The Clear and Present Ginger Burger

It hasn’t actually been 3 months since our last Bob’s Burgers night. I just never told you about the Hatch Me If You Can burger. Or The Cauliflower’s Cumin From Inside the House and OMG It’s Fischoeder. And that is not at all because I don’t like you and don’t feel you deserve to know about these things. It’s because… life. Life has been considerably more lifelike since this little man became a part of it.

Adopting a senior dog with behavioral issues stemming from being allowed to keep his nuts until he was 9, and never being properly socialized on top of that, has been a challenge. But it’s something I wouldn’t trade for the world. The love I have for this little asshole is ridiculous. He has, however, cut into my blogging time a bit. Right now though, he is asleep and I can tell you all about what happened last night when I was really tired and had just finished a shoot* and was trying to figure out what to do with half a pound of ground turkey and the last few Imperfect figs.

The turkey had been out of the freezer for 2 days. A couple of the figs were at the stage of ripeness culinary pros refer to as “over”. So I grabbed The Bob’s Burgers Burger Book to see what could be seen. What could be seen was a lot of amazingness that didn’t really address the issue of what to do with ground turkey and figs. So it was off to the Bob’s Burgers Wiki to peruse BsOTD from episodes released after the book was published, at which point I realized the continued presence of these things in my refrigerator was…

A CLEAR AND PRESENT GINGER

If you, like me, are sometimes infuriated and disheartened by the hassle that is peeling and grating fresh ginger, get a bottle of this. I got the big bottle at Costco, and when I saw the smaller bottles at Grocery Outlet, I grabbed one as a backup.

Speaking of Grocery Outlet, I had on a recent trip picked up a bunch of shallots and a little chunk of mango goat cheese that seemed like perfect additions to this creation.

And speaking of being infuriated and disheartened, since it takes forthefuckever to caramelize a damn shallot, go ahead and get those started before you do anything else. Slice thin, throw in a sauté pan with a small splash of oil, set over low heat, and. just. walk. away.

Walk away over to your cutting board, and assess your figs**. Are there 8 of them still edible albeit squishy? Then you and I have much in common. Quarter them and sprinkle them lightly with salt.

You will eventually be adding them to the pan with the shallots. Eventually. Someday.

Doing your best to keep the audio of Liza Minelli singing “It’s gotta happen… happen sometime…” playing on loop in your head, decide to start working on your sides since the rest of your burger prep will only take about 7 minutes total once the damn shallots get their shalt together.

Did you know that just because something is homegrown, organic, and a vegetable, it does not have to be in any way actually good for you?

SPICY CURRY DEEP-FRIED GREEN BEANS

3/4 cup AP flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tsp each salt, cayenne, and curry powder
1/2 cup cold water
1/4 cup Sriracha vodka (or plain vodka and add a little extra cayenne)
Allllll those green beans from your garden that decided to ripen at once (a very generous handful)

Fill and preheat your deep fryer, or put about an inch of oil in a large skillet over high heat. Rinse green beans and thoroughly pat dry. Put dry ingredients in a mixing bowl, pause to take a picture because you have a fondness for artsy photos of dry ingredients,

then whisk together until well-combined and without visible lumps of flour.

Glance over at your shallots and realize they have FINALLY cooked down and turned brown. Add your cut/salted figs to the pan with a generous tbsp of Squeeze Ginger. Stir to combine, increase heat to medium, say a silent prayer of gratitude, and get back to your green beans.

Add water and vodka to dry ingredients,

and stir until batter is smooth. Add green beans to bowl about a third at a time, stir/toss to coat with batter, and fry until golden brown, about 3 minutes. If pan-frying, flip halfway through. Set on paper towels to absorb excess oil while you finish prepping the burgers.

Check on your gingery fig & shallot jam and see that the figs have softened and broken down nicely. Remove from heat, stir to really smoosh everything together, and set aside to cool. Wish later that you’d gotten a picture of this.

Pop your brioche buns in the toaster on the same setting you’ve conveniently forgotten caused you to burn them twice last time you did that. Or some other lesser notburny setting, totally up to you. Divide your half pound of turkey into two parts and form patties. Sprinkle them lightly with salt. Ponder whether the Ginger in this burger is really Clear and Present enough. Decide it is not, and sprinkle your patties with Ras el Hanout, too. Mentally compose this burger and decide that on this day you can easily butcher the health benefits of yet another vegetable, so grab the spinach that is also nearing the end of its useful life in your fridge.

Preheat a large skillet with a tablespoonish of oil over medium-high. Cook your patties until golden brown on the outside and 165 °F on the inside, about 3 minutes on each side. Remove patties from pan and set aside to rest, and toss your spinach into the skillet, stirring to wilt evenly.

THE STACK

Bottom only-borderline-burnt bun. Generous spread of mango goat cheese. Even more generous spread of gingery fig & shallot jam, which you did at least get a picture of this time. Beautifully golden brown turkey patty, which you did not get a picture of at all before you topped it with wilted spinach. Top bun.

IN SUMMARY

– I should have let myself just have some leftover fig & shallot jam instead of trying to use it all on two burgers.
– Spicy curry deep-fried vegetables will now be a staple in this house.
– Toaster on TWO. Toaster NOT on Three. Three hates burger buns. Remember this.
– I love mango goat cheese.

(*My outofitness last night is apparent in not only the quality of my photos for this post, but also the things I neglected to photograph at all. I apologize and shall do better next time)
(**I am now going to start using “assess your figs, bro” as a replacement for all “calm down” idioms)

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