Sunday, April 21, 2024

Cooking with Blobby

Today we are doing a patty melt. 

Oddly, until a few months ago, technically I've never had one. I know, right?

Actually, until a few years ago, while loving onions, I loathed grilled onions. Or thought I did. 

If I brought it up to my psychiatrist ever, I'm sure we'd quickly get down to my mother's love for liver and grilled onions. For decades I would avoid both. I still avoid liver. 

Still, patty melts we'd only get when out - and rarely at that. While I love hamburgers on the grill, sometimes you just want something a little different. While this is more labour intensive than throwing meat on a grill, it is totally worth it. 


Yield: 4 servings 

4 to 6 tablespoons unsalted butter 
2 large onions, peeled and thinly sliced 
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 
1½ pounds ground beef, at least 20 percent fat 
8 slices seeded rye bread 
8 slices Swiss cheese, approximately ½ pound 

Let's start with we basically cut everything in half here, though we had about 2/3rds of the ground beef which was 15% fat. I get where 20 could have been better.  So our reduction made us three melts

The main photo has Worchester Sauce - which I thought we'd use but didn't, though it would have been fine. 


Step 1  Caramelize onions. Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet set over high heat. When it foams, add the onions and sprinkle with salt. Do not stir immediately. Wait 1 minute, then begin to stir frequently over high heat for 5 minutes or so, or until the onions have released some liquid and started to become translucent. 

Step 2  Reduce the heat to medium, and cook, stirring often, for what will seem like a very long time, until the onions are fully melted and dark golden brown, approximately 30 to 40 minutes (30 tops!). Remove onions, and set them and the skillet aside. (You can caramelize the onions a day ahead of time and reheat slowly when you’re ready to cook.) 

The reduce to so little, but taste and smell so great. 

Step 3  Cook the burgers. Add the remaining butter to the skillet in which you cooked the onions, and place it over medium heat. Gently divide the ground beef into 4 small piles, and then lightly form these into patties that are like flattened meatballs, roughly the shape of a slice of rye bread. Season aggressively with salt and pepper.  (I assume it doesn't mean throwing spices at the meat!)

Step 4  Increase the heat under skillet to high. Put the patties into the skillet with plenty of distance between them, and allow them to cook, without moving, for approximately 2 minutes. Use a spatula to turn the patties over, and continue to cook for another 2 to 2½ minutes, then remove the patties from the skillet, and allow them to rest. (They will at this point be rare inside.) 

Step 5 Decrease the heat below the skillet to medium, and put four pieces of rye bread into the butter and fat that remains from cooking the patties. Top each piece with a slice of cheese, then a patty, then some of the caramelized onions, and finally another slice of cheese and another slice of rye.

I forgot to take a pic of putting onions on it.  Oh, and we used sourdough, because ironically, I'm not a fan of Jewish rye bread. 

Use the spatula to press down on the packages, and after about a minute or so, carefully turn over each patty to begin to brown the other side. (You may need to add the additional butter.)   We did. 

Cook until the cheese is fully melted and the bread is golden brown and crisp on both sides. Slice in half before serving.

Yeah yeah, the plate is messy, but the sandwich was SO good. The ones we had while ordering out were good, but not as good as this. 

This is more labour intensive than a hamburger, but to me, the pay off was worth it.  We shall be doing these again. 

Note:  this might be better in a cast iron pan, but we don't have one. They seem like a LOT of work. 


Old Lurker said...

So delicious, and heart-healthy too! Now I am craving grilled onions.

Travel said...

Looks and sounds yummy. Best not to raise some subjects with shrinks.

James Dwight Williamson said...

Fry it I’ll eat it