Brown Sugar Burgers

Sweet. Heat. Meat.


  • ~1 lb ground beef. Grassfed. If you can’t find that, try to find a beef/unicorn meat blend.
  • 3TB dark brown sugar
  • 1.5t fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • 1t salt
  • 1t pepper
  • ~6 cloves smashed/diced/pulverized fresh garlic (more or less to your garlic tolerance)
  • .5t cayenne (more or less to your heat tolerance)
  • 5-6 splashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • Hawaiian buns
  • Bacon
  • Gouda cheese


  1. Thoroughly mix all ingredients. Except the buns, bacon, and gouda.
  2. Divide into about three patties (5.50 – 6oz per patty, give or take). Be sure to depress the center of the patty slightly with your thumb to ensure that the burger doesn’t turn into a meatball on the grill.
  3. If you have time, allow ingredients to marry up for a few hours in the fridge, but this isn’t a requirement.
  4. Prior to cooking, allow burgers to come to room temperature.
  5. Butter and grill the Hawaiian buns on medium heat.
  6. Grill burgers on high heat, 3-4 minutes per side, depending on done-ness preference. If you habitually press your burgers (thus robbing them of their juiciness) or flip them constantly, please, just stop. Sell the grill and go to McDonald’s.
  7. With ~90 seconds to go, add gouda cheese to the burgers so that it sufficiently melts.
  8. Allow burgers to rest 5 minutes before putting them on the buns and eating.
  9. Add burger and bacon to buns. Enjoy.

Smoked Brisket on the Fly

Ever wonder if you could decide to smoke a brisket at the very last minute and have it turn out? Yeah, me neither, because I just assumed it couldn’t be done. I found out yesterday I proved myself wrong.

Frozen, very small 3lb brisket. No marinating, no sitting overnight letting the rub soak in. No trimming of fat (forgot). Recipe for disaster.


  1. Defrost quickly in warm water in the sink (still sealed, of course). Took about an hour.
  2. While it is defrosting, prep the smoker (in this case, a Weber bullet) and soak the wood chips (I started with apple, finished with hickory).
  3. Apply layer of yellow mustard, then a liberal coating of Wood Chick’s dry rub (we have a bag of it always at the ready).
  4. Smoke to 165 (with the temperature varying wildly between 185 and 250 because I was distracted). Took about five hours to get there.
  5. Wrap in double-layer of heavy duty aluminum foil, just to shorten the stall.
  6. Back in the smoker until 195. Took about 90 minutes, partly because I was even more distracted and let the temperature approach 300.

Results:  My best brisket effort yet. Great flavor, extremely tender. Sliced across the grain and no BBQ sauce was used or required.

I cannot, however, recommend this approach all the time. I benefited certainly from a small brisket. Anything larger than that and I’d’ve been eating at midnight or the next morning.

In Honor of International Bacon Day I Give you Holy Crap!

Always Bacon.

This is a variation of a recipe found in the Food Network magazine, but with additional ingredients, more detailed instructions, and a dose of snark.

Note:  This is a GPL (general public license) to my recipe, granted under condition that the procedure will be followed more or less to the letter, particularly where noted below.


  • 6 Tbsp dark brown sugar (the darker the better)
  • 1 tsp, rounded, cayenne
  • 1 tsp, rounded, Black pepper
  • 1 tsp, rounded, powdered rosemary
  • .5 tsp cinnamon
  • .5 tsp nutmeg

Recommended but not required:  stone cookie sheet


  1. With cookie sheet in oven, pre-heat to 375 degrees.
  2. While pre-heating, mix all ingredients. If you choose to test them, have a beverage nearby. I find that alcohol works admirably. Note:  non-craft beers are unacceptable and will result in a revocation of the license.
  3. Remove cookie sheet, place bacon on cookie sheet.
    1. Do NOT add dry mix to bacon yet.
    2. Ensure bacon does not overlap. If that means you have leftover bacon that does not cook in this batch, so be it. Don’t compromise quality just because you’re lazy. Disobeying this instruction will result in a revocation of the license.
  4. Return cookie sheet with bacon to oven. Cook for 22 minutes.
  5. Using a heavy duty oven mitt (a mere Ove Glove won’t do, but can be used in conjunction with other gloves), remove cookie sheet from oven and drain grease into sink. You don’t have to be perfect here, but let’s get rid as much of the grease as is reasonable.
  6. Using fork, flip the individual bacon slices. This is a pain in the tukus, but must be done.
  7. Liberally sprinkle about half of the dry mixture across the bacon. Type A personalities will want to divide the mixture evenly ahead of time.
  8. Return cookie sheet to oven, cook for 10 minutes.
  9. Using a heavy duty oven mitt, remove cookie sheet from oven. No need to drain.
  10. Using fork, flip the individual bacon slices again.
  11. Liberally sprinkle the rest of the dry mixture across bacon.
  12. Return cookie sheet to oven, cook until done.
  13. Remove cookie sheet from oven, let rest for 1-5 minutes, then transfer bacon to paper towels to drain and complete cooling.

Yield:  ~12 slices.