Believe it or not, but the 4th of July is only a few days away! Do you know what you’ll be preparing for your friends and family at your backyard barbecue? When it comes to food, especially during the warm summer months everyone loves a juicy burger or grilled hot dog topped with Hellmann’s mayonnaise (Best Foods out here in Northern California) and this morning renowned chef Tim Love joined me for an interview to dish on the secret to making a delicious hamburger/hot dog that your guests will adore! He also shared his number one tips for grilling meats and how to ensure your vegetables stay crisp while grilling. Chef Tim Love also gave us a sneak peek at the new Hellmann Mayonnaise squeeze bottle which will ensure none of your mayonnaise goes to waste.
Candace Rose: What are some of your favorite dishes to prepare for the 4th of July?
Chef Tim Love: “There’s a lot of stuff that you can prepare for the 4th of July. In fact, I used to say that the 4th of July would be meat day for me. We used to roast all kinds of different meats, but when you have friends and family over, what you want to do is make it simple so you can have a little bit of fun yourself and enjoy your fireworks, enjoy your picnics. That means easily, hamburgers and hot dogs, right? We all enjoy that, don’t you think?
Today I’ve got a recipe for you that makes it a little bit more fun. We’re taking burgers and shaping them into hot dogs. It allows you to get a little more char around the outside of your burger. It’s kind of just a fun little play on what burgers are. I like to use a 50/50 ground tenderloin and ground brisket (you can get your butcher to do whatever you like) but that’s my recipe that I like. We grill them just like this (please see video above for details). Look at this nice little char I get on the outside of these hot dogs, that to me is the best part of the burger is to get that nice char there. Give it a little texture/crunch on your burger, and then of course I like to top it off with a little bit of cheese.
Then we take the hot dog off and it becomes all about the toppings. On burgers for me I like a little bit of pickles and then some mayonnaise. The thing about with hot dogs, it was always hard with mayonnaise because you’ve got to dig out of the bottle right and get your knife out? Well, Hellmann’s has solved that problem, they’ve got these unbelievable squeeze bottles and it’s very easy (for the mayonnaise) to come out of the bottle. This seems like it’s not that big of a deal, but I’ve got to tell you, Candi, it’s a big deal to me because quite frankly I seem to make a mess every time that I use the mayonnaise.
This new bottle, not only does it make it easy to get the mayonnaise out, but it also makes sure that you use up all the mayonnaise in the bottle. Hellmann’s discovered that almost 1,000 pounds of mayonnaise went missing. I knew it sounds crazy like a mystery, but what they did is they found out it was all left in the jar because you can’t get it all out. You’d have to shake the heck out of it. With this technology there’s no shaking, no anything and you get every bit of the mayonnaise out of there without any issue at all. I know that sounds kind of crazy, but to me that makes all the difference in the world.”
Candace Rose: Do you have any grilling tips you can share with us, especially for those of us who aren’t the best when it comes to grilling?
Chef Tim Love: “Sure. The thing about grilling is about keeping it simple. For me, when you keep it simple it’s all about having fun. To have fun, you’ve got to prepare yourself. Preparation when grilling is the most important thing – get your grill really hot, get your meats ready to grill and your vegetables. We all like to grill vegetables as well. If you don’t get yourself prepared it becomes more of a hassle than anything else, so when your friends come over make sure that everything is ready to go.
I also suggest that you sear your meats, especially when you’re going to do steaks, ahead of time. Make sure you grill them ahead of time one temperature below what you like, put them back on the grill to finish when your guests get there. That way you’re not spending all your time around the grill, you’re actually having some cocktails with your friends.”
Candace Rose: What’s the best way to grill vegetables?
Chef Tim Love: “When you cut vegetables – things like zucchini, the best way to grill them is cut them into long thick strips or on the bias like I have here. Soak them in ice water before you grill them. So soak them in ice water, take them out, hit them with a little bit of oil before you put them on the grill. This will keep the vegetables really crisp so you get a nice grill mark on them on a hot grill, get the flavor so they don’t become really limp. You want them to stay crisp. That’s what we like about vegetables, we like that nice crunch and the trick to that is soaking them in ice water first.”
Candace Rose: Do you have any additional tips or information you’d like to share with us?
Chef Tim Love: “Well, I’ve got tons of tips about grilling at Hellmanns.com. I’ve got a lot of recipes including this hamburger/hotdog here. If you go and check that out you can get all kinds of tips for you.”