call it a day. But doesn’t the prospect of reaching into the freezer for a pint of this delicious stuff sound inviting and exciting? Yeah, yeah it does. You can thank me later. Right now, you have waffles to make and bacon to crisp and maple ice cream to churn, and hungry friends and family to fend off, I mean to feed. 

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BLT Biscuit Sliders

Let’s discuss a few things, yeah? Let’s talk about how my love for biscuits knows no end. Biscuits are like the equivalent to what doughnuts are to me on the sweet end. If you didn’t know already I happen to love doughnuts (I’d kill for one), but that’s neither here nor there. We’re talking about biscuits. Biscuits is the name of the game. We can also chat it up all day long about the many things you’d have to do to get me to eat bacon. I’ll let you in on a secret though, it doesn’t take much for me to eat a few slices of crispy bacon. And by a few I of course me, a ton of. I’d do unspeakable things for bacon. It’s okay, you can judge me. I can tell you all about my undying obsession with avocado anything and I’ll share the story about the one time I ate nothing but avocados for dinner and it was awesome. I have no regrets. We can brush up on such topics as BLT’s, sandwiches and sliders. All of which are very near and dear to my heart. Mostly because I love the idea of little hamburgers and tiny sandwiches because it means you can eat a lot more of them without feeling guilty. What? They’re tiny! 

The only time I’ll eat a BLT is when I can assure myself that I’ll get a sandwich loaded with bacon. More bacon than anything else. I’ve encountered a few sad BLT’s where there’s like one slice of bacon amidst a thousand slices of tomato and a million pieces of lettuce. What kind of sandwich is that?! That’s more like a salad, if you ask me. I don’t want a salad! I want a big stacked up bacon, bacon, bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich. With super toasted bread, of course. That goes without saying. 

So I’m brainstorming recipe ideas one day and I, for some unknown reason, keep getting an incessant craving for a BLT sandwich. It’s weird, because like I said earlier, that never happens to me. I contemplated different ways I could make it for you (for me). I knew it had to be something awesome because you need an awesome recipe. I owe it to you. I also knew there needed to be a ridiculous amount of bacon involved. It all sort of avalanched together. I had a vision to make them into sliders because sliders are just so awesome. I was eating toast with jam that day and the biscuit idea sort of called out to me like a light from the sky. Okay, so it might not have been that dramatic and magical, but for the sake of the story let’s say that it was. Anyhow biscuit BLT sliders were born. Avocado wanted to be included so I invited it to the party and called it a day. So now here we are, making and eating and talking about BLT biscuit sliders. Who would have thought? Oh, I totally did my friends. I totally did. 

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Loaded Baked Potato Scones

I don’t think I have to explain my undying love of potatoes to you. I think you just get it. If I were to say to you that potatoes are the best vegetable/starch ever, like in all the worlds, well you would know I wasn’t lying. You’d most likely agree with me, because umm hello, potatoes. I have this obsession with potatoes. That’s where Potato Tacos and Potato Balls come into the picture. Not like a “they’re so good I’m obsessed can’t get enough of them” kind of obsession. While yes that’s true, it’s more like a “I need to eat potato everything and anything because they’re that good,” kind of obsession. I think it’s a healthy addiction. Nothing to worry about. It’s quite common if you really think about it. Don’t look at me like that!

I know that at some point I’ll be asked if these are scones or biscuits, and to tell you the truth, I’m not quite sure myself. I have no idea. Let’s be frank, they look exactly the same. All I know is that they’re flaky and delicious and I want to eat them all. I guess we can call them biscuit scones. Biscones. Or sconsuits. Hey look at us, we’re inventing new things. Aren’t we clever? The answer is yes. Always, yes. In all honesty, jokes aside, scones and biscuits, they’re pretty much the same thing, right? I mean, I can’t really tell the difference. Some sources claim to know the answer. The answer being that scones have eggs in the dough. Um no. I know plenty of scones that don’t have eggs in them so therefore, are they biscuits? Others claim that scones are scones if they are triangular and biscuits are biscuits if they are circular. This might be the case but at the same time, I’ve seen circular scones so I don’t think there’s a right answer here. I think the people who invented each of them got together and decided to play a trick on all of us. They wanted to mess with our heads. 

The bottom line is I made these potato scones/biscuits with bacon and cheese and I can’t think of anything more delicious at the moment. They’re something out of this world, especially right out of the oven all warm and flaky and delicious looking. Am I convincing you yet? These biscuits/scones are sort of like the ultimate snack, perfect for on-the-go. It’s potatoes, cheese and bacon and bread in a small package that you can eat with one hand while you (safely) drive to work or school or where ever else you drive. How about now? Are you convinced? These scones/biscuits are all like, “Hey look at us, we’re loaded with potatoes and crispy bacon and delicious cheese. You need to eat us!” They’re calling out to you because they know you can’t resist. Don’t fight it anymore, go on and make these biscuits/scones for yourself. 

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Fried Chicken and Waffle Sandwiches

Before we can dive, mouth first, into this post we need to discuss one important topic. It’s more so answering a critical question, really. It happens to be the biggest question ever asked in the food world. The answer to which is the most vital piece of information that can ever be granted. You might be wondering what the question is. I’ll tell you that it’s a question I’m most often asked. Perhaps you’ve been asked it too. You’d be surprised how may people inquire about such a topic. Pancakes, waffles or french toast? My answer is always waffles. Waffles to the very end of my existence. Waffles for life. Waffles, always and forever. Waffles for the win. And not just because this happens to be a waffle post, no, but because crispy on the outside, moist on the inside waffles are to die for. Although not on pancake days. Tall stacks of warm flapjacks with butter and maple syrup, perhaps with a few chocolate chips thrown into the batter? Definitely pancakes. Pancakes to the very end of my existence. Pancakes for life. Pancakes, always and forever. Pancakes for the win. Yet french toast, however, is kind of the best thing on the planet, isn’t it? Challah or brioche french toast with a dusting of powdered sugar, perhaps even stuffed with cream cheese and berries? Most definitely french toast, hands down one hundred percent. French toast to the very end of my existence. French toast for life. French toast, always and forever. French toast for the win. Do you see my dilemma? I can never get anywhere with this.

Over the weekend I was housesitting/cat sitting for a friend. It was a nice get-away for me, as said friend lives by the beach. Now I know what you must be thinking, “But Jonathan, you hate the beach!” If you weren’t thinking it before, you’re thinking it now. And you’re right, I’m not a beach person—I’m not much of a sun person really—but I am a cooler weather person. So I’m all for houses by the beach and gloomy overcast days. I decided to get some work done—in between constantly taking pictures of her cat and getting on his nerves with hugs and kisses of course—while I was over there. I always think it’s fun to cook in someone else’s kitchen. You get thrown out of your comfort zone, out of your element. It’s sort of weird preparing for a post in a space I’m not familiar with, especially since my friend also bakes and cooks and shoots and writes. It’s like walking around in someone else’s shoes for a day, ones that take you a while to get used to. However, I did manage and I actually had a lot of fun shooting somewhere different. Somewhere that wasn’t my own house for a change. I’m sure Miller, my college studio lighting teacher would be oh so proud of me for that, so this post is for him for forcing me out of my comfort zone (it only took me a year to do it). In the end I love how the pictures turned out, but lets be honest, shooting with the cutest cat in the world, certainly helped. He’s a hoot, constantly sneaking up trying to get food, thinking he can’t be seen. Oh I can see you Jules Stevens, I can see you and you’re adorable. I guess when it comes to fried chicken and waffles none of us can keep away.

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