Actually, this has nothing whatsoever to do with Calais, I've just always wanted to make that joke. And seeing as we're being robbed of a decent summer here in London, you've got to get the laughs where you can.
Nothing quite beats a good burger, unless you're vegetarian of course. And nothing quite beats a homemade one either. You can add all kinds of spices and herbs to it to pep it up a little, or, you can keep it simple, but know exactly what's in it.
I usually add some red onion compôte to my burger mix, but today I've just gone with finely chopped red onion. Added to that are some capers for a little zing, a few dried herbs (I find adding fresh ones too mimsy) and for smokiness, some paprika. Ready to cook after a little rest in the fridge to firm up and you can do this on the barbecue if you're somewhere sunny, or just on a hot griddle pan if you're in England.
Maybe next year...
Ingredients (per burger) 150g good minced beef 1tsp dried rosemary 1tsp dried thyme 1tsp smoked paprika 1tsp capers 1 tbsp chopped red onion Some beaten egg (1 between 2 burgers) 1tbsp breadcrumbs Plenty of salt and pepper to season Some sliced red onion Some lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, mustard and ketchup and a good bun.
Method: Mix all the burger ingredients together well and leave to rest for about 20 minutes in the fridge.
Heat a griddle pan until smoking the. Cook the burger for about three minutes each side, longer if you prefer it well done. Cook the onion rings and toast the bun a little. I prefer sesame topped soft buns, a classic, but you may be trendy and want to use brioche... Your choice.
Top a bun with lettuce, tomato and onion then add the burger, ketchup and mustard and eat with plenty of napkins.