Monday, 25 May 2009

Cookbook Review - Bobby Flay's Burgers, Fries & Shakes

Pity me and my family, we spent the week testing Bobby Flay's Burgers, Fries and Shakes recipes. Only for you, of course, purely a selfless act on our part. Oh how I suffer for the sake of my art and my friends!
Bobby Flay's newest book, riding on the heels of the opening of Bobby's Burger Palace in Lake Grove, New York, celebrates his love for the simple foods done right. What does a chef want to eat at the end of a grueling day, or on the dock of his buddy's cottage? Not foie gras or smoked duck, but a good, honest burger, cooked to perfection.

Bobby starts off with the basics, how to craft the perfect burger, the correct meat, fat, temperature and cooking times. He eshews "meatloaf" burgers and lets good quality meat speak for itself. To learn his technique, we started with Bobby's Perfect Burger. It was a great success, and hubby was surprised that he had something to learn about grilling burgers.

Later on we tried his Greek Burger, which was absolutely delicious. They were served to the adults while the kids had the Crunch Burger, below. As Bobby has over 30 burger recipes, it was hard to choose!

I was not as successful with the Beer Battered Onions Rings. I am not sure if there was something wrong with the recipe or something wrong with me (could go either way..) but there didn't seem to be enough flour in it. After an unsuccessful couple of rings in the written recipe, I dumped a bunch of flour in and made the rest. I actually over-compensated with the flour, but it was still better than not enough.

The Sweet Potato Fries were tender and delicious with the Mediterranean Seasoning and we gobbled them right up. I am thinking I like sweet potato fries better than regular ones.

As we were feasting for my son's birthday weekend, I made him the Dark Chocolate Milkshake with "Fluffy" Whipped Cream, with homemade chocolate syrup no less. Yep, I looked like a hero this weekend.

I thought this book was a lot of fun. Bobby goes into depth about all the elements of the perfect burger, fries, and shakes. The properties of different kinds of cheese, alternative kinds of fries as well as the perfect potato french fries, and truly decadent shakes.
I like how he includes recipes for sauces, condiments and seasonings, and even suggestions for making the drinks more "adult".
I would recommend this book as a Father's Day gift for the dad who likes to cook, a host or hostess gift for a big barbecue party or weekend at the cottage or cabin. This is simple fare done upscale - and no foie gras in sight.