Lasagna is one of all-time favorite dish, and just like pizza, it’s good even when it’s bad. But I do have a great recipe for the best lasagna ever, at least in my opinion. 😛 It’s also a great meal-prep food paired with a simple and fresh salad. And the meat sauce that goes into the lasagna goes really well with pasta too, and that’s also a very good meal-prep food. And instead of making a white sauce (I hate making it for some reason), I made a cheesy mixture which works rather well if you don’t like an overtly wet lasagna, just like I don’t. So here we go.
Oh my gaaawd, it has been so long from my last post! I’m still alive, barely. I have the worst case of seasonal affective disorder, accurately shortened to SAD, aka seasonal depression. After living over 25 years in this northern country with the darkest days halftime of the year, I’ve never had problem living without much day light. Autumn is my favorite season! But these past two years, as days shorten and autumn comes around, I would get so incredibly tired all the damn time, that I could barely function. No matter how much I sleep. And a tired brain means a brain with no inspiration whatsoever. Few weeks ago I also got the worst migraine I’ve ever had and it took me many days to recover. Today, it finally feels like the worst haze had past and I could at least think a little clearer. I’m still super tired all the time, but at least I got enough energy to do a tiny weeny workout in the morning. So I try to get back on some kind of a schedule, although I’ve missed so many opportunities to write about current events and reviews. Oh well. On this Foodporn Monday, let me share something that’s super exciting for me! 😛 Last week, Finland’s very first Taco Bell had its grand opening and I excitedly went to get a little feast. By some miracle, I actually got Atticus to go with me, and we lined to get in for like 1,5 hours! XD Yes, you are correct, nothing much happens here in the north, so something line a Taco Bell opening is a festive event. I was bouncing with excitement the whole 90 minutes while Atticus complained the whole time (mostly for my amusement for sure). At one point it actually started raining and it was like a cherry on the top of the cake of misery for the unenthusiastic Atticus that he was actually lining outside in the rain for Taco Bell. *toothy grin* Well, I had a lot of fun. :))
And when I said feast, I wasn’t kidding. 😛 We ordered to go and our order included: quesadilla with grilled chicken, a fresh burrito with pulled pork, a spicy chicken griller, a mexi melt, nachos supreme, fries with sauces, churros and extra cheese sauce plus guacamole. I didn’t actually order any tacos cos I don’t like softened tacos. Let’s see, the nachos were great, and churros. I love churros and not many places serve them in Finland. I will definitely go back for them. The fresh burrito packed some very delicious black beans, I didn’t care about the chicken griller or the mince beef mexi melt. I’ve heard that the tacos are better so I would definitely go try them some day. Quesadilla was delicious but definitely not a take-away food. Was it worth the 1,5-hour wait? Just the food, of course not. 😀 But since the company was great, it didn’t feel bad at all. 😛 And also, there is one product that is unique to the Finnish Taco Bell menu and that is pulled oats! I would definitely give that a try some day. #VisitHelsinki 😀
For the weekend, I wanted to make something fun! It started from my daydreaming about hamburgers and how inconveniently bacon fits into a round burger. I mean, what’s the point of it being round? It’s messier to eat, and there’s no way to get an even amount of bacon into each bite. Yes, evolutionary stuff goes on in my mind all the time. 😀 I really should start tweeting about them. 😛 Well, then, it came to my mind that how perfectly strips of bacon fit onto hot dogs. And then, what exactly is stopping me from making the hamburger patty into the shape of a chocolate bar. And the answer? Nothing! Nothing is stopping me! 😀 On Friday, I happily skipped to my local supermarket to get ingredients. So here it is, hamburger hot dog.
Makes 12 small hot dogs (so depending how hungry your eaters are, serves 3-6)
For the ‘patties’:
800 g minced beef (I used 15% fat)
1 egg, beaten
½ cup dry breadcrumbs
4 tsp Worcestershire sauce
½ tsp cayenne pepper powder
½ tsp smoked paprika powder
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion powder
a pinch of grounded black pepper
12 slices of bacon
Some cheese that is cut into a long shape.
I used cheddar, I got a whole brick of it and then cut thin strips out of them that were slightly shorter than the small hot dog buns.
chili pickle relish
roasted onion flakes
anything you like to put on your hot dog or hamburger
1. Put the minced beef in a large bowl. Measure and put all the ‘patty’ ingredients into the mix.
2. Mix well with hand.
3. Divide the mixture evenly into 12 parts.
4. Shape each part into a long shape, stick the cheese in the middle and wrap the minced beef around the cheese. Instead of a round shape like a pipe, I shaped some corners so they are easier to fry up and turn on the pan.
5. Wrap the bacon around the beef bars.
6. Heat up a non-stick pan, or the grill. Add just a little bit of oil or butter.
7. Fry all four sides of the bars evenly. It would depend on your stove or grill, it took mine around 1-2 minute per side to cook. I like my hamburgers to be a little pink on the inside. It will take longer to cook if you like your burgers to be well done.
8. Get a clean pan, heat it up. Butter up the hot dog buns from the middle and grilled them in the pan (only the middle side) until golden and crispy. The outside of the bun remains soft.
9. Stick the meat bar between the buns, put sauces and toppings and enjoy!
It turned out super delicious. The meat bar was juicy and full of flavors. I would’ve put more cheese so it would be oozier next time. I’ve paid 15-18 euros for gourmet hamburgers in restaurants but apparently these gourmet hamburger chefs think it’s a sin to flavor your hamburgers? I would be lucky if the patties at restaurants are even salted. I, on the other hand, skipped salt altogether because there were the bacon and cheese and then all the sauces on top for saltiness so the patties themselves only need spices and not salt. They were so delicious that I continue eating them all throughout the weekend, like the breakfast on the left. Two little hot dogs accompanied by a paprika spinach parmesan omelette, a very hearty breakfast. Hope you like this fun recipe!