“Cheat Day” Crazy Burger!

Nearly everyone that I know that has ever gone on a diet has a “Cheat Day.” While I am not officially on a “diet” – we have been eating better, with the Air Fryer and things like Cauliflower Rice – we had a “Cheat Day” today. When I am in LA, I have a tendency to find these places with crazy sandwiches – so, today, I decided to make my own crazy Burger.

I started with sautéing some mushrooms in Butter and sprinkling in some Garlic Salt. Then I took 2 pounds of Ground Beef (for 4 burgers), and I mixed in some Salt and Pepper, followed by the mixing in the Sautéed Mushrooms. Then I formed the Ground Beef /Mushroom mixture into 4 patties.

Then I made some Mac and Cheese to put on the burgers when finished.

I cooked the 4 burgers in my 2 cast iron skillets on medium heat. I like burgers cooked in the cast iron skillet – they have a nice char on them – and it is the next best thing to grilled burgers.

When the burgers were nearly finished, I fried some bologna and some ham.

Also, I made some homemade French Fries – twice fried. I fried them for approximately 3 minutes, then I put them in the freezer for 30 minutes. Then I brought them back out, and fried them again until finished. By doing that, you get a nice crunch on the French Fries.

Then I assembled the burgers – starting with a large bun, then adding the Fried Bologna, then the Burger Patty, then the Fried Ham, followed by the Mac and Cheese. And, for good measure, we put some Queso on top of the Mac and Cheese.

I don’t have a name for this crazy Burger – but, it sure was good. Jesse said that we now have to try to replicate some of the crazy Hot Dogs at Dave’s Dogs. Needless to say – we definitely ate too much tonight, lol.

Taco Stuffed Potatoes

I made these Taco Stuffed Potatoes a couple of years ago – and decided I would try it again. I started with large Baking Potatoes, poked some holes in them with a fork, to allow the steam to escape – and rubbed them with Olive Oil and Salt and Pepper. Then o baked them at 400 degrees for 1 hour.

I fried 1 pound of hamburger, added some salt and pepper, some Beef Broth, and some Taco Seasoning. I let it simmer to cook off the Beef Broth.

After 1 hour, I took the potatoes out of the oven, and let them cool for a few minutes, then I cut the tops of the potatoes off. I removed most of the insides of the potatoes, leaving just enough to main their form. I then mixed the potato flesh with the hamburger mixture. Then I put the mixture back inside of the hollowed out potatoes.

Then I crushed up some Tortilla Chips and put them on top of the potatoes, then added some more of the potato /hamburger mixture, then topped with some cheese. And, as an added extra, I put the leftover potato /hamburger mixture on top of the potato section that I cut off the top, and topped it with Cheese.

Then, I put the potatoes back in the oven for about 10 minutes – then served. At that point, we topped our individual Taco Stuffed Potatoes with our choices of Taco toppings and Salsa.

They were very good, and it was a meal all by itself.

Maple Glazed Pork Tenderloin and Cauliflower Rice

Last night, I made a couple of Pork Tenderloin in the Air Fryer, and I made some Cauliflower Rice in the cast iron skillet. This was the first time making either of these 2 items – but, I gave it a shot. I started with 2 Pork Tenderloin, which I marinated for 2 hours in Apple Juice, Chicken Broth, Rosemary, Course Salt, and Apple Cider Vinegar.

When I took them out of the marinade, I patted them dry, then rubbed them with Olive Oil and put them in the Air Fryer for 15 minutes at 360 degrees. Then I flipped them, and cooked for another 15 minutes at 360.

While they were cooking, I prepared the Maple Glaze – Maple Syrup, Apple Juice, Rosemary, and Seasoned Salt. I cooked this mixture over low / medium heat until reduced by half – then removed from the heat.

I poured the Maple Glaze over the Pork Tenderloin and cooked for another 5 minutes at 260 degrees.

They turned out slightly over – cooked – but they were still very good. The next time I will decrease the cook time by a few minutes – and they will be perfect.

Then, I made some Cauliflower Rice. I took a full head of Cauliflower, washed it and dried it off. Then I cut off the leaves and the stalks. Then I cut the remaining Cauliflower head into four pieces, and grated the entire head – making shapes similar to a grain of rice.

I heated up the cast iron skillet, with a couple tsps of Olive Oil, then added the Cauliflower Rice. I added some salt, pepper, and a bit of Cayenne. I cooked it for approximately 5 minutes – stirring often. Near the end, I added some butter for good measure, lol.

The Cauliflower Rice was a hit – it came out very good – and for someone that doesn’t eat rice – this was pretty cool. Then I added some Whole Kernel Corn to top the whole meal off. I served the meal with the sliced Pork Tenderloin served over a bed of the Cauliflower Rice, with the corn on the side.

All in all – it was a very good meal. The more I use my Air Fryer, the more I like it.

Air Fried Pork Chops and Broccoli

So, for supper – I decided to put the Air Fryer back to work. I had some Pork Chops – with 2 different seasonings. First, I used the same rub that I use when I grill Pork Chops – (garlic salt, onion powder, thyme, ancho chili, smoked paprika, black pepper, ground mustard) on 2 of the Chops – and on the other 2 Chops, I put Salt, Ancho Chili, Garlic Powder, and Onion Powder.

There was a definite difference in the 2 tastes – but they were both very good.

I cooked them in the Air Fryer for 10 minutes at 350 – flipping them at the 5 minute mark.

Then, I made some homemade mashed potatoes, mixed with butter, Milk, Sour Cream, Salt, and Pepper.

Then I cut up 2 heads of Broccoli, tossed it in Olive Oil and Salt, and put them in the Air Fryer when I flipped the Pork Chops – cooking them for only 5 minutes.

Then I made some homemade Cheese Sauce to pour over the Broccoli – I started with some Heavy Whipping Cream, Butter, Cream Cheese, Pepper, Ground Mustard, Swiss Cheese, and Colby/Jack Cheese. I heated up the Whipping Cream, Butter, and Cream Cheese until everything was melted. Then I removed it from the heat and added the rest of the ingredients and whisked until smooth.

Here is the final result – Pork Chops, Mashed Potatoes, Broccoli with Cheese Sauce. It was a very good supper – another successful Air Fryer supper!

Dave’s Dogs Grill

I went with my son, Jesse, to his doctor appointment in Santa Barbara today – and we stopped at Dave’s Dogs Grill for Lunch. We have been here before – but, it is definitely worth a return trip.

I had a “Pulled Pork Mac” – it is a hit dog with Pulled Pork, Mac And Cheese, BBQ Sauce, and of course – BACON! Lol. It was absolutely amazing.

Then, I had some Chili Cheese Fries. I have eaten Chili Cheese Fries all over the country – but have never had them like this. As you will see from the pictures, they do not scimp on the Chili and Cheese. This was the first the first time that I have had Chili and Cheese left – after the Fries – very impressive.

And the prices are reasonable – about $15.00/meal – and more food than one person needs – lol.

Gunner ‘s Karate Tournament

Today, I went to my grandson, Gunner ‘s, karate tournament at Action Jr High school. I didn’t stay for the entire event – but left after Gunner did is Weapons routine.

He did very well, took 1st place in his class. They said that he did very well in his Kaya as well, but ended in 4th place. Not a bad day – after dealing with some leg pain since he just finished the basketball season.

LA Dodger Clock

My grandson, Gunner, is a LA Dodger fan – so I decided to try my hand at making a wood clock for him. It actually turned out pretty good – for my first shot at this.

I started out with 2 small pieces of Poplar wood, planed the edges smooth, and glued them together with some biscuit joints.

Then, I laided out the LA letters and traced them onto the Poplar. Then, with a jigsaw, I cut the pieces out. Through a combination of machine and hand sanding, I got it sanded smooth, and drilled a hole through the center of the “A” . Then, I marked out, and routered out the space in the back of the clock for the clock mechanism.

Then I stained the clock with a color called “Gunstock.” We have previously made a shelf for Gunner ‘s room with the same stain.

I tried painting the black space in the middle of the “A” – but that didn’t work well, so I cut a piece of black vinyl to go on there.

Then I applied a single “heavy” coat of polyurethane over the entire front of the clock – including the vinyl and the numbers. Then I put the clock mechanism in, put the hands on, and put a battery in it to make sure it works. It worked perfectly. Gunner really liked the clock.