As promised, Friday night was planned during the week and involved burgers and good friends whom we haven't been able to connect with for a long while. We got to show off our (almost) finished kitchen, and then opted to dine outside, since it was warm and a brisk wind was keeping the bugs away.
Our timing for the meal was rather tight due to our last minute decision to take the kids berry picking, since it was my husband's day off. We spent part of the afternoon at the Strawberry Ranch. It was a good day to be out there—not too busy, and lots of fat strawberries. We filled our two gallons so fast we decided to pick another one. It was also the first day of Saskatoon berry picking. We just bought a couple pounds of those.
I had intended to make a dessert with the strawberries, but since we didn't get home until 4:30, we decided to just serve them with cream (which is delicious enough!).
The rest of the meal was inspired in large part by Epicurious.com:
Sweet and sour cucumber with fresh dill
Portobello burgers with basil mustard sauce
My own standard hamburger recipe
Lettuce, tomatoes, cheddar, buns, ketchup, mustard
Our friends brought along a delicious salad
Fresh strawberries and Saskatoons with cream
I've been wanting to share my hamburger recipe. It's dead simple, and best used if you have a glut of hamburger meat, which we always do, since we get our beef in bulk. No filler required. Just beef and seasonings. Years ago I spent quite a bit of time researching the best hamburger for a party that I catered, and this is what I have come up with. I have never gone back to the traditional egg/breadcrumb approach, and I have actually converted my parents to this recipe:
1 lb. ground beef (lean or regular, your choice)
1 t. kosher salt
1 t. dried chopped garlic
1 t. dried onion flakes
1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper
1/2 t. red chilie flakes (optional)
Mix all ingredients together well, form into patties and grill. Enjoy! We did!