Friday, June 22, 2012

Best Burgers and Fries

The secret to the best burger and fries, just like any dish, is in the ingredients. With an American staple like a cheeseburger, it's easy to slap meat on a bun and call it good. But with a little extra effort, what ends up still being a very easy meal can be lightyears better. So, here are some suggestions.

As you can see, we don't kid around. We use American cheese, baked and crispy bacon, grilled mushrooms, buns from a bakery, and romaine lettuce. Simple things make it mind-blowing. We toast the buns in the oven and we're not scared to use a huge, flattened patty ('cause the thing shrinks in the pan). We also have a secret weapon: Red Robin seasoning.

We put a dash of this seasoning on both sides of our patties, and it makes a world of awesome. We refuse to make burgers without it.

For fries, we cut potato slices as thin as we can, and we love using russet potatoes or sweet potatoes. We coat the fries in olive oil, give them a nice cover of Red Robin seasoning, and put them on a non-stick baking sheet. Bake them at 425 degrees for about 30 minutes, and make sure to stir them up halfway through baking to make sure they get nice and crispy golden on all sides.

The other secret to our fries and burgers: the Utah original creation, fry sauce. We often buy Hire's brand (pictured) or Stephen's (we do not like Some Dude's Fry Sauce-- it's chunky and weird). We can't explain the magic behind fry sauce. It's a delicious concoction of ketchup, mayonaise, and zesty mystery.

Now we've given you all our secrets. Go forth and make good burgers, young padawan.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Travel Post: The Paramount in Boston

When we travel, our vacation largely centers around food. We think a big part of exploring and experiencing a city is tasting it. So, before traveling, we research online, compare menus, and collect restaurant recommendations from friends. This led us to one of Boston's most-loved breakfast spots: The Paramount.

This place doesn't have a lot of frills. It's simple, good food. You bask in the glory of a giant chalkboard covered in delicious descriptions, order at the counter, and have your food brought to your table.

The menu item that really stood out to us: the banana and caramel french toast. Behold it in all its glowing beauty. The french toast was cooked to perfection, and it was a wonderful excuse to have dessert for breakfast. We couldn't have asked for anything more.

Check out The Paramount at It has a couple locations in downtown Boston: one in Beacon Hill and one in South Boston.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Chicken Divan

In reality, this isn't quite chicken divan; it's our more delicious version of chicken divan.

What you'll need:

3 pounds chicken breasts
3 C fresh broccoli (or frozen broccoli if you prefer)
1 box quick rice (we use Rice-A-Roni chicken and broccoli)
1 C mayonaise
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 C dry white wine (we use pinot gris)
1 C grated cheddar
2 Tsp lemon juice
Dash of curry powder
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 C breadcrumbs
1/2 C fresh grated parmesan
Butter for greasing pan

Bake chicken breasts at 350 degrees for 25–30 min on a baking sheet. Once it's done cooking, cut into chunks or shred. Cook fresh broccoli in a vegetable steamer for 7–8 minutes (or cook frozen broccoli if you prefer). Cut broccoli into chunks. Make your quick rice according to the instructions on the box.

Mix soups, mayo, white wine, cheddar, lemon juice, curry powder, and salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add chicken, broccoli, and rice to the mixture.

Grease a 9x13 inch glass baking dish. Add the mixture to the baking dish and spread evenly. Sprinkle breadcrumbs and parmesan on top. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Then broil for a couple minutes to get a nice golden brown crust on top.

Enjoy ecstasy.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Lamb's Grill

If The Wild Rose is the shining example of how to use sauces to enhance a meal (and it is), then Lamb's Grill is the example of how not to use sauces. This restaurant has a certain amount of charm-- it's been open since 1919 and it has a charming old-timey bar with leather chairs. Unfortunately, beyond the bar, the restaurant looks worn and run-down, and its dinner menu leaves a lot to be desired. Not only that, but when we went for dinner, the place was empty, and we still had way below-par service from our waiter.

Now, the food here isn't awful by any means, but for the price, it doesn't do it for us. These dishes are fine, but they lack any sort of finesse, and they don't really require any cooking talent. Every dish is smothered in a similar gravy sauce that's greasy and tastes like it's been sitting around, waiting to be poured over various dishes throughout the day. You can even see the grease and staleness in the pictures below.

Also, just for the record, we ordered beef bourguignon, but what Lamb's calls beef bourguignon is not actually how we imagine the dish. Traditionally, beef bourguignon is a meaty stew with vegetables, but we were served a piece of meat with gravy over it, masking and overpowering the flavor of the meat.

(beef bourguignon) 

(braised lamb shank)

Yeah... we won't be back. We would love to support such a long-enduring Salt Lake institution, but we can't bring ourselves to support this food.

Lamb's Grill is located at 169 S Main Street, SLC. Their website is